Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Another chapter in the Korean cloning saga

Another article appeared today questioning the work of Korean scientist Hwang Woo-suk. He is the head scientist of the group that recently reported the first ever clonig of a dog in a paper on the journal Nature.

The current debate stems from inconsistencies in the article published in the journal Science titled "Patient-specific embryonic stem cells derived from human SCNT blastocysts". In the publication the team claimed that it had established Eleven hESC lines by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) of skin cells from patients with disease or injury into donated oocytes. Basically this is what we call "Therapeutic Cloning". All the authors were from Korea with the exception of Dr. Schatten from the US . Dr. Schatten recently made a number of public statements with regards to breaches in ethical standards such as not disclosing the fact that some of the lab techs from Dr. Woo-suk lab donated the eggs .
This is the clear example of a situation in which if one lies (or fails to disclose) on any aspects of a research project (even on things that may be immaterial to the final results) the whole research project becomes vulnerable to criticism.

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