Benjamin Izar, MD, PhD
Photo: Benjamin Izar, MD, PhD



Elected 2023
Benjamin Izar, MD,PhD, is a medical oncologist and the Vivian and Seymour Milstein Family Assistant Professor of Medicine at Columbia University. He received an MD/PhD at the Justus Liebig University in Giessen Germany. He completed his internal medicine residency at Massachusetts General Hospital, oncology fellowship at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and a post-doctoral fellowship at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School with Dr. Levi Garraway, and subsequently with Dr. Aviv Regev at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, along with co-mentorship by Dr. Kai Wucherpfennig, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. During his post-doctoral training, he published first- and senior-author papers in Science and Cell, among others, and received several honors, including the NCI K08 mentored research award, the Burroughs Wellcome Fund Career Award for Medical Scientists, the AACR NextGen Star award, among others. He delivered several oral presentations at ASCO, AACR and the Society for Melanoma Research (SMR) annual meetings. In November 2019, Dr. Izar started a tenure-track assistant professor laboratory program at Columbia University. His lab studies the intersection of cancer immunology, tumor genomics, and metastatic organotropism. These factors dictate clinical drug responses/resistance to existing and investigational targeted and immune-based therapies. Dr. Izar’s laboratory has published several landmark studies in this field. Dr. Izar’s research program is supported by several federal grants, including an NCI R37 MERIT award, and prestigious foundations, including the Gerstner Philanthropes, Melanoma Research Alliance, and the Pershing Square Sohn Foundation. In addition to the research activities, Dr. Izar has an active clinical practice focusing on treating patients with melanoma, and, as member of the early drug development program, other solid tumors. He is the PI on immunotherapy trials in this space and holds several patents pertaining to the development of novel cancer therapies.