A third-party reform panel set up by the government-backed Riken institute has called for severe penalties for stem cell researcher Haruko Obokata and her supervisors, and for the biology center where she works to be disbanded.

The proposal was submitted Thursday to Riken President Ryoji Noyori in light of the research misconduct uncovered in two high-profile research papers Obokata's team published in the British science journal Nature earlier this year.

"Considering the scale of the scandal, who is to blame and how to take responsibility is extremely important," Teruo Kishi, head of the outside panel, told reporters in Tokyo after submitting the report.