Geneticist Haruko Obokata, who drew global attention with an apparently revolutionary paper on STAP cells, will retract the report, the government-backed Riken institute announced on Wednesday.

The retraction would be a significant move, as both the paper and an auxiliary study were carried by one of the world's most influential and prestigious journals, Nature, which itself would bear scrutiny for having published them.

An inquiry conducted by Riken earlier identified two problems with images used in the main paper and recommended that Obokata retract it.