Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Pittsburgh stem cell worker Jong-hyuk Park punished for fraud

In January 2007 (one year after the Hwang fraud unraveled), Jong-hyuk Park was found guilty of deliberately falsifying photographic images in an unpublished manuscript circulated to his laboratory colleagues (destined for the journal Nature, entitled "Rhesus Embryonic Stem Cells Established by Nuclear Transfer: Tetraploid ESCs Differ from Fertilized Ones."), and attempting to destroy the evidence of his misconduct. He has been barred from applying or receiving federal grants, contracts, or loans for three years.

At the time of the fraud, Park was working as a postdoc under the supervision of Gerald Schatten (University of Pittsburgh) and Park had previously worked with Hwang Woo Suk. Specifically, Park worked on federally funded experiments under Schatten's supervision at Magee-Women's Research Institute, which is separate from the University of Pittsburgh, from fall 2005 through early 2006, exactly the time that Hwang's work in South Korea unraveled.

The ORI investigation of the NIH-supported work was conducted over three months early in 2006, but the findings were not disclosed until the beginning of 2007 because the Office of Research Integrity had not completed its own review. [look


Of the Hwang scandal itself, Money.cnn wrote:

But far from discrediting the field of stem-cell research, the scandal has juiced up the race for cloning patents and helped make California the vortex of research in the area.

IPBiz points out to the reader that money.cnn is talking about "the race for cloning patents, not the race for cures or the race to heal spinal injury victims. Think about that.


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