CUNY halts Alzheimer’s researcher’s research | ET REALITY


The City University of New York is pausing its investigation into a faculty member, an Alzheimer’s researcher accused of misconduct, the university said. said in a statement on Friday.

Neuroscientist Hoau-Yan Wang’s studies support an Alzheimer’s drug in advanced clinical trials. The medication, simufilam, is made by Cassava science, a Texas-based pharmaceutical company. Dr. Wang frequently collaborated with Lindsay H. Burns, the company’s chief scientist.

“Because questions have been raised about the confidentiality and integrity of this investigation, CUNY will suspend the underlying investigation into the allegations related to Dr. Wang’s research until the University completes a thorough investigation of the process,” the university said.

Dr. Wang did not respond to a request for comment.

“Since September 2021, Cassava Sciences has been waiting for reliable and credible research from CUNY,” Remi Barbier, founder and CEO of Cassava, said in an email. “We are still waiting.”

From the beginning, some scientists were skeptical about simufilam’s purported mode of action and, later, about Cassava’s reports of improvements among participants in its clinical trials. Following allegations in 2021 that Dr. Wang and Cassava may have manipulated data, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the National Institutes of Health began investigating the research.

A committee convened by CUNY also launched an investigation into Dr. Wang’s work and his lab’s finances over two decades.

On October 12, Science magazine made public a draft of the committee’s report, which concluded that Dr. Wang was “reckless” in failing to preserve or provide original data, an offense that “amounts to significant research misconduct.” (The researchers also concluded that Dr. Burns was responsible for errors in some of the articles.)

CUNY declined to comment on the paper at the time, but said it would formally release the report this month. Critics have since questioned the researchers’ objectivity and the veracity of their descriptions of Dr. Wang’s responses to the research.

On Friday, the university declined to comment on these allegations beyond its official statement.

“In accordance with its policy, CUNY will not comment on the accuracy of the research referenced in the articles because no final action has been taken regarding this research,” the statement said.

“CUNY is committed to ensuring that its investigative processes conform to the highest ethical and procedural standards and that the fairness of the procedures is preserved for all parties,” the university added. “To that end, any findings regarding allegations of research misconduct must be reliable and credible.”

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