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John C. Byrd, M.D.

Distinguished University Professor of Medicine, Medicinal Chemistry and Veterinary Biosciences D. Warren Brown Chair in Leukemia Research Ohio State University

Dr. Byrd is an internationally known researcher and clinical specialist in leukemia and other hematologic malignancies at Ohio State University’s Comprehensive Cancer Center – James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James). He is a Distinguished University Professor of Medicine and Medicinal Chemistry and holds the D. Warren Brown Chair in Leukemia Research.

Dr. Byrd’s research accomplishments relate best to translational studies with several therapeutic agents active against chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). As a result of his work, therapeutic agents such as rituximab, alemtuzumab, idelalisib, ibrutinib, and acalabrutinib have been identified as effective agents against CLL. He has begun working on developing new therapeutics for older patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). He is a principal and chief medical officer on “Beat AML,” a large multicenter trial sponsored by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS) which focuses on incorporating personalized targeted therapy for elderly patients with AML. His primary goal of developing targeted agents is derived from his desire to offer patients non-toxic therapies with fewer side effects which ultimately impact their survival.

He has received numerous awards including the Return of the Child Award, being elected a Fellow in the American College of Physicians, the Joseph H. Burchenal Memorial Award, the William Dameshek Prize, the Moertel Award, the Odysey Research Medal Award, Hendrix College; the Distinguished Alumni Award University of Arkansas, Top 10 Clinical Research Achievements award Clinical Research Forum, the Emil J. Freireich Award, the R. Schilsky CALGB Lifetime Achievement Award, the OSU Distinguished University Scholar Award; Fellow, American Association for Advancement of Science; member, American Society of Clinical Investigation; and Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Stohlman Scholar.

He earned a bachelor’s degree with distinction in chemistry from Hendrix College and his medical degree from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. He completed a residency in internal medicine and a fellowship in hematology and oncology at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, and a postdoctoral translational laboratory fellowship at Johns Hopkins University. He joined the faculty of Ohio State’s College of Medicine and the OSUCCC – James in 2001 and became director of the Division of Hematology in 2008. He is program leader of the Leukemia Research Program within the OSUCCC—James.

In addition, Dr. Byrd has provided career support and mentorship to junior and midlevel faculty members with interest in clinical and laboratory research related to leukemia. He is passionate about promoting racial, ethnic, gender and economic diversity in the scientific and medical professional committee. He is a faculty member on several institutional T32 grants and is principal investigator on a K12 grant focused on faculty mentorship.

Dr. Byrd has been chair/co-Chair of the American Society of Clinical Oncology Grant Committee, the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology Leukemia Correlative Sciences Committee, and the American Society of Hematology (ASH) Clinical Research Training Institute and Leukemia Committee. He has been a member of the FDA Minimal Residual Disease Panel; NCI Study Section Committees G, H, and J; NCI Leukemia Steering Committee, National Cancer Center Network Lymphoma Guidelines Committee, National Heart and Lung Institute data safety and monitoring board, and the ASH Task Force on Personalized Medicine. He is a councilor for the American Society of Hematology. He has been or is on the editorial board of several leading medical journals and is an associate editor for Blood. He has authored or co-authored more than 500 peer-reviewed, cancer-related articles in prestigious medical journals related to work in leukemia and drug development.