Liar, liar, researcher on fire
Dr. Anil Potti from Duke University had discovered a revolutionary treatment that tailored chemotherapy to a cancer patient's individual genetics. It promised to be an amazing breakthrough. Papers were published in prestigious journals and desperate patients signed up for the clinical trials. But there was something wrong.
First, there were problems with the data that proved the treatments could work - outside experts found significant errors. And then Dr. Joseph Nevins, who ran the Nevins Lab at Duke and was Dr. Anil Potti's mentor, discovered something about Dr. Potti's Rhodes scholarship:
Reporter Scott Pelley: You asked him about it?Dr. Joseph Nevins then reviewed the data and found it had been manipulated to show the treatment worked. It didn't.
Nevins: Certainly I asked him about it.
Pelley: What did he say?
Nevins: He said that while it wasn't the Rhodes scholar as we know the Rhodes scholar, it was a fellowship from Australia from a group of Rhodes scholars in Australia. So, a stretch of the truth.
Pelley: Was that the moment when you realized?
Nevins: Amazingly, I was still hanging on to the notion of "there must be a good explanation here." This was--
Pelley: Why were you deluding yourself at that point in time? What is it that you want to believe?
Nevins: I want to believe that somebody that I had trusted, that was a colleague for the last four, five years, someone that I viewed as a friend, was who I thought they were. And then you're faced with the reality of you've been deceived.
Deception at Duke
Deception at Duke, CBS News>>