A cancer researcher who resigned from Duke University in North Carolina two years ago and left a South Carolina clinic earlier this year following a CBS “60 Minutes” report about his research is now working in North Dakota.
Anil Potti is a medical oncologist at the Cancer Center of North Dakota in Grand Forks, the Grand Forks Herald reported (http://bit.ly/SclPZf ). William Noyes, who founded the center, said Potti has worked with him since May.
Potti came under scrutiny in 2010 after questions arose about his claim to be a Rhodes Scholar and about the integrity of his research. He resigned late that year. The North Carolina Medical Board concluded that Potti acted unprofessionally — a finding he did not challenge.
Noyes said Potti was unfairly accused, and that his work at Duke that was questioned involved research and not patient care. The Grand Forks center works with patients and does not conduct clinical trials.
“There’s never been an issue of patient care,” Noyes said. “Most, if not all, his patients have loved him.”
A telephone listing in Grand Forks for Potti could not be found. Noyes told the Herald that Potti is away from the clinic until Aug. 28.
Potti, 40, a native of India, has ties to the Grand Forks region. He did his residency in a University of North Dakota program from 1996 to 2000, and taught at the UND medical school from 2000 to 2003.
“If a guy can’t get a second chance here in North Dakota, where he trained, man, you can’t get a second chance anywhere,” Noyes said.
There is no mention of Potti on the Cancer Center’s website but that is due to design problems, Noyes said.
North Dakota’s State Board of Medical Examiners on July 27 voted unanimously to grant Potti a license to practice medicine, said Duane Houdek, the board’s executive director. Potti had been working under a provisional license since May.
The board looked at Potti’s public reprimand in North Carolina as well as the Duke scandal. The public reprimand issued by the North Carolina board is a light discipline that didn’t restrict Potti’s practice of medicine, Houdek said.
Houdek said the issue with the Duke clinical trials “is disturbing,” but that “we did not see anything in his history that had to do with competency of direct patient care or anything like that. That was the basis for our issuing him a license.”
Houdek said Potti has settled about a dozen malpractice lawsuits filed by patients but that they all appear to be related to the clinical trials at Duke.
Information from: Grand Forks Herald, http://www.grandforksherald.com