Who is Hwang co-author Cibelli?

Dianne N. Irving
Copyright January 28, 2006
Reproduced with Permission

Despite the world-wide press coverage of South Korean Hwang's massive and historic scientific fraud scandal (except scant coverage in the U.S., including prolife), almost nothing has been reported about his U.S. co-authors and collaborators (of which there are many). One of those is Dr. Jose Cibelli, professor of animal biology (veterinarian) at Michigan State University. (Interestingly, none of these players hold Ph.D.'s in human embryology or human molecular genetics -- thus rendering them probably ignorant of even the basics.) Did you know that apparently MSU is now conducting its own investigation into Cibelli's possible involvement with Hwang, and that Cibelli has temporarily stepped down from his advisory role on the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) Scientific and Medical Accountability Working Group?

The CIRM was recently formed with the passage of California Proposition 71 -- led enthusiastically by Irving Weissman at Stanford University and Nobelist (and eugenicist) Paul Berg -- and just as enthusiastically supported (speaking of "accountability") by cloning colleagues Ian Wilmutt, Rudolf Jaenisch, Ronald MacKay, Gerald Schatten, Robert Lanza, and Michael West (the last two being co-authors on several of Cibelli's published research studies). Geographically, do they represent the various potential locations envisioned by Hwang and Schatten's "World Stem Cell Hub" poised to supply "patient-specific" stem cells to researchers and prospective patients world-wide?

Essentially, they have all just as enthusiastically embraced the same fake "science" as Hwang -- especially the false "therapeutic"/"reproductive" cloning and "totipotent"/"pluripotent" distinctions, that "therapeutic" cloning isn't really cloning, that the immediate cloned "embryo" that is the product of SCNT is just a "cell" and the 5-7 day blastocyst is just a "ball of cells" (thus all they are doing is "stem cell" research), that the product cloned is "virtually genetically identical" or a "twin" of the donor (because they ignore the presence of foreign mitochondrial genetic material from the "egg"used), that such "cloning" can be accomplished now with fewer donated oocytes from women, and that "patient-specific" stem cells can be produced that won't produce immune rejection reactions in the patients. All of these fake scientific claims are merely "pre-embryo substitutes" conjured up over the years to imply a "reduced moral status" for the early human being -- which makes donating, destroying and genetically tinkering with them ethically acceptable and free from guilt - and assures patents, Nobel Prizes, magic stock markets, and governments rolling in the dough. Unfortunately, quite a number of prominent prolife religious, "scholars" and politicians have adopted many of these same fake "scientific" claims. (See Irving articles at: http://www.lifeissues.net/section.php?topic=ir).

Again, Stanford University, "home" of the beleaguered journal Science that has received extensive criticism for publishing two of Hwang's fake research articles, is also the former institution of Dr. Clifford Grobstein of the McCormick/Grobstein "pre-embryo" fame, as well as many of the original West Coast Founders of bioethics. Indeed, Cibelli is also co-author with several noted Founders of bioethics, notably Art Caplan, Ronald Greene, and Lee Silver -- all of whom have published for years using false human embryology and creating "pre-embryo" substitutes in its place. (See Cibelli's Faculty Profile and search the hyperlinks at: http://www.ans.msu.edu/community/people/cibelli_jose.html). Naturally, the "ethicists" holding sway at the CIRM, e.g. Working Group Chair Bernard Lo, are also literally among those Founders of bioethics (along with several Third Generationers of bioethics). The serious question must be asked: Are these bioethicists simply apologists and promoters for this fake science -- just as they were for the McCormick/Grobstein "pre-embryo"? And why? Small world.

Below are just a few of the recent articles even available concerning Cibelli (or any of the other U.S. collaborators). Hopefully those scientists and journalists who are still miraculously intellectually honest and fundamentally good persons will come forward quickly to help us all sort out this global mess so severely affecting not only the integrity of science, medicine and the media, but also help such abject scientific fraud from being applied to innocent human embryos, trusting women and vulnerable patients globally -- even if they have to lose a few government grants and "colleagues" to do so.

(emphases added)


The State News [Michigan State University]
January 27, 2006

By Kristen Daum

WEB EXTRA: Investigation underway into MSU professor's role in falsified research

The university has started investigating an animal biotechnology professor's involvement with falsified research, MSU officials said.

Jose Cibelli reviewed a manuscript in 2003 for a research paper led by Woo-Suk Hwang, a former professor at Seoul National University in South Korea.

Hwang claimed he had cloned human stem cells, and his paper was published in the journal Science in 2004. Since Cibelli reviewed the manuscript, his name was also listed on the paper.

But an investigative panel from the South Korean university announced Jan. 10 that Hwang's claims were entirely fabricated, as well as several findings from a second paper that was published in the journal in 2005.

Cibelli called for the MSU investigation to clarify his involvement, because he wanted to "uphold the scientific integrity" of MSU and show university officials how he could not have known the manuscript was misleading just by looking at it at the time, he said.

He said he had no affiliation with Hwang's actual research process.

It is too early to have a timeline for MSU's investigation, because data and committees need to be organized, said Jeff Armstrong, dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. "The investigation is underway, and Dr. Cibelli has been extremely cooperative," Armstrong said.


U.S. NewsWire
January 20, 2006

To: National and State Desk

Contact: John M. Simpson of the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, 310-392-0522, ext. 317

Stem Cell Institute's Handling of Scandal-Plagued Advisor Demonstrates Preference for Secrecy

SANTA MONICA, Calif., Jan. 20 /U.S. Newswire/ -- The California stem cell institute's handling this week of the case of a key scientific advisor caught up in the Korean stem cell research scandal demonstrates its high-handed preference for secrecy, a consumer advocacy group said today.

"The stem cell institute just doesn't seem to understand that it's a state agency," said John M. Simpson, Stem Cell Project director for the Foundation of Taxpayer and Consumer Rights.

(FTCR) "They need to tell the public what's going on. Instead, when the facts are inconvenient, they stonewall or hope nobody will notice. Their behavior only undermines the institute's credibility and, sadly, the stem cell research projects they hope to sponsor."

FTCR explained what happened: Jose Cibelli, a stem cell researcher at the Michigan State University was a key scientific advisor on the stem cell institute's Scientific and Medical Accountability Working Group. Those are the advisors who are supposed to help draw up rules to ensure that stem cell research funded by Prop 71 is conducted ethically. In 2004 Cibelli was listed as co-author of a now debunked fraudulent scientific paper with Korea's celebrity stem cell researcher, Hwang Woo-Suk. It's not clear if Cibelli knew what Hwang did or was duped. His university is investigating his role in the scandal.

"However the investigation turns out, it's clear that Cibelli is not the right person to be advising California on ethical research standards," said Simpson.

The Sacramento Bee Editorial Page raised the Cibelli issue with the stem cell institute. The California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) on Wednesday told the paper that Cibelli had "voluntary withdrawn from his activities on the Standards Working Group, as of Tuesday."

As of Friday morning, the only indication of the situation on CIRM's website was a footnote on the posted list of working group members. It reads, "Voluntarily withdrawn from active membership until further notice."

Meanwhile the oversight committee's panel on governance plans to meet Friday, Jan. 27, in San Diego. "Appropriately," said Simpson, "Item four on the agenda is consideration of a policy for removal of working group members."

CIRM's disclosure in a footnote can be found at its website: (http://www.cirm.ca.gov/working_group/pdf/StdsWkngGpMbrs.pdf)


The Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights (FTCR) is California's leading nonpartisan consumer advocacy organization. For more information about stem research in California, go to: http://www.consumerwatchdog.org/healthcare/StemCell/ http://www.usnewswire.com/

© 2006 U.S. Newswire 202-347-2770/


The State News [Michigan State University]
January 12, 2006

Slight setback

Although breakthrough declared fake, stem cell research should continue slowly, through good scientific methods.

Almost two years ago, the news that human stem cells had been cloned sent reverberations around the world.

Scientists everywhere speculated about the impact South Korean scientist Woo-Suk Hwang's research could have had.

Now we know that some of what Hwang wrote, researched and presented was probably fake.

Hwang, a former professor at Seoul National University, published a paper in February 2004 in the research journal Science claiming that he and a colleague had created stem cell lines using a cloned embryo.

This week, a panel from the Seoul National University announced parts of his research were fabricated.

The news is disheartening, to say the least. It sets research on stem cells back and hurts and discredits the legitimate work of scientists everywhere.

What's worse is an MSU professor, Jose Cibelli, had his name on the report. Cibelli said he only read through Hwang's manuscript before it was submitted for publication.

Cibelli said he was not involved in the actual research and couldn't have known if Hwang faked it. MSU officials have promised to investigate the matter and should - as soon as possible.

But strange tales of cloning and stem cells aren't new.

Clonaid, a company founded by a man associated with a group called the Raelians (one of their definitive characteristics being their belief in aliens) claimed in December 2002 that it cloned a baby.

The verdict is still out on whether the baby was real, actually cloned or an alien. No one's actually seen this "baby."

Despite the setback in the stem cell research community, work involving stem cells shouldn't stop. Possible benefits that stem cell research could provide shouldn't be ignored because of one researcher's possible bad decision.

Cibelli said he hopes scientists will learn from these mistakes, and as a result, better research will be conducted in America.

Stem cell research will face tougher scrutiny, so scientists can't get away with what Hwang did. Caution must be taken to make sure scientists don't get the chance to publish fake research.

This type of highly controversial research shouldn't be rushed because scientists are eager to beat each other getting it out. Science shouldn't be a competition to receive the fame of being first. It's about getting the most accurate and safe research published and applied to medicine.

That's how some of the most important discoveries were made - through time.

If scientists want people to be persuaded that stem cell research and cloning could help in the future, they will need to present research through good science - research that is backed up and proven to be real.

Until then, it's back to the drawing board.


Sacramento Bee
January 20, 2006

Editorial: Stem cell fallout

The fraud perpetrated by South Korean scientist Hwang Woo-Suk is a setback for regenerative medicine, but it also serves as a rich learning opportunity for California's $3 billion stem cell research institute.

For the last two months, leaders of the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine have resisted calls to publicly review the South Korea scandal and ensure that its ethics standards are adequate to avoid similar misdeeds. Now we know why.

As it turns out, an ethics adviser for the California institute, Jose Cibelli, co-authored a 2004 paper by Hwang that has been under suspicion for weeks and now has been shown to include fabricated data. Michigan State University, where Cibelli works, is investigating Cibelli's role in co-authoring the 2004 paper, in which Hwang made a monumental claim - now discredited - to have cloned a human embryo and extracted stem cells from it.

After inquiries from this page, the California institute disclosed Wednesday that Cibelli will not be advising the institute while the investigation continues.

"Until that issue is resolved, Cibelli has voluntarily withdrawn from his activities on the Standards Working Group, as of Tuesday of this week," said institute spokeswoman Nicole Pagano. She said that Cibelli himself had requested the Michigan State investigation; a spokeswoman for the university declined to comment on any aspect of the investigation.

The study that Cibelli authored with Hwang, published in the journal Science in March of 2004, was a blockbuster in the field of stem cell research.

In the paper, Hwang, Cibelli and other co-authors claimed they had cloned a human embryo and extracted specialized stem cells from it. The breakthrough gave hope to diseased patients that scientists could soon create stem cells tailored to a person's unique DNA. The cells could then be transplanted into a patient with a reduced risk of immune rejection.

Cibelli fed these hopes by claiming that South Korea was outpacing the United States in stem cell research.

"They have all the know-how, the resources, the money and they have a law that protects their work," Cibelli told the Associated Press last year. "I don't see any reason these guys will slow down."

Last week, however, a panel at Seoul National University concluded that Hwang falsified many of the results. Science then retracted the 2004 study.

Hwang "did not have any proof to show that cloned embryonic stem cells were ever created," the panel said in its report. "The 2004 paper was written on fabricated data to show that the stem match the DNA of the provider although they didn't."

For now, it is unclear if Cibelli knew about Hwang's fabrications or simply was duped. Either way, the incident doesn't speak well of his ability to set and enforce rigorous standards on scientists who hope to receive grants from the California institute.

One key issue for California is how these scientists will obtain human eggs for research and ensure that women aren't exploited or endangered while providing their ovum.

Hwang claimed his laboratory followed the highest ethical standards in obtaining eggs, but he lied about this, too. Junior researchers - who could easily be coerced by Hwang - provided some of the eggs. Investigators are examining if others were purchased on the black market for eggs.

In a Dec. 29 editorial, this page criticized the institute Standards Working Group for not delving into the South Korean scandal. The working group's chair, Bernard Lo, sent us a highly misleading letter (published Jan. 8) that suggested the working group had engaged in such a discussion at its Dec. 1 meeting, even though it hadn't.

Much more has been disclosed about Hwang since that meeting. As a result, Lo has no excuse not to have a full discussion about the scandal on Jan. 30. That's when the Standards Working Group is scheduled to meet again - without Cibelli.


The Chronicle of Higher Education
January 27, 2006

By Lila Guterman

Silent Scientist Under Fire: the American Collaborator of a Disgraced South Korean Is Keeping Mum

Just a few months ago, a collaboration between two prominent scientists from opposite sides of the world promised to change the future of medicine: A Korean and an American together claimed to have cloned human embryos from which they had developed stem-cell colonies tailored to individual patients.

Their relationship was so close that they called each other "my brother."

Now a scandal has sundered that fraternal bond. The South Korean scientist, Woo Suk Hwang, stands disgraced after a panel convened by Seoul National University concluded that many of his results had been faked. Dr. Hwang has apologized to his country, blamed other researchers for the deception, and resigned from the university. Now he faces criminal charges.

But what of his American collaborator and friend? The University of Pittsburgh has not finished its investigation into Gerald P. Schatten's role in the fraudulent study, which has now been retracted from the journal Science. Since December, when the Korean panel declared the work on human stem cells a fraud, Mr. Schatten has not spoken to the news media. He also would not comment for this article.

The future of Mr. Schatten's career -- and the millions of dollars in research grants he has received -- hangs in the balance. Many of those closest to him have adopted his strategy of silence. Others have rallied in defense of an ambitious, outgoing scientist who they say was simply too trusting of his collaborators.

Duane A. Compton, a professor of biochemistry at Dartmouth Medical School, has collaborated with Mr. Schatten on three papers in recent years. He says of Mr. Schatten and others in the Pitt laboratory: "I have only found them to be honest and ethical people. My interpretation of this is that they were fooled by the Korean group as much as the rest of us were."

No one contacted by The Chronicle believes that Mr. Schatten helped create the fake data, or even that he knew about the fraud. But many insist that because he was listed as senior author on the paper, he must take responsibility for the data it contains.

"I think he made a big mistake by putting his name on the paper," says Barry D. Bavister, a professor of reproductive biology at the University of New Orleans.

For now, the gregarious Mr. Schatten has gone mute, only perpetuating the mystery behind the fraud.

A Steady Rise

Mr. Schatten is a professor of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive sciences, as well as of cell biology and physiology, at Pitt's School of Medicine. He is also director of the division of developmental and regenerative medicine there.

Those who know him describe Mr. Schatten as enthusiastic about science and about the people he works with. A trim 56-year-old, Mr. Schatten has curly gray hair, a beard, and a tendency to smile for cameras.

His backers, including elite scientists in stem-cell biology, seem nearly as fond of him as he had been of Dr. Hwang.

"I was impressed by the fact that he seems to be an earnest, caring individual," says Evan Y. Snyder, director of the program in stem cells and regeneration at the Burnham Institute, a research organization in La Jolla, Calif., who got to know Mr. Schatten in the months before the scandal.

Mr. Schatten's ascent to scientific prestige and to worldwide attention was gradual and steady. Even as a boy, he was fascinated with reproduction. He would examine the sperm and eggs of animals he found in New York's East River, near his childhood home. "Masturbating a horseshoe crab takes a special technique, but it's worth learning," he told The Guardian in 2003. "The sperm are amazing."

He studied zoology at the University of California at Berkeley. As a graduate student, he stayed at Berkeley to work with a renowned cell biologist, Daniel Mazia, who studied how cells divide. Mr. Schatten received his Ph.D. in 1975.

Florida State University gave Mr. Schatten his first faculty job, where he focused on sea-urchin reproduction. One of his early graduate students was Ronald D. Balczon, who is now an associate professor of cell biology and neuroscience at the University of South Alabama. "He was wonderful. He was a brilliant man," Mr. Balczon recalls. "He had more energy than anybody."

In the late 1980s, Mr. Schatten moved to the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where he would have easier access to experimental mammals, says Mr. Balczon. (Mr. Bavister, of New Orleans, was at Wisconsin then and helped recruit Mr. Schatten.) His research turned largely to the mysteries of mouse reproduction.

It was at Wisconsin that Mr. Schatten unwittingly experienced a biomedical scandal at close range. In 1993 and 1994, he experimented on human eggs and embryos that he had received from a fertility specialist at the University of California at Irvine. In 1995 that researcher was revealed to have taken the tissues without the donors' consent.

The California doctor had told Mr. Schatten that the eggs had been collected properly, and a Wisconsin investigation found no improprieties in Mr. Schatten's work. The experience apparently disturbed him. "I'm shocked and I'm sickened for everybody," he told the Wisconsin State Journal, a local newspaper.

As Mr. Schatten's interests continued toward ever-more-complex animals, he began to study monkeys. In 1997 he took a position at the Oregon Regional Primate Research Center (now the Oregon National Primate Research Center).

He began there in laboratory space neighboring that of Don P. Wolf, a prominent researcher who was trying to clone monkeys. The two feuded, however, and after only two months, Mr. Wolf took his operation to another floor, while Mr. Schatten pursued similar research goals.

Mr. Wolf declines to discuss his relationship with Mr. Schatten. "Everybody recognizes that we had a falling-out," he says. "I just need to keep my nose clean."

Neither researcher succeeded in cloning monkeys, but in 2000 Mr. Schatten created the world's first genetically modified primate. The rhesus monkey was born with a jellyfish gene in its cells.

When Science published word of the discovery, in 2001, Mr. Schatten was introduced to the news-media spotlight (The Chronicle, January 12, 2001). Later that year, he received and accepted a job offer from Pittsburgh.

Monkey Work

At Pitt he continued trying to clone monkeys and produce stem cells, hoping to demonstrate with monkeys whether embryonic stem cells could live up to their medical promise.

"That is difficult work to get funded; it's difficult to get the material for," says Peter J. Donovan, a stem-cell researcher who is moving from the Johns Hopkins University to Irvine. (Mr. Donovan and Mr. Schatten together recently won a major grant from the National Institutes of Health.)

Monkeys are more expensive than mice but are genetically much more similar to human beings, he explains. "It requires someone with a lot of energy and drive to gather the resources to do that kind of work. That's one of his great qualities."

But Mr. Schatten still failed to clone a monkey. In 2003 he and colleagues at Pitt and at Dartmouth Medical School outlined the challenges in Science: "With current approaches, nuclear transfer to produce embryonic stem cells in nonhuman primates may prove difficult -- and reproductive cloning unachievable."

He also became interested in working with human embryonic stem cells. But he was discouraged by the regulations that prevent researchers from using federal grant money to study all but a few already-existing stem-cell lines. Mr. Balczon, his former graduate student, says Mr. Schatten began traveling to California, England, and elsewhere, looking for collaborators where regulations were more liberal or other funds were available. He first visited the Seoul lab in 2003, says Dr. Snyder, of the Burnham Institute.

Dr. Hwang sought Mr. Schatten's advice, according to Dr. Snyder, because of the American's experience working with nonhuman primates. "It was kind of a natural step for both of them," says the Burnham researcher.

In 2004 the South Korean group published an article in Science claiming that it had succeeded in extracting stem cells from cloned human embryos (The Chronicle, February 20, 2004). Mr. Schatten was not an author of that paper, but another American researcher, Jose B. Cibelli, a professor of animal science and physiology at Michigan State University, was listed as second-to-last author.

The researchers said they had used a gentler technique, one that got them past the hurdles that had stymied Mr. Schatten's efforts with monkeys. Mr. Schatten's group then used the Korean technique on monkeys to clone embryos and extract stem cells. He reported the results in the journal Developmental Biology in December 2004. The paper's authors included South Koreans and Americans.

Meanwhile, Dr. Hwang and his group were working to improve the efficiency of their method. The South Korean researchers amazed the world when they -- and Mr. Schatten -- reported in Science, in May 2005, that they had produced 11 new colonies of human embryonic stem cells, all generated from patients with diseases or injuries (The Chronicle, May 27, 2005).

Joy and Pain

A period of great excitement followed for both Mr. Schatten and Dr. Hwang. They became involved in setting up the World Stem Cell Hub, which would distribute Dr. Hwang's stem cells for other researchers to experiment with. In August they published a paper in the journal Nature saying they had created the world's first cloned dog.

Insoo Hyun, an assistant professor of bioethics at Case Western Reserve University, visited Dr. Hwang's lab last summer for three months. "Everything looked terrific," he recalls. When Mr. Schatten came to visit, he says, "It looked like they all were the best of friends. Hwang and Schatten were referring to each other as brothers."

But in November, Mr. Schatten publicly ended his association with Dr. Hwang, telling Science that he had been misled by his Korean collaborators. He said the Korean researchers had taken eggs from women in an unethical manner -- an eerie echo of the Irvine scandal 10 years earlier.

Mr. Schatten also e-mailed a group of stem-cell experts, says Sean J. Morrison, an associate professor of cell and developmental biology at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, telling them that the Koreans had deceived him and that he was ending his collaboration. "The e-mail had pretty tough language that seemed out of place based on the facts that were publicly available at the time," says Mr. Morrison.

In mid-December, Mr. Schatten asked Science to remove his name from the 2005 paper, a request that the journal declined (The Chronicle, December 14, 2005).

In his last interview to date, a few days later, he told The New York Times, "I still remain totally optimistic and convinced about all of this. I'm optimistic that at some point, I hope sooner than later, this is brought to a satisfactory conclusion that I think will be constructive for everyone, including the man I still think of as my best friend."

The South Korean panel concluded in late December that fabrication had taken place in the studies behind both Science papers. The journal retracted both papers in January.

Pittsburgh began investigating Mr. Schatten, at his own request, with a six-person panel that first met on December 14. Dr. Cibelli, of Michigan State, also requested an investigation into his own role in the 2004 paper, according to a spokeswoman at that university.

The Pittsburgh panel expects to conclude its work in February, according to a university spokeswoman. It is investigating the 2005 Science paper and the Nature paper about the cloned dog, even though the South Korean panel found the animal to be a real clone. The Pittsburgh panel is not investigating the 2004 paper on monkeys, in Developmental Biology. "I don't think there's any reason to question the authenticity of the data in that paper," says Dartmouth's Mr. Compton. "The experiments were performed in Pittsburgh.

As the scandal built, Mr. Schatten maintained his silence. The South Korean press did not.

Many unflattering articles have appeared in that country's news media, painting Mr. Schatten as an opportunist who grabbed fame by associating with Dr. Hwang but then tried to dodge responsibility.

Tipped off by an article in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the Korean press discovered in January that Mr. Schatten and two colleagues at Pitt had chosen not to credit their Asian collaborators when they applied, in April 2004, for a U.S. patent on a cloning technique that resembles the Korean one.

Dr. Hwang's group applied for intellectual-property protection in December 2004, sending its claim to the World Intellectual Property Organization, which establishes inventors' claims internationally. The Koreans' application did not mention Mr. Schatten.

The two scientists' staking separate claims is perplexing to American researchers. But an explanation, as well as answers to other questions, will not be forthcoming until Mr. Schatten or Dr. Hwang chooses to provide them.

It was Mr. Schatten's severing of his collaboration with Dr. Hwang -- despite the close relationship between them -- that helped spark investigations of the Korean research. Some American researchers praise Mr. Schatten as "basically a whistle-blower," says William R. Brinkley, senior vice president for graduate sciences at Baylor College of Medicine, who has known Mr. Schatten for decades.

Mr. Brinkley also thinks that Mr. Schatten was not acting out of selfishness in his interactions with the Koreans: "I never thought of him as anyone who was trying to grab power or be a showperson in the field," he says.

Dr. Snyder agrees: "Quite frankly, he never wanted to take credit for the technological advancements of the Korean group. He always said, 'These are the guys who accomplished it.'"

An Undeserving Author?

Mr. Schatten's public modesty has led many American researchers to ask, Just what did Mr. Schatten do? Did he do enough to justify authorship of the now-retracted paper?

Many believe that he performed some analysis of the data and wrote the paper in English. (A member of the Korean team, Curie Ahn, declined a Chronicle request for comment on Mr. Schatten's role.) If all he did was to write the paper, he should not have been named an author, according to convention. Mr. Bavister, of New Orleans, helped write the 2004 Science paper in English for the Korean group. "That alone does not deserve co-authorship, which is why I'm not a co-author," he says. The acknowledgments in that paper mention Mr. Bavister's help.

But Mr. Schatten's name appears last among the authors of the 2005 Science paper, a position normally reserved for the senior author who oversees the work and vouches for its accuracy. "As senior author, he's responsible for everything," says Rudolf Jaenisch, a professor of biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

"There's a lesson here," says Mr. Brinkley. "We should all be very, very cautious about lending our name to publications."

Still, even scientists intimately involved in experiments might not be aware of fraud on their watch, particularly in the context of studies in which many scientists contribute to different parts of the research. The 2005 Science paper had 25 authors. "For someone who wants to deceive, it's actually fairly easy," says Mr. Donovan, of Johns Hopkins.

"The main thing he's guilty of," says Mr. Morrison, of the University of Michigan, "is a little greed, where the Koreans made this offer to make him senior author on a landmark paper, even though he didn't really deserve the credit for it. Now, it's also true that he doesn't deserve the blame."

While the Pitt investigation goes on, Mr. Schatten has continued to work in his laboratory, according to a Pitt spokeswoman. Only one scientist contacted by The Chronicle, Mr. Donovan, had heard from Mr. Schatten since the scandal broke. "He's very depressed," says Mr. Donovan. "I think he feels that he was completely duped by Dr. Hwang."

Mr. Schatten's career is likely to suffer even if Pitt finds him blameless. Scientists may be reluctant to work with him, agencies may hesitate to sponsor his research, and journals may think twice before publishing his papers. "If you ask the question, What does a scientist have? He has a reputation. That's all you have," says Dr. Jaenisch.

"I think he'll always be looked at with a skewed eye," says Dr. Snyder, of the Burnham Institute. "On the other hand, I think, with time, people will come to recognize that he probably was not involved in the actual fabrication -- that he was a victim."

Perhaps time will heal wounds. But it may not solve mysteries. Why the researchers committed fraud, who did what, and what could have been done to prevent it have yet to become clear.

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