Con­tents of emails not made pub­lic


Austin American-Statesman - - THE SECOND FRONT - Con­tin­ued from A

the agency.

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

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