NEW FINDINGS: Two Emory researchers failed to disclose Chinese funding and ties – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
What happened: Emory University has cut ties with two Chinese-American biomedical researchers because they “had failed to fully disclose foreign sources of research funding and the extent of their work for research institutions and universities in China,” according to a statement by the school. A story on uschinapress.com identifies the researchers as Li Xiao-Jiang and Li Shihua, geneticists who have been involved in work using CRISPR, the cutting-edge gene editing technology. They were working in a department using grant money from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Why it’s important: As the trade war rages, it hardly seems coincidental that the NIH—a government agency—has taken a tough stance on China in academia. This is the second publicly known case of an institution firing NIH-funded researchers over concerns about foreign involvement. Last month, the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, ousted five “Asian” faculty who were also accused of failing to report foreign funding and business ties, sparking concerns of racial profiling. Both investigations that led to these firings were started in response to the NIH’s concerns about its grants becoming subject to foreign influence.