GRAND RAPIDS, Michigan (AP) – A Grand Rapids biomedical research center has agreed to pay $ 1.1 million to settle a federal investigation that began when authorities in 2020 discovered research samples in the luggage of a Chinese scientist arriving at the detroit airport.
The government accused the Van Andel Institute of failing to disclose a foreign component of federally sponsored research.
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“Full disclosure is essential, not only to validate scientific research, but also in the intense competition for scientific funding from the federal government,” US Attorney Andrew Birge said in a statement on Wednesday.
The National Institutes of Health, or NIH, said grant recipients must disclose and obtain approval if a significant portion of a government-funded project is carried out outside the United States, even if foreign researchers do not. receive no money from the NIH.
The scientist who was arrested at the airport was a former Van Andel Institute employee who worked at the Harbin Institute of Technology in China, the government said. He had nine blotters and a vial of liquid.
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The government alleged that the Van Andel Institute had also not done enough to investigate earlier samples from China.
The institute said staff members are required to follow federal compliance rules.
“We recognize the importance of transparency and the detailed reporting required of federal recipients of research funding,” said Jana Hall, Director of Operations. “We have significantly improved our compliance environment since 2019 and will continue to do so. “
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