• Sweden's news in English

Gothenburg scientist 'manipulated results'

AFP/The Local · 17 Sep 2010, 07:12

Published: 17 Sep 2010 07:12 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Suchitra Holgersson, a post-transplant immunologist, manipulated contributions from three doctoral students on her research team and of using unverified information in a 2005 article published in the medical review "Blood", according to the ethics committee of the Swedish Research Council.

"We can no longer trust her," committee head Jan Stålhammar told AFP.

"Due to all indications and all the proof that has emerged, it is not possible to think the results were manipulated by anyone but her," he added.

Holgersson, who was born in India in 1961, faced accusations from "a number of people, on numerous occasions," Stålhammar said.

The research council had suspended her financing, he said, adding however that he was not in a position to say if she would face other repercussions.

The ethics committee had earlier this week written to Holgersson's previous employer, the Karolinska Institute (KI) in Stockholm, and to the Gothenburg University, where she has worked since September 2008, to say it had on four counts found her "guilty of aggravated scientific dishonesty."

It also said in its report the scientist had shown "very serious scientific dishonesty by trying to mislead the expert committee during the probe by using fake documents."

The ethics committee had launched its probe more than two years ago on KI's request following complaints by the doctoral students, Stålhammar said.

Story continues below…

The committee had twice confronted Holgersson, who denies the allegations, he said.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

10:31 September 17, 2010 by Audrian
A common problem with scientists desperate to be famous.
11:22 September 17, 2010 by Åskar
She hasn't published anything under her own name in Sweden.
12:27 September 17, 2010 by Nomark
This is an extremely uncommon problem at western institutions. Usually it has no lasting repercussions, other than for the reputation of those who fabricate data and, unfortunately, their colleagues and institution. If the "work" makes an impact then others attempt to reproduce their work and build on it. It is at that stage that problems emerge either because the reproduction experiments fail or because other scientists spot irregularities in the original paper which are likely due to fraud.

*If* it is the case that concerns about this person had been raised repeatedly and ignored then the university should hold an independent investigation to discovery why it went on so long. It should also offer an apology and compensation to the doctoral students. *

As a scientist, I'd rather scratch my eyeballs with sandpaper than ever fabricate/manipulate data. Fortunately, I work in a field where this type of rare occurence is almost impossible to take place. Work is largely reproduced by collaborators even before it gets published and there are competing experiments who would love nothing more than to expose a problem paper.
15:11 September 17, 2010 by Audrian
I agree with you a large number of researchers can be honest. There are still a number that manipuate their data to show, for example, cigarette smoking was not dangerous or baby formula is better than breast milk (current time). There are articles that analyze the dishonesty of researchers, particularly those who receive research money from corporations.
12:45 October 3, 2010 by Mikaeeel
Swedes should also learn some skills from Indians :), in India it is quite common to copy and make fake results during graduate studies. 2 years ago, it was also reported that reserch article published by Swedish researchers from Linkoping, was copied by two Indian professors and later the journal took away their article.
20:48 October 19, 2010 by txbiolab2010
Dear Mikaeeeeel, It is obvious no one is perfect in understanding all sides of the issue but before commenting on a country, one should also study on comparative and relative statistics of such cases and false accusation rate in countries and for more information on above case u can visit website


the universal truth is media is often misused in today's cut throat competition by telling half truth.
Today's headlines
Revealed: Game of Thrones could be coming to Sweden
Game of Thrones cast members at the Emmy Awards in September. Photo: Jordan Strauss/AP

The producers of the hit show have asked for three rounds of location pictures of Swedish island Gotland.

Prime Minister to meet Swedish troops in Iraq
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and his Kurdish counterpart Nechervan Barzani. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Prime Minister Löfven is set to meet Swedish troops in Iraq on Tuesday.

Swedish politicians wage war on winter time
Soon it will look like this on your way home from work in Sweden. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Should Sweden stick with summer time all year round?

'Don't turn the Pope into a global teddy bear'
Sweden's Queen Silvia and Princess Leonore visiting Pope Francis in the Vatican last year. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

It's time to hold the Pope to account and make sure he turns his words about reform into action, argues a minister of the Swedish Church ahead of Pope Francis' visit to Sweden.

Löfven: 'Sweden will double its number of troops in Iraq'
Stefan Löfven and Haider al-Abadi during the visit on Monday. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has promised to double his country's number of troops in Iraq following a meeting with Iraqi counterpart Haider al-Abadi on Monday.

Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
Should Swedes think fairtrade with porn? Photo: Karin Malmhav/SvD/TT

A fairtrade attitude to pornography would be beneficial, Sweden's health minister told The Local.

Presented by Stockholm University
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se

Nordic fashion took centre stage in the Swedish capital last week as Stockholm University hosted the “first-ever” academic conference looking at luxury and sustainability in the fashion industry.

Referee, coach and parents in Swedish youth football fight
File photo of a referee holding a red card not related to the story. Photo: Stefan Jerrevång/TT

A football dad broke his leg in the brawl in front of 11-year-old kids after a Hammarby youth football game.

Illicit abattoir kept more than 100 bulls' penises
A couple of young bulls not related to the story. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Dried cattle genitalia, goats' heads and hundreds of litres of lard were just a few of the many strange finds discovered when police raided a property in Sweden.

This is officially Sweden's most beautiful beard
The most beautiful beard in Sweden. Photo: Memo Göcek

According to a jury of barbers and 'well known bearded profiles', that is.

Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
jobs available