[Investigation Reports] The Paolo Macchiarini scientific fraud case

The Italian thoracic surgeon Paolo Macchiarini had performed the world’s first synthetic organ transplant. He was considered a pioneer in the field of regenerative medicine.

Macchiarini arrived at Sweden in 2010 and worked as professor of regenerative medicine at Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm.

Seven of the nine patients who received one of his synthetic trachea transplants have died.

Recently, an independant investigation commission, led by Kjell Asplund, Chairman of the Swedish Council on Medical Ethics, criticised the synthetic trachea operations that were performed at Karolinska University Hospital.

Another separate investigation at Karolinska Institute has shown mistakes made during Macchiarini’s recruitment process and handling of scientific misconduct allegations that were made against him.

Our conclusion is that the recruitment of Macchiarini as a visiting professor at KI in 2010 was pushed through in an inappropriate manner and in a way that failed to meet the requirements for documenting and handling such matters.”

The report added:

“We also consider the vice-chancellor’s decision on the case of scientific misconduct of August 2015 to be poorly justified, particularly as regards the most substantial allegation concerning six articles”

Investigation reports

  • The Macchiarini Case Investigation of the synthetic trachea transplantations at Karolinska University Hospital – 31 August 2016. Link
  • Karolinska Institutet and the Macchiarini case. Summary in English and Swedish. September 2016. Link


  1. [Science – 9 Sept. 2016]  Panel finds misconduct in rat paper by star surgeon Paolo Macchiarini By Gretchen Vogel
  2. [Nature 6 Sept. 2016 ] Macchiarini scandal is a valuable lesson for the Karolinska Institute
  3. [Nature 2 Sept. 2016 ] Culture of silence and nonchalance protected disgraced trachea surgeon.

Related Newspaper /Scientific Blogs articles in English

Related Newspaper/Scientific Blogs articles in French


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