AUSTIN (AP) — The state’s beleaguered $3 billion cancer-fighting effort is facing another round of scrutiny from lawmakers.

State budget-writers on Thursday are next to get their shot at the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas. The embattled agency has plunged into turmoil since revealing last month that an $11 million grant to a private company bypassed review.

Prosecutors have launched a criminal investigation and Executive Director Bill Gimson has asked to resign. Governor Rick Perry on Wednesday called for a moratorium on new grants until confidence in the agency is restored.

Despite the tough talk, lawmakers so far haven’t hinted at slashing the agency’s budget. CPRIT is asked for the maximum $600 million over the next biennium to fund more research and private startups.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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