By Ophelia Garrett
Recent allegations reveal that key images from one of the most cited research papers on Alzheimer’s disease produced this century might have been intentionally fabricated. If the allegations are true, the research paper caused scientists to waste years and hundreds of millions of dollars worth of taxpayer-funded research into the seventh leading cause of death in the United States, according to Daily Wire.
Harvard University’s Dennis Selkoe, who was an advocate of the research that neuroscientist Sylvain Lesné of the University of Minnesota conducted, concluded in reviewing the images that there were “certainly at least 12 or 15 images where I would agree that there is no other explanation” other than the images were intentionally doctored, which he called “very worrisome.”
The report noted that the implication of the suspected fraudulent work means that hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer funds from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) might have been wasted, and that for sixteen years the entire scientific field have been pointed in the wrong direction while searching for a cure for Alzheimer’s. The report noted that thousands of studies were based on the study in question, and that the images “appeared to have composed figures by piecing together parts of photos from different experiments,” according to Elisabeth Bik, a molecular biologist.
Numerous papers by Lesné have been flagged during the investigation for possible instances of fraud, which have led to corrections that have also been problematic.
“The obtained experimental results might not have been the desired results, and that data might have been changed to … better fit a hypothesis.” - Elisabeth Bik