Contents of emails not made public
The emails involved a grant given to Peloton Therapeutics two years ago. The grant was awarded without the required reviews by scientific and business experts.
Peloton was a startup with only a business plan when CPRIT’s oversight committee approved its $11 million grant. More than $3 million has been disbursed to the Dallasbased company.
The emails included exchanges between Alfred Gilman, the agency’s chief science officer, and Jerry Cobbs, the agency’s commercialization officer, as well as Robert Ulrich, who led the agency’s commercialization review panel in 2010.
Gilman and Cobbs resigned in the wake of the discovery that Cobbs put the Peloton grant on the agenda of the agency’s 11-member oversight committee, which includes appointees of Gov. Rick Perry, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and House Speaker Joe Straus.
Peloton was to commercialize research at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, where Gilman worked before retiring and taking a $700,000-a-year job as CPRIT’s chief science officer.
Austin businessman Jimmy Mansour, chairman of the cancer agency’s oversight committee, didn’t release the emails to the public Friday.
“I don’t want to comment too much because the investigation is ongoing,” said Mansour after confirming that several emails were recovered.
The agency’s newly hired compliance officer, Patricia Vojack, discovered the problem with the Peloton grant in September after Gimson asked her to review the agency’s grants to companies seeking to commercialize cancer research.
Gimson didn’t notify the agency’s oversight committee about the problem for several weeks.
Instead he had the company resubmit its application to the agency. But news of the problems with the grant leaked before it was brought