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Researcher, Two Universities Sued Over Validity of Prostate Cancer Test

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Science  18 Sep 2009:
Vol. 325, Issue 5947, pp. 1484
DOI: 10.1126/science.325_1484

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A Johns Hopkins University (JHU) researcher whose reports of a potential new blood test for diagnosing prostate cancer generated excitement—but also skepticism—is now being sued by his industry sponsor for scientific fraud. The company, Onconome Inc., says it poured millions of dollars over 5 years into the laboratory of Robert Getzenberg and alleges that he presented the company with misleading data. The lawsuits say that the biomarker test, which Getzenberg claimed could distinguish between cancerous and normal tissue, was "essentially as reliable as flipping a coin." Onconome is suing Getzenberg, JHU, and the University of Pittsburgh, his previous institution, for unspecified damages.