An assistant professor of biomedical sciences at Iowa State University resigned after he falsely claimed rabbit blood was a viable AIDS vaccine.
Dr. Dong-Pyou Han created bogus research to obtain $19 million in federal research grants from the National Instituted of Health, said James Bradac, who heads AIDS research at the NIH.
Han mixed human blood components with rabbit blood to make it appear as though his vaccine was fighting HIV infection.
The rest of his research team, led by biomedical professor Michael Cho, reportedly had no knowledge of what Han had done.
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The group’s finding raised suspicion when it could not be replicated by other scientists.
"It's difficult to pull this off and it's difficult not to be detected," Bradac said. "This went on for several years, and it wasn’t detected until January 2013."
An NIH investigation found that the rabbit serum contained human antibodies.
He resigned from his position in October and has agreed not to seek government contracts for three years, according to a Federal Register report.