Mar 2, 2016
Death of Prof. Holbrook Kohrt, SAB member

We were deeply saddened to learn of the death of Holbrook Kohrt M.D., PhD on February 24th last. Holbrook was a highly valued member of the Scientific Advisory Board at Lytix Biopharma. Holbrook made a significant contribution to the field of tumour immunology. It was our privilege to work with Holbrook and his passing is a great loss to the scientific and clinical community.

Holbrook Kohrt

M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Medicine (Oncology); Stanford Cancer Institute. Dr. Kohrt investigated novel therapeutic strategies to enhance anti-tumor immunity, including the discovery of checkpoint inhibitors and cancer vaccine strategies. Dr. Kohrt was the co-director of the Cancer Immunotherapy Trials Network.

As a faculty member at Stanford, Dr. Kohrt was developing novel vaccine strategies which induce tumor antigen-specific immunity and improve graft-versus-tumor reactions without exacerbation of graft-versus-host disease. His studies also included efforts to identify and develop immunomodulatory antibodies targeting immune effector cells subsets, such as natural killer cells, which enhance the anti-tumor activity of tumor-targeting antibodies. Dr. Kohrt was a leader in the clinical development of agents including IL-15, IL-7, anti-CTLA-4, anti-CD137, anti-PD-1, anti-PD-L1, BTK inhibitors, and HPV-targeted and WT1-targeted vaccines.

Dr. Kohrt attended Stanford University Medical School, where he trained in Internal Medicine through the Clinical Investigator Pathway and completed a fellowship in Hematology and Oncology at Stanford with a research focus on preclinical models for novel immunomodulatory antibodies. During this time, he developed, validated, and nationally implemented a nomogram for risk prediction in early stage breast cancer. Dr. Kohrt received his Ph.D. in clinical trial design, biostatistics, and tumor immunology from Stanford under mentor Ron Levy with a thesis including the first report of an agonistic monoclonal antibody capable of enhancing the efficacy of tumor-targeting therapeutics. This antibody is now in five Phase 1/2 clinical trials.