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Science and Engineering Ethics

, Volume 23, Issue 4, pp 1199–1205 | Cite as

Institutional Responsibility and the Flawed Genomic Biomarkers at Duke University: A Missed Opportunity for Transparency and Accountability

  • David L. DeMetsEmail author
  • Thomas R. Fleming
  • Gail Geller
  • David F. Ransohoff
Commentary

Abstract

When there have been substantial failures by institutional leadership in their oversight responsibility to protect research integrity, the public should demand that these be recognized and addressed by the institution itself, or the funding bodies. This commentary discusses a case of research failures in developing genomic predictors for cancer risk assessment and treatment at a leading university. In its review of this case, the Office of Research Integrity, an agency within the US Department of Health and Human Services, focused their report entirely on one individual faculty member and made no comment on the institution’s responsibility and its failure to provide adequate oversight and investigation. These actions missed an important opportunity to emphasize the institution’s critical responsibilities in oversight of research integrity and the importance of institutional transparency and accountability.

Keywords

Genomic predictors Research fraud Institutional review Office of Research Integrity 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biostatistics and Medical InformaticsUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Department of BiostatisticsUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA
  3. 3.Department of MedicineJohns Hopkins School of MedicineBaltimoreUSA
  4. 4.School of MedicineUniversity of North Carolina-Chapel HillChapel HillUSA

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