Fraudulent Harvard Researcher Loses Medical Practice License
Former Harvard Medical School research fellow Dr. John R. Darsee, who admitted in 1981 that he had falsified research data for a published article, last Friday lost his license to practice medicine in New York.
The New York State Board of Regents, which oversees the practices of many licensed professionals, voted to revoke Darsee's right to practice in lue of "his extensive falsification of data in 1981 while completely aware of the situation," board spokesman William C. Carpenter said yesterday.
Darsee attended the Regents' hearing in Albany but he was not accompanied by an attorney and did not say if he would appeal the ruling, Carpenter said. Darsee could not be reached for comment yesterday.
Heart Disease Article
Dr. Eugene Braunwald, chairman of the department of medicine at Harvard- affiliated Brigham and Woman's Hospital (BWH), ended Darsee's research fellowship at the BWH in May, 1981 after Darsee admitted that he had fabricated data for an article on heart disease published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Darcee's fraud in 1981 prompted the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to demand that the hospital return some $122,000 in government research grants. NIH also prohibited Darsee from using any Health and Human Services funding until 1991, the most stringent punishment ever imposed by the institute.
In response to the growing demand for review of faculty conduct after the Darsee case, Medical School Dean Daniel C. Tosteson '44 established a committee to deal with any future allegations of research fraud.
Since the Darsee case one other one of data falsification has been investigated at the B.W.H. Unpurified charges were brought against an unidentified member of the laboratory of Dr. K. Austen Frank, Bayles Professor of Medicine, in the spring of 1983, but the disposition of that ease could not be determined.
After Darsee left Harvard, he served until June 1983 as a research fellow in the intensive care department of the Ellis Hospital in Schenectady, N.Y.
Andrew Foster, director of public relations for Ellis Hospital, described Darsee as "a delightful man with a knack for cardiology," but he added that Darsee remained "under supervision" throughout his stint at Ellis.
Because the board's decision applies only to New York, Darsee is free to practice in any state in which he holds a license, said Carpenter. Since 1983, Darsee has not held a medical position, but Foster said he believes Darsee applied for a license in Indiana after leaving Ellis