With a recent research supported by government-backed Riken research institute shown to have used falsified data, the institute vowed to continue research on stem cell to verify if the technique mentioned by researchers who had come under fire is still plausible. Despite withdrawing its support for the paper, the scandal has stained Riken’s credibility and president Ryoji Noyori will lead the efforts in trying to verify the technique.
Speaking at a news conference, Riken’s Center for Developmental Biology director Masatoshi Takeichi stressed that no conclusion has been made available yet on whether STAP cells actually exist. The center’s next research will focus on creating them from scratch and comparing them with purported existing STAP cells via genetic analysis. With the records found in the experiment notebooks unclear, researchers are unsure of what procedures have been used on the cells. Verifying these cells through the existing ones may not be useful and the research team might have to use STAP cells produced from scratch based on the recent techniques released last March 5.
Kyoto University professor Shinya Yamanaka, a pioneer in induced pluripotent stem (IPS) cells said he’d rather “continue to wait for an examination of how the research papers were written and the results of efforts to reproduce the experiment” before making a conclusion. In recent months, various researches detailing the discovery of new stem cells that could transform into other cells of the body have come out. However, reproducing the results of such experiments are still not successful.
[via Nikkei Asian Review]