Stem cell scientist reportedly agrees to retract controversial paper

Japanese scientist Haruko Obokata, who led researchers reporting that dipping adult cells in acid could change them into stem cells, has agreed to retract one of the Jan. 30 Nature papers describing the result, according to news reports.

Questions about figures in the papers and the technique were first raised in February, and Japan’s RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology, where Obokata works, found her guilty of scientific misconduct in April.

Two of Obokata’s ten coauthors have also reportedly agreed to retract the paper. Nature usually requires consent from all authors to retract a paper and is conducting its own evaluation of the work.

photo of Ashley Yeager

Ashley Yeager is the associate news editor at Science News. She has worked at The Scientist, the Simons Foundation, Duke University and the W.M. Keck Observatory, and was the web producer for Science News from 2013 to 2015. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and a master’s degree in science writing from MIT.

More Stories from Science News on Science & Society

From the Nature Index

Paid Content