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Judy Mikovits has been arrested

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS News' started by santi, Nov 19, 2011.

  1. Kina

    Kina Moderation Team Lead

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    I followed up on this comment. Indeed, her lawyer did say that:
    I also looked up comments made by Judy Mikovits about why she was fired:


    This only further confuses me.
     
  2. liquid sky

    liquid sky Senior Member

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    Well, Annette kinda let the cat out of the bag on that one because she stated that she fired Judy for refusing the cells for research to Dr. Lombardi. No mystery about that.
     
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  3. leela

    leela Slow But Hopeful

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    Yes, and interesting as well that in the first Pfost affadavit the cell line issue is mentioned, yet in the second affadavit it is not mentioned.
    So, first it was about the cell lines, about which JM would not cede, so she was fired. Thus, the civil suit was about intellectual property, since it seems that the cell line issue is not legally withing WPIs purview.
     
  4. Andrew

    Andrew Senior Member

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    Here's what I remember

    Judy said she refused to turn over the cells because they are part of the grant.
    Annette said Judy misrepresented the situation.
    Pfost said they cells were mailed to Lombardi
    Judy's lawyer was not there, so I assume his comment is based on what Judy told him.

    Out of all that, I can make guesses, but nothing is definitive. For example, I can guess they were supposed to go to Lombardi (because they were mailed to him), but maybe they were addressed to him by mistake because he is associated with the first study. So who knows.
     
  5. JT1024

    JT1024 Senior Member

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    Joshua..

    I may be wrong...I'll have to investigate further.. but if I'm not mistaken, the LAST author mentioned in a publication is the principal investigator/author not the first.

    If you check into pubs by Coffin, Miller, or anyone else, they are usually the last name, not the first.

    I believe the person listed at the beginning has the least contribution, NOT the most.
     
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  6. urbantravels

    urbantravels disjecta membra

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    No, that's not how it works. There are conventions, but they are not always rigidly adhered to, about who gets listed as an author and in what order.

    http://sciencecareers.sciencemag.or...s_issues/articles/2010_04_16/caredit.a1000039

     
  7. liquid sky

    liquid sky Senior Member

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    Judy was in charge of the study. She is the principal investigator and the one in charge of the grant.
     
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  8. TessDeco

    TessDeco

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    Yes! If the cell lines from Japan were addressed to Lombardi then they should have been delivered to Lombardi. I don't understand Judy's claim that it would be unethical for Lombardi to use them. Lombardi's name is listed on the Science paper (Lombardi et al) along with Judy's and that research was funded by the NIH grant. Are they not a research team? Judy may have been the PI but the grant money belongs to WPI. Judy's behavior just seems really odd to me. I certainly hope all parties can negotiate some kind of workable agreement so some kind of CFS/ME research came move forward.
     
  9. Andrew

    Andrew Senior Member

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    Well, a couple things. All we have is Pfost's word that it was addressed that way. Also, Lambardi being part of the first study doesn't mean he is part of the current one. OTOH, the grant was given to WPI, not Judy. So in a way, they call the shots.

    Let's assume for a moment that Judy did what Pfost claims. We all know how passionate Judy is, and in her actions she was probably doing what she thought was best for the research. She felt a great obligation to patients, and assumed she was the best person to complete it. Assuming she took them, that is. This is just speculation. OTOH, WPI has a responsibility for all that research. And if notebooks suddenly go missing, Annette would be a lousy manager if she didn't take action. And taking legal action in what looks like a theft makes sense.

    I hope that WPI gets their stuff back. I hope whatever charges are against Judy can go away. I don't think this is entirely in Annette's hands now, because the police are involved. But I hope this can all happen with the least amount of damage to everyone.

    For all the pain this has caused for them and patients, I think the ME/CFS cause is better off because of the two of them. They put ME/CFS onto the world stage, and the setbacks with XMRV have not removed it. There are more scientists involved now than before. It's just so unfortunate that the WPI thing has turned into such a mess.
     
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  10. TessDeco

    TessDeco

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    A statement made today on the Whittemore Peterson Institute Facebook wall states:
    "We are thankful that most of our property has been returned."

    So it looks like Judy's arrest did result in locating at least most of the items gone missing from WPI. You are right about this unfortunate mess bringing a lot of attention to CFS/ME. I don't think this going to turn out well for Judy's career and her ability to further her research. But ..hopefully it can be a catalyst to something good for CFS/ME in the future!
     
  11. Ecoclimber

    Ecoclimber Senior Member

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    Dang, people think I got soft or something. Just remember something here, that I picked up. I just remember something from my law enforcement days that stuck me as odd about those affidavits and also all this negotiation. Something seemed very strange.

    This is a criminal investigation. WPI reported they called the police in so it became a police investigation, a criminal matter not a civil matter now.

    So Max Pfost affidavit was singed by a private notary public employed by the institution which employees him as well....hmmm. Who read him his Miranda Rights and the right to speak to an attorney? This is a criminal case now! I know they didn't have to but could his affidavits be considered fruits from a poison tree? That the affidavit would be thrown out in a criminal trial for violating his Fifth Amendment Rights? Maybe they figured this all in? There was no signed confession by a police agency acting as a third disinterested party who is conducting the investigation witnessed by a detective. By the way,The university of Nevada police dept. is investigating the case. When the police feel that they have sufficient evidence they will present it to the DA's where he will assess the charges or present it before secret grand jury. Perhaps everything is sealed right now.

    But it is strange that the WPI and Mikovits are in negotiation. You don't do that with the private party you just robbed in a criminal case, but you negotiate with the DA's Office not the WPI...very strange. This has gone from a civil case to a criminal case and is now taken out of the hands of the WPI.

    These crimes become acts against the citizens of Nevada and whoever else is involved. You could have number of entities, Mikovits, WPI, Police, The DA, Feds and other perps involved in this. There are still some very serious charges that they are looking into.

    If the events as stated were true you have conspiracy to commit a crime, stolen property, crossing state lines with the intent to commit a crime, crossing state lines in the commission of felony, stolen goods possession, research espionage, interfering in the operations of a business, stealing Federal property, using emails in the commission of a crime which could invoke RICO, destruction of stolen property, fraud...to name just a few. I believe the Feds will sooner or later get involve. On the other hand if Judy's version plays out, you will have false reporting of everything, filing false police reports, false imprisonment, perjury, libel, slander, defamation of character etc.

    All of this is a bit odd though.

    Eco
     
  12. Enid

    Enid Senior Member

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    I hope the current WPI/JM negotiations will make all that ghastly scenario void.
     
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  13. santi

    santi

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  14. jenbooks

    jenbooks Guest

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    It's a power struggle, I think, over whether a research director of a lab is running the lab and deciding what is being studied, and who is doing what...or whether someone in Annettte's capacity can override the research director's decisions and tell researchers they can work on something else, etc.

    I believe the cell line was ordered from Japan because Judy was holding the first cell line and not wanting Lombardi to work on it.

    I agree with Judy here. She was hired as research director, and until she's fired or demoted, she's research director, and she decides what's being done in the lab. A non scientist can't make those decisions, especially in a lab that has national attention for possible contamination, possibly falsfiying data, etc. The research director is really under a huge responsibility in such case. Demote her, promote someone else, or fire her, then you can do that. It seems like a power struggle, in that Lombardi wanted to work on that cell line, and Annette apparently agreed, but Judy did not. So she held the cell line, from my understanding, and then Lombardi just ordered it from Japan instead.

    Why she didn't want him working on that cell line at that time, who knows. It could be priorities of her own as to what's important in a lab struggling financially, or it could be more power struggle, not wanting to share etc. But if she was still research director, and still responsible for everything happening in the lab therefore, I can see her point. If her employer did not like it, then fire her, and then let Lombardi order the cell lines. IMHO.


     
  15. santi

    santi

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    I am not sure if the research director is the one who decides what is going to be researched, because is an employee.
     
  16. liquid sky

    liquid sky Senior Member

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    If the cell line from Japan was payed for by money from the NIH grant, but was going to be used on another project, that is fraud. We do not know the particulars, but private affadavits from the company seem rather twisted.

    It all has the appearance of being inappropriate, as if some decided they do not have to play by the rules.
     
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  17. jenbooks

    jenbooks Guest

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    Santi, that seems a foolish statement to me. Science is not publishing, but as an analogy, I can't imagine the actual owner of a magazine saying to the editor in chief, You may want to do this particular story yourself, but I'm going to let junior editor susie woozie do it. The editor in chief says, No, I'm keeping my sources to myself, I want to do this story later, it's not right to do it now for various reasons. Then the owner says to susie woozie, go ahead, go find the sources yourself and do the story.

    Why do you have an editor in chief?
    Why do you have a research director?
    You either do, or you don't.
    Sounds like poor management skills at best....

    Which doesn't at all address 1) fraud? 2) contamination 3) retraction 4) stealing notebooks 5) lying about it (true to the letter not the spirit, she herself did not steal the notebooks per se, she asked Max to according to his affadvit, but in every other sense apparently she did and 6) influencing a young researcher (Pfost) in a direction that probably tanked his career for good.

    Sounds like emotion driven and really poor judgment...and maybe worse, who knows. I guess we'll find out over time.


     
  18. TessDeco

    TessDeco

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    Yes! Its sad that the work at WPI that started out as a research team effort (Lombardi et al) seems to have become so divided. There are probably many factors that led the WPI working relationships to deteriorate to where they are fighting over cell lines. In fighting seems to have replaced staying focused on the goal. Bad decisions were made by many! Its a shame for all of us!


    It has kept CFS/ME in the news so hopefully something good will eventually come of this!
     
  19. gregf

    gregf Senior Member

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    Missing notebooks returned to Reno chronic disease lab.

    http://t.co/fp1Sjaab.

     
  20. ixchelkali

    ixchelkali Senior Member

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