Monday, February 20, 2006

Schatten's enhanced positioning for pending patent applications

The AP report below specifically mentions Schatten's enhanced positioning for pending patent applications. At the time the AP report was written, Schatten's 20060037086 (based on appl. 11/003006) was not yet public, but his earlier application (10/821,200) was public. The journal Science knew the authors of the 2005 paper by Hwang, Schatten, et al., had a patent interest, but did not investigate this interest, or inform the Science readership of the interest.


The University of Pittsburgh panel concluded Schatten "likely did not intentionally falsify or fabricate experimental data" and there is no evidence he knew of misconduct reported to have occurred in Hwang's group in South Korea.

But in a harshly worded report, the panel said Schatten joined forces with Hwang to help a colleague he admired and to help himself through "enhancement of his scientific reputation, improved opportunities for additional research funding, enhanced positioning for pending patent applications, and considerable personal financial benefit."

The panel was critical of Schatten's behavior, pointing out he accepted $40,000 in honoraria from Hwang within a 15-month span, including $10,000 in cash while attending a press conference after the 2005 paper was published.

The panel recommended the university implement suitable corrective or disciplinary actions.


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