January 17, 2002

FORT WORTH, Texasâ??Today, Gov. Rick Perry appointed Robert Gracy, PhD, of the University of North Texas Health Science Center, to his new Council on Science and Biotechnology Development.

The Governor announced the formation of the council and introduced its members in Austin this morning.

Among its efforts, the Council on Science and Biotechnology Development will promote collaboration among higher education institutions to increase federal research funding in Texas and to increase the economic development from scientific and biotechnology industries.

â?? I want the work of the Science and Biotechnology Development Council to lead to a more vibrant Texas economy that brings great opportunity to more of our citizens,â? said Gov. Perry. â??Biotechnology is the wave of the future when it comes to health care, and it means limitless opportunity for Texas.â?

Creation of the council results from the growing recognition of the role biotechnology advances will have on future economic development in Fort Worth and the rest of the state. In Fort Worth, the health science center will break ground later this year on its new Biotechnology Center, which will allow its scientists to expand their research into select health issues, including aging, cancer, and cardiovascular disease.

At the UNT Health Science Center, Dr. Gracy serves as the associate vice president of research and biotechnology. He also continues his research on components of aging, such as Alzheimerâ??s disease.

â??This is the biotech century,â? said Dr. Gracy. â??The most exciting scientific advances this century will come from biotechnology related discoveries.â?

Dr. Gracy is on the board of the Texas Healthcare & Bioscience Institute and the Texas Health Care Information Council. He also chairs the biotechnology subcommittee of the Technology Council of the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce.Dr. Gracy has previously received the Research Career Development and MERIT awards from the National Institutes of Health. In 2001, he received the International Achievement Award for Science and Medicine from the Worlds Affairs Council of Greater Fort Worth. He has published over 200 research papers and book chapters and holds several patents in biotechnology.

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