TAMPA (WFLA) – Moffitt Cancer Center CEO Dr. Alan List is stepping down, accused of violating the cancer center’s rules for conflicts of interest through their work with researchers in China, 8 On Your Side has learned.

According to the National Institutes of Health, an investigation of the hospital’s leadership undercovered evidence that several members of Moffit’s leadership team “failed to disclose substantial contributions of resources from other organizations, foreign affiliations, and financial conflicts of interest.”

In a statement to News Channel 8 the NIH stated:

NIH continues to work with the Moffitt Cancer Center compliance office to determine the extent of the violations and remediation actions, which may include replacement of principal investigators on affected NIH grants and recovery of NIH funding, among other actions. NIH commends the Moffitt Cancer Center compliance office and Board of Directors for taking swift action upon learning of these violations and working with NIH to remediate the problems.

When NIH identifies potential threats, we notify our grantee institutions and ask them to investigate to ensure they are complying with the terms and conditions of NIH grant award. These incidents uncovered by the Moffitt Cancer Center are not unique to their institution and we remind NIH-funded institutions to look closely at their organizations to mitigate unscrupulous practices by foreign entities that aim to capitalize on the collaborative nature of the U.S. biomedical enterprise.

There is no indication Moffitt’s research was compromised or patient care affected.

Moffitt provided this statement to News Channel 8 following List’s and Sellers resignations

“At Moffitt, we pride ourselves not only on our life-saving research and world-class patient care, but also on transparency and integrity among all our employees. This was an unfortunate but necessary decision,” said Adams. Going forward, this will not damage the future of our research or the care of our patients. We will continue to be careful stewards of the public money entrusted to us for cancer research. Moffitt is proud to have 7,000 of the finest medical professionals in the world fighting every day to treat and cure cancer.  That is what mattered yesterday, and that is what will matter tomorrow.”

Timothy J. Adams, institute board chairman, will assume overall operational responsibilities while a national CEO search is underway.