M. Rigdon Lentz, MD

M. Rigdon Lentz received his Bachelors degree at the University of Tennessee with a major in Biology. He graduated the U.S. Naval Aviation Officer Candidate School and became a Naval Aviator and received the "Distinguished Naval Graduate" award.

Dr. Lentz was a Naval Flight Instructor in Pensacola, Florida where he was elected "Instructor of the Year", and was the recipient of the Medical Officer Scholarship Award for medicine. He was graduated cum laude from Georgetown University Medical School in 1975 and was elected to AOA honor medical society and received the Mosby Scholarship award.

He completed his internship in General Surgery, residency in Internal Medicine and fellowship in Hematology/Oncology at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego.

He was the Chief of Oncology at the Naval Medical Center Long Beach, California. Dr. Lentz was appointed Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Diego and Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of California, Irvine.

In addition to maintaining a full time clinical practice in Hematology and Oncology, Dr. Lentz has served as Chairman, Hematology Oncology Department Chairman, Tumor Board Chairman, Cancer Committee Chairman, Tumor Registry, Chairman, Disaster Preparedness Committee, Member, Executive Committee and Credentials Committee.

He was the Principal investigator of the US Naval Leukopenia Research Project Phase 1, 2 and 3 studies, clinical and laboratory research.

He has served as Chairman of major tumor boards, director of cancer centers, and Principal Investigator of Phase 1 and 2 clinical trials both of drugs and medical devices.

Dr. Lentz is credited with the discovery of post-translational regulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines in cancer through shedding of membrane receptors.

This discovery led to the development of the anti-inflammatory drug Enbrel. He has been awarded numerous international patents for Methods and Systems to reverse immune tolerance in cancers and infectious disease.

Over 20 peer reviewed papers were authored by him. He co-authored two major textbooks and has given numerous international lectures on the subject of cytokine modulation in advanced cancers and has been an invited speaker at more than 100 major international conferences.

He is currently a senior research scientist of the International Center for Interdisciplinary Studies of Immunology of Georgetown University Medical Center, in Washington, D.C., serves as a Director of the Bavarian Immunology Association GmbH, Director of the non-profit International Immunology Foundation and is a consultant to many international biotech companies.

His main clinical interests are extending clinical responses to maximum disease free intervals obtained by Immunepheresis and the education of physicians about clinical applications of tumor immunology.

He continues to support R& D in the field of tumor immunology to maximize clinical outcomes for the benefit of patients and their families.

Advisory Board
Further reading
Selected literature related to the work of the Foundation

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