FOOTNOTES TO AN ARTICLE BY SERGE LANG

1. The Hearings, 101st Congress, Serial Number 101-64, are available from the Government Printing Office.

2. Dated December 30, 1986, reproduced in the Dingell Hearings of 9 May 1989, p. 312

3. "Baltimore's Travels", Issues in Science and Technology (a publication of the National Academy of Sciences), Summer 1989, p. 49

4. For example, in a memo addressed to Herman Eisen dated June 6, 1986, Margot O'Toole wrote factually: "The hybridomas of Table 2 were not checked for isotypes other than mu, according to Dr. T. Imanishi-Kari and Dr. M. Reis; the statement on page 250 that the majority of these hybridomas express gamma 2b is based on an analysis of a number of hybridomas from another fusion. These data will be reviewed below." The statement that "hybridomas . . were not checked . . . ." is not a statement giving rise to a problem of "interpretation", as Eisen asserts; it is an assertion -- true or false, but an assertion of fact. On the other hand, the Cell paper claimed that the hybridomas were indeed checked. [See also Eisen's testimony to the Dingell Committee quoted in Appendix 2.]

5. In his testimony to the Dingell Subcommittee (4 May 1991), Baltimore stated (p. 105): "The problem of her communication caused a serious misunderstanding when, in September, 1986, Dr. Herman Eisen in a chance conversation with Professor Imanishi-Kari, thought he heard her say that the Bet-1 antibody really did not work as described in the Cell paper. Dr. Eisen immediately called me with this news and I, unfortunately, instead of checking with Professor Imanishi-Kari, went home and began to stew about it. Without having thought through the significance of my proposals, I sent a letter to Dr. Eisen discussing a course of action . . . . As it turned out, within another day or so Dr. Eisen talked again to Professor Imanishi-Kari and realized that the previous discussion involved a total misunderstanding . . .".

6. Baltimore repeated the same version in his testimony to the Dingell Subcommittee, including the following statement (4 May 1989, p. 102):

Mr. Stewart is a man of significant analytic skills but poor judgement. This is shown well in the draft manuscript he produced analyzing the Cell paper. That manuscript is based on 17 pages of selected data from a study that ran perhaps 1000 pages. No one with any experience in science should think that such an analysis could get at the basic truth or falsity of the whole study. I believe that the rest of the Subcommittee staff as well as the Members who are on the Subcommittee, not being versed in the ways of science, have been misled into thinking that this method is appropriate for judging science.

Concerning Baltimore's statement that "no one with any experience in science should think that such an analysis could get at the basic truth or falsity of the whole study": no one had questioned "the whole study". Only parts of the study were questioned. [See also the reports of NIH reviewers quoted in Appendix 3.]

7. For instance, in a Memorandum dated October 17, 1986, the NIH Acting Deputy Director for Extramural Research and Training George Galasso wrote to Stewart-Feder that the "subject" was concerned with an "Evaluation of Alleged Misconduct in Science"; and he stated: "Because it appears that an inquiry -- and possibly an investigation -- is warranted, it is essential that such be carried out according to established NIH policy and practice."

8. I entirely agree with the first reviewer's recommendation: publish, with a disclaimer. I object to the positions expressed by the other three reviewers. See also the comment by Nature's editor quoted in Part V, §1 (a).

9. In this connection, I quote from a letter dated January 31, 1989, written to Baltimore by NIH Director James Wyngaarden, who communicated to Baltimore the conclusions of a panel appointed by NIH to look into the matter. The panel is known by the name of its Chairman, Joseph Davie, and included Hugh McDevitt and Ursula Storb in addition. (See Part III.) Wyngaarden wrote to Baltimore:

It appears that even though the allegations have been known to you and the other coauthors of the Cell paper since the Spring of 1986, the coauthors never met to consider seriously the allegations or to reexamine the data to determine whether there might be some basis for the allegations. Such an analysis on the part of the paper's coauthors, followed by appropriate action to correct such errors of oversights, may well have made a full investigation unnecessary.

10. Surely You're Joking Mr. Feynman, W. W. Norton (1985) p. 344. The quote is from a section adapted from the Caltech l974 Commencement Address. Feynman in his book also tells the story of what happened after Millikan's experiment determining the charge of the electron, showing how experts can fool themselves by trusting authority. As Feynman says (p. 342): "It's a thing that scientists are ashamed of -- this history . . . ". Indeed, it turned out that Millikan used a slightly wrong value for the viscosity of air. For years physicists found a higher charge, but they fooled themselves. Trusting Millikan, they looked for and found reasons to discard their answers if these were too high compared to Millikan's. If they found a value closer to Millikan's, they did not look so hard. As a result, the value of the charge increased as a function of time, until the value settled down to a number definitely higher than Millikan's. Feynman adds: "We've learned those tricks nowadays, and now we don't have that kind of a disease." In light of the Baltimore case, the extent to which the scientific community has "that kind of a disease" remains to be seen.

11. Memorandum from Mary L. Miers to Walter Stewart, 11 March 1988

12. For longer quotes and an analysis, see Part VI, and Appendix 16.

13. Both Margot O'Toole and Imanishi-Kari have complained (at different times, on different occasions) that they did not have access to information in some of the NIH investigations. [See Appendices 11 and 12.]

14. To an uninformed reader, this article may appear reasonable. Someone to whom I mailed both Baltimore's article and O'Toole's testimony to the Dingell Subcommittee reacted by stating that if he had not seen that testimony, he would not have realized the extent to which Baltimore was giving a tendentious presentation of the facts and issues, and he would not have realized what Margot O'Toole went through.

15. Be it noted that Barbara Culliton is now an editor of Nature. Caveat emptor.

16. 27 June 1991, p. 687. However, Nature changed the title from "Original data contradict published claims: Analysis of a recent paper" to another title: "Analysis of a whistle blowing", which affects the context of the paper. I regard this change as improper journalism. If the editors of Nature wanted to put in their own title, it was incumbent on them to inform readers explicitly of their editorial intervention.

17. For other instances, see §1a and §1b. Nature had plenty of opportunity to write up "the plain truth" long ago: when Stewart-Feder were submitting their paper for publication, but Nature refused it; when Baltimore was writing them: "If you do not wish to take the words of Drs. Eisen and Wortis, it merely shows how far removed you are from the ordinary behavior of scientists who look to each other for judgement and critical evaluation . . . ."; when Baltimore was promoting his position in Issues in Science and Technology and in letters to colleagues; when Baltimore testified to the Dingell Subommittee; etc. More recently, instead of writing "the plain truth", Nature wrote in its editorial "The end of the Baltimore Saga" (9 May 1991, p. 85): "Some among his colleagues may be tempted to use this public acknowledgement of error by their leader as an excuse for furthering their own narrow causes..Baltimore has said enough to restore his reputation as a fine scientist . . . He deserves a break." [See Appendix 9 for a longer quote from this editorial.]

18. See Appendix 15 for more quotes from Bernard Davis.

19. In connection with the alteration and fabrication of data, I shall quote in Appendix 17 from the NIH Draft Report, pp. 7 and 8, showing what Baltimore and his lawyers were aware of.

20. For instance, in the New York Times 10 October 1989 (p. 1): "Dispute on New President Shatters Tranquil Study at Rockefeller U." The New York Times reporter had a "conversation . . . with 15 of the university's 42 full professors . . . All said they opposed the Baltimore candidacy, for various reasons and in varying degrees, and they added that informal polls indicate that perhaps half the full professors oppose him too." See also the NYT editorial of 12 October 1989, ending with: "Universities are still trying to devise ways of dealing with disputed research, and Dr. Baltimore did not commit the crime of the century in mishandling the inquiry into this particular case. Whether or not this one incident casts doubt on his candidacy is a matter for Rockefeller University to decide. But the trustees took a risk in extending the invitation before the dust had settled. They should not be surprised that some faculty members wish to understand the case better."

21. For other articles reporting on the rebound, see for instance: Nature: "US drops Imanishi-Kari investigation; Baltimore withdraws Cell retraction" (16 July 1992); New York Times: "Researcher Accused Of Fraud in Her Data Will Not Be Indicted" (14 July 1992); Washington Post: "Prosecutors Halt Scientific Fraud Probe - Researcher Baltimore Claims Vindication, Plans to 'Unretract' Paper" (14 July 1992).

22. 101st Congress, 2d Session, House Report 101-688; Ninenteenth Report, Committee on Government Operations, Human Resources and Intergovernmental Relations Subcommittee, Ted Weiss (New York) Chairman, September 10, 1990. See also the "Point of View" by Weiss, "Too many scientists who 'blow the whistle' end up losing their jobs and careers", Chronicle of Higher Education 26 June 1991 p. A-36

23. See MIT's Technology Review: "When Scientists Judge Themselves -- The Misuse of Peer Review" (October 1991); and "John Dingell: Dark Knight of Science" (January 1992). These articles give evidence that the scientific community is beginning to understand better certain failures to police itself properly.