Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Judge Dismisses Cha Libel Suit Against Flamm

The California physician who criticized Korean stem cell scientist Kwang Yul Cha has won a round in Cha's libel suit suit against him.

Earlier this month, a Los Angeles judge threw out the suit against Bruce Flamm of Riverside, Ca., but Cha has about 60 days to file an appeal, which a spokesman says he is considering.

Cha surfaced in connection with the California stem cell agency when a nonprofit subsidiary of his organization won a research grant from CIRM. After the grant was approved, the media reported its links to Cha along with news about the controversy surrounding some of Cha's research. In October, Cha's group withdrew its application for the CIRM grant.

In the case of Flamm, he published a critical opinion piece concerning Cha's 2001 study that linked prayer to in vitro fertilization success. Cha says Flamm is engaged in a personal vendetta.

Regarding the judge's action, Flamm told The Scientist on Nov. 20:
"This is a great victory for science, peer review and academic freedom."

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