Hwang May Have Faked Embryonic Stem Cell Research Papers, Not Cells

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Apr 4, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Hwang May Have Faked Embryonic Stem Cell Research Papers, Not Cells Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
April 4, 2006

Seoul, South Korea (LifeNews.com) — South Korean government prosecutors have not released the results of their probe into the fabricated embryonic stem cell research conducted by Hwang Woo-suk’s research team. However, a preliminary report indicates Hwang did not fake the embryonic stem cells but used the false data in the two papers his team published.

Prosecutors have tentatively concluded that Kim Sun-jong, a lead partner with Hwang, substituted normal embryonic stem cells for the ones that were supposed to have been patient-specific but died int he research process.

If that claim is true, Hwang Woo-suk may not have known about the faked cells, but used the information about them in the scientific papers thinking his research had been successful.

KBS TV reported Monday that Kim told the South Korea officials that he manipulated the stem cells himself.

The Korean television station cautioned that the government has not released its official conclusions and, after talking with more people with knowledge about the fraud, that assessment could change.

South Korean prosecutors are also still looking into allegations that Hwang embezzled $6 million in public and private donations meant for research. Police have raided a secretary’s house and a research lab at Seoul National University to gather more evidence in the case.

Meanwhile, KBS News reports Hwang has received job offers from firms in other nations to conduct research. It reported that Hwang apparently believes he needs to conduct research elsewhere and then return to South Korea to be able to restore his reputation.