[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 105 (Thursday, May 31, 2012)]
[Pages 32116-32117]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-13126]



Office of the Secretary

Findings of Research Misconduct

AGENCY: Office of the Secretary, HHS.

ACTION: Notice.


SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that the Office of Research Integrity 
(ORI) has taken final action in the following case:
    Juan Ma, Ph.D., Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical

[[Page 32117]]

School: Based on evidence and findings of an inquiry conducted jointly 
by Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) and Harvard Medical School (HMS) 
and additional evidence gathered by the Office of Research Integrity 
(ORI) during its oversight review, ORI found that Dr. Juan Ma, former 
Research Fellow, BWU, engaged in research misconduct in research 
supported by National Cancer Institute (NCI), National Institutes of 
Health (NIH), grant 5 P01 CA120964.
    ORI found that the Respondent knowingly and intentionally 
fabricated and falsified data in portions of figures in an unpublished 
manuscript titled ``TSC1 loss synergizes with KRAS activation in lung 
cancer development and confers rapamycin sensitivity'' by M.-C. Liang, 
J. Ma, L. Chen, P. Kozlowski, W. Qin, D. Li, T. Shimamura, M.L. Sos, R. 
Thomas, D. Neil Hayes, M. Meyerson, D.J. Kwiatkowski, and K.-K. Wong, 
submitted to the Journal of Clinical Investigation (JCI) on August 5, 
2008, and in revised form on October 21, 2008 (hereafter referred to as 
the ``JCI manuscript''). Specifically, Respondent committed research 
misconduct by knowingly and intentionally:
     Falsifying and/or fabricating those portions of the 
immunoblots in JCI manuscript Figure 1C, to show that in 
TsclL/L and TscL/+ mouse lung cancer cells 
compared with KRAS induced lung cancer cells, there were reduced Tsc1 
and Tsc2 protein levels, reduced phospho-AKT-S473 levels, and increased 
phospho-S6-S249/244 levels, consistent with the hypothesis that 
introduction of the Tsc1L gene resulted in mTORC1 
     Falsifying and/or fabricating those portions of the 
immunoblots in Figure 3A of the JCI manuscript to show data consistent 
with the hypothesized TNS null signaling lung tumor cells: Functional 
loss of Tsc1/Tsc2, high phospho-S6-S249/244 levels, and low phospho-
AKT-S473, with recovery of phospho-AKT-S473 after Rapamycin treatment.
     Falsifying and/or fabricating those portions of the 
immunoblots in Figure 3B of the JCI manuscript by (i) adding a band in 
the Tsc2 lane for control cells for the IP blot, and (ii) weakening the 
Tsc2 band for one of the tumor lysates.
     Falsifying and/or fabricating immunoblots in Figures 5A 
and 5B of the JCI manuscript so that the data appeared to indicate that 
TSC reconstitution in TSC null (TNS) cell lines led to reduction of 
pS6-S240/244 levels during serum deprivation (in the absence of growth 
factors), as well as increased pAKT(S473) levels in response to serum 
     The JCI manuscript was accepted by JCI on December 8, 
2008, but it was withdrawn by one of the authors on January 6, 2009.
    ORI found that Respondent's knowing and intentional falsification 
and fabrication of data constitutes research misconduct within the 
meaning of 42 CFR 93.103.
    The following administrative actions have been implemented for a 
period of three (3) years, beginning on May 12, 2012:
    (1) Any institution that submits an application for U.S. Public 
Health Service (PHS) support for a research project on which 
Respondent's participation is proposed or that uses him in any capacity 
on PHS-supported research must concurrently submit a plan for 
supervision of his duties to the funding agency for approval; the 
supervisory plan must be designed to ensure the scientific integrity of 
his research contribution; Respondent must ensure that a copy of the 
supervisory plan is also submitted to ORI by the institution; 
Respondent will not participate in any PHS-supported research until 
such a supervisory plan is submitted to ORI;
    (2) Respondent will ensure that any institution employing him 
submits, in conjunction with application for PHS funds or any report, 
manuscript, or abstract of PHS-funded research in which he is involved, 
a certification that the data provided by him are accurately reported 
in the application or report; Respondent must ensure that the 
institution send the certification to ORI; this certification shall be 
submitted no later than one month before funding and concurrently with 
any report, manuscript, or abstract; and
    (3) Respondent is prohibited from serving in any advisory capacity 
to PHS, including but not limited to service on any PHS advisory 
committee, board, and/or peer review committee, or as a consultant.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Director, Division of Investigative 
Oversight, Office of Research Integrity, 1101 Wootton Parkway, Suite 
750, Rockville, MD 20852, (240) 453-8800.

John Dahlberg,
Director, Division of Investigative Oversight, Office of Research 
[FR Doc. 2012-13126 Filed 5-30-12; 8:45 am]