Scientific Hall of Shame

Research fraud is as old as science itself. Over the years, suspicion of misconduct has swirled around some of science's leading lights.

2003 Steven Leadon

Tipped off by suspicious graphs in Leadon's published papers, colleagues accused this University of North Carolina geneticist of fabricating or falsifying findings in a major 1998 paper published in Science on the BRCA1 gene, thought to play a central role in breast cancer. The paper was retracted, and Leadon was forced to resign from his post.

2002 Jan Hendrik Schon

A committee found that this Bell Laboratories wunderkind fabricated or falsified data in at least 17 papers, many of them considered groundbreaking in molecular electronics. The "most outrageous fraud ever to tarnish the physical sciences," said Nature.

2002 Victor Ninov

A Bulgarian-born physicist formerly at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Ninov claimed to have created a missing member of the periodic table -- element 118. Later the feat was found to hinge on cooked data.

1983 John Darsee

A rising star at Harvard Medical School, Darsee fabricated data in more than 100 papers on genes and heart disease.

1687â€1713 Sir Isaac Newton

Eager to one-up archrival Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, Newton fudged some of his calculations on the velocity of sound and the precession of equinoxes, historians have discovered.