Haruko Obokata

Haruko Obokata2 posts
23 Jul, 2014

‘Injured’ by NHK reporters

Obokata is injured in an incident involving NHK employees, as four or five reporters and a camera crew from the state-owned broadcaster question her in the lobby of a hotel where she has fled after being pursued by a motorcycle on her way home from the Riken institute. She refuses to answer the questions and staff help her to escape the reporters, but she is apparently injured in the resulting scuffle and is later diagnosed with a sprained neck and right elbow that will take two weeks to heal. On the implications for her work to verify stimulus-triggered acquisition of pluripotency (STAP) stem cell research:

The injury to my right hand will hinder the experiments. It’s very frustrating.

2 Jul, 2014

Nature retracts papers

Nature retracts two high-profile papers that claimed a major advance in the field of stem cells, after questions arise over whether the technique of creating Stimulus-Triggered Acquisition of Pluripotency (Stap) cells by dipping skin and blood in acid is genuine. Retraction:

The episode has further highlighted flaws in Nature’s procedures and in the procedures of the institutions that publish with us […] All co-authors of both papers have finally concluded that they cannot stand behind the papers, and hve decided to retract them.

The papers themselves have now been clearly watermarked to highlight their retracted status, but will remain hosted on Nature’s website, as is consistent with our retraction policy. (In our opinion, to take down retracted papers from journal websites amounts to an attempt to rewrite history, and makes life needlessly difficult for those wishing to learn from such episodes.)

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