All that was required to dodge the `eagle' eyes of the peer-reviewers of the journal was to flip the images and make small changes to them to make them appear as different images. The magnitude of the problem and the difficulty in identifying this by the peer-reviewers were brought out when the Hwang episode was in the news.
But if it is indeed that difficult to identify image manipulation and duplication, then New Scientist and the experts that the magazine got in touch with were able to prove that it was not as difficult as the journals claimed to be.
Image manipulation and duplication could have still been discounted as yet another fraud by an `over-enthusiastic' researcher. But unlike the Hwang episode, the isolation and use of MAPS have been patented. Verfaillie is one of names mentioned in the patent.
New Scientist found the three images used in the patent were nothing but those used in the Blood paper. But what literally sealed all her fire exits was that the duplicated images in the patent, unlike in the Blood journal, represented different body tissues!