New funding for researcher who sued to stop retractions (and now has 8)

Mario Saad
Mario Saad

A diabetes researcher with eight retractions — despite his attempts to block some in court — has received a new batch of research funding.

According to a release from public funding agency Fundacao de Amparo a Pesquisa do Estado de Sao Paulo (FAPESP), Mario Saad is among 33 researchers who will receive funding from partnerships between federal and state agencies, including FAPESP.

It’s unclear how much Saad’s project will individually receive, but the total for all projects exceeds 640 million Brazilian Real, equivalent to $185 million USD.

Saad’s name should be familiar to our readers.

Last year, the researcher sued the American Diabetes Association after it issued expressions of concern (EoCs) for four of his Diabetes papers, arguing defamation. A judge eventually dismissed the suit, and the EoCs turned into retractions.

Since then, retractions have accumulated for Saad, who recently earned his 8th.

We contacted FAPESP to find out the total amount of funding that will be allocated to Saad, based at the University of Campinas (UNICAMP).

The agency has funded some of Saad’s research that was eventually retracted, such as a 2011 PLOS Biology paper, and one of the retracted Diabetes papers. Both retractions cited problems with image duplication.

Update 11/17/16 10:00 a.m. eastern: According to Direto da Ciencia, Saad’s award totals $5 million Real over the next five years, equivalent to nearly $1.5 million USD.

Update 11/18/16 1:35 p.m. eastern: The Direto da Ciencia article also reports that UNICAMP is conducting a new investigation into Saad’s work, and the funding is contingent upon its outcome.

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4 thoughts on “New funding for researcher who sued to stop retractions (and now has 8)”

  1. Purely as a general principle, it doesn’t seem a good use of money to fund research that other scientists will disbelieve.

  2. As a Brazilian, I feel insulted by this.

    No wonder our universities are mostly crap.

    (But then, you can’t even punish a plagiarizing/cheating student without being called names)

  3. This is an absolute shame. The guy has 11 retractions by now ! Who does he think he’s fooling ? (well, apparently a lot of people at Fapesp and CNPq). Politics and personal relations trumps science, once again. If Unicamp cares for its reputation, it should deny the funding.

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