Dr. Dong-Pyou Han, a former assistant professor of biomedical studies, claimed that rabbit blood could be treated to create a vaccine to HIV. According to the New York Post, Dr. Dong-Pyou Han spiked a clinical test sample with healthy human blood to make it appear that the rabbit serum produced disease-fighting antibodies, officials said. The bogus claim helped Dr Han and his team at Iowa State University obtain $19 million (€13.8 million) in research grants from the American National Institute of Health, or NIH.
While the claim raised hopes for many working in the health and HIV/AIDS sectors, suspicions were raised in the medical and academic circles when Dr. Han’s results could not be replicated. The claims were disproven, however, when the NIH tested the rabbit serum, only to find human antibodies.
As a result, Dr. Han has since resigned from his position at the University, and also agreed not to apply for U.S. government contracts for three years.