Education and Research
Be weary of some scientific research results as renowned Danish University brain scientist suspected of fake research
Wednesday, 08 August 2012
There has emerged a scandal at the University of Copenhagen, in Denmark
as a Danish brain scientist, Milena Penkowa identified as a future
Nobel Prize winner and who has received millions of research prize
money seems to have had a research based on deliberate fraud, an expert
An international expert panel, led by Austrian Professor Hans Lassmann
from the University of Vienna, who examined Penkowas research points to
irregularities in 15 out of 79 scientific articles examined, according
to report from University of Copenhagen.
The expert panel report has now been made public and Penkowa is
now suspected of scientific misconduct in the 15 Articles which Penkowa
either co-author or was a lead author. According to the university, the
panel has raised suspicions of fictional animals, manipulation of data,
falsification of results and did not perform control experiments in
another 15 of Penkowas scientific articles.
Among other things, Penkowa stated that she made use of 700
experimental mice in an article from 2002, but the Panel find it hard
to believe that the number may have been as large, but rather
they believe that that it was about 20 or so.
But it's not just Penkowa who is receiving the criticism. The
University of Copenhagen, is also on the spot from the panel of experts
who believe that they should have identified and be suspicions of
cheating long before.
In what is being considered as the greatest scandal of Copenhagen
University's 526-year history, Milena Penkowas, research which all
evidence show that it has been based on deliberate fraud started when
she was to received her doctoral thesis back in 2003. She failed her
initial viva due to lack of prove of sources and related documentation.
But after the intervention of the president of the university,
her thesis was approved and Penkowas (Pictured above ) fake
career took off.
On aspect to prove that she was a terrible liar was what the Swedish
daily, Sydsvenska Dagbladet wrote that Penkowa said when she had
difficulty obtaining documentation and prove of source when she was
defending her fake PhD thesis. She said then that she was "devastated
when her mother and sister died in a car accident".
As such she could not go out to get the data that she had used. But
when Penkowa in 2009 received an elite research prize of Dkr1.1 million
from the Danish Princess Mary's Fund, both her mother and sister
were there to celebrate her success with her.
"I greeted them both but I was not aware that they were dead," says
Prof. Elisabeth Bock, one of the researchers who had suspected that
Penkowas research findings were false to Swedish daily, Sydsvenskan.
Thing really started getting sour for Penkowas when three of the
student she was supervising were trying to do their dissertation
and carried out the rat experiments she had done in one of her write
ups. It proved to be impossible. The students raised the alarm and the
snowball started rolling.
At the beginning of 2010, Milena Penkowa was suspended from the
university and was reported to the police accused of serious document
fraud, embezzlement and false accusation against one of her students.
It was also revealed that the laboratory in Spain where the rat
experiments should have been carried out was invented. Penkowa was
sentenced to three months' conditional imprisonment.
But Penkowa himself denies the allegations of fraud. She wrote on the
website hjerneeksperten.dk that it may well have been an errors in her
research but that there is no question of deliberate fraud.
"As I said earlier, there is no doubt that inadvertent errors may have
occurred along the way, since I in 1993 began working in the laboratory
(University of Copenhagen) And I will be the first to regret deeply .
"Deliberate dishonesty 'is rather a quite different matter, and I have
never committed," Penkowa wrote.
Penkowa also says that she had not had the opportunity to present the
documents for their research that the panel of experts believed were
missing because she did not have access to the university since her
section was shutdown in 2010, writes teh Danish paper Berlingske.
by Scancomark.se Team
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