September 24, 2020

The Niche

Knoepfler lab stem cell blog


4 min read

A small group of the STAP authors via RIKEN have now released a detailed protocol also available at Nature Protocol Exchange for making STAP stem cells entitled “Essential technical tips for STAP cell conversion culture from somatic cells”. This comes about 5 weeks after publication of their Nature STAP stem cell papers. 2020 update: With the 4th and perhaps final Obokata paper retraction this year, is the STAP saga finally over? Drs. Obokata, Sasai, and Niwa have added more detail to this protocol compared to the methods …Read More

1 min read

What will the future bring for STAP stem cells? Let’s look into a stem cell crystal ball. We are now one month out from the original publication of the papers. When we are three or six or twelve months out from their publication will independent labs have succeeded in replicating the method? It’s possible, but it is also perhaps equally likely that that won’t have happened. What about the papers–will they be corrected and that’s it? Or could they face something as severe as retraction …Read More

2 min read

I don’t know about you, but this whole STAP stem cell thing has got me kind of bummed out. Last night I was thinking to perhaps stop blogging about it as the situation turns darker, but it seems like it wouldn’t do any good to ignore it. The ostrich with head in the sand approach won’t work here (image from Wikipedia). Heads up, eyes and minds open, and push for dialogue. I’m continuing to reach out to the scientists involved to talk and keep …Read More

3 min read

Are the Nature STAP stem cell papers compromised? Could Nature‘s investigation conclude with something as serious as retraction or rather a mild slap on the wrist? Somewhere in between? (note you may find this update post from 2020 to be of interest: Whatever happened to the STAP cell scientists including Haruko Obokata?) Why is this question even being raised? A large number of potentially serious issues with these papers have been identified and discussed on PubPeer here and here, as well as elsewhere. These have …Read More