A portrait photo

Ethan Dmitrovsky, M.D.

Director, Frederick National Laboratory and President, Leidos Biomedical Research, Inc.

Biography

Dr. Ethan Dmitrovsky is director of the Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research and president of Leidos Biomedical Research. This National Laboratory combats cancer, HIV/AIDS, and emerging health challenges like Zika, Ebola, and the coronavirus outbreaks. An American Cancer Society (ACS) Professor and former provost and executive vice president of the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, he has served as chair of the Pharmacology and Toxicology Department and Interim Dean at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth and as chair of the Board of Scientific Counselors for Clinical Sciences and Epidemiology at the National Cancer Institute. He is now the Chair of the Research Council of the ACS, overseeing research funding decisions of the ACS. 

As a physician-scientist and oncologist, Dr. Dmitrovsky moves his work from the bench to the bedside. An example is his role in establishing curative retinoic acid-based differentiation therapy for acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL), a treatment approved by the FDA. Dr. Dmitrovsky cloned the APL translocation product, PML/RARα, and patented the genetic test for this leukemia. He received the American Society of Clinical Oncology and ACS Award and Lecture for these discoveries. 

Dr. Dmitrovsky seeks to improve the public’s health through a caring and humanistic approach to leadership. At MD Anderson, he oversaw undergraduate and graduate programs and more than 4,000 clinical trials. He served as Principal Investigator of their National Institutes of Health-funded Cancer Center Core Grant, fostered collaborations with 33 sister institutions in 23 countries, and launched a pain medicine initiative for cancer patients in Ethiopia. He launched a Provost Protégé Program to promote leadership diversity of the faculty, broadened the reach of the Women Faculty Office by adding Minority Faculty Inclusion to its mission and created innovative training and research programs for nurses, undergraduate and graduate students, fellows, and faculty. Dr. Dmitrovsky and his team implemented a computer-based tobacco prevention and cessation program for the Houston independent school district that served 100,000 students and teachers. 

At the Frederick National Laboratory, he boosted collaborations with local, regional, national and international research institutions, colleges, and universities. An example is the new Frederick National Laboratory-Hood College life science conference that builds on the tradition of the popular National Cancer Institute and Hood College Oncogene Meetings. He built robust ties with historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). These include with Howard University, Morehouse College of Medicine, and other HBCUs. He helped implement novel benefits programs for staff facing health challenges from cancer, diabetes, or behavioral health concerns. During his tenure the Frederick National Laboratory facilitated with the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) practice-changing clinical trials for deadly infectious diseases. These were reported in multiple New England Journal of Medicine publications that led to FDA-approval for remdesivir and baricitinib for coronavirus sufferers. Monoclonals that counter Ebola outbreaks were also FDA-approved. One of these agents was manufactured at the Frederick National Laboratory. Work is now underway in resource-constrained and militarily unstable African countries. This effort explores new ways to combat Mpox, Malaria and other frightening outbreaks. 

Dr. Dmitrovsky graduated Magna Cum Laude from Harvard University and received his medical degree from Cornell University Medical College. His residency in Internal Medicine was at New York Hospital-Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and oncology fellowship was at the National Cancer Institute. He directs a laboratory focused on molecular pharmacology. Dr. Dmitrovsky was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI), Association of American Physicians (AAP) and is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).