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James N. Kochenderfer, M.D.

Portait Photo of James Kochenderfer
Experimental Transplantation and Immunology Branch
Center for Cancer Research
National Cancer Institute
Building 10 - CRC - Room 3-3888
Bethesda, MD 20892


Dr. Kochenderfer is a clinician and translational researcher in the Experimental Transplantation and Immunology Branch of the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Dr. Kochenderfer conducts research aimed at developing new T-cell therapies for lymphoma and leukemia. His clinical expertise lies in the areas of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and hematologic malignancies. Dr. Kochenderfer received his M.D. from West Virginia University in 1995, and he completed clinical training in internal medicine at Vanderbilt University. He completed oncology and hematology fellowships at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and at Baylor College of Medicine. He completed further training in tumor immunology and stem cell transplantation at the NCI prior to assuming his current position as an Assistant Clinical Investigator.


Dr. Kochenderfer's research is aimed at developing T-cell therapies for hematogic malignancies. T cells normally play a critical role in fighting infections. Under certain circumstances, T cells can exert a powerful and specifically-targeted anti-malignancy effect. Dr. Kochenderfer's current laboratory work involves genetic engineering of T cells with genes encoding chimeric antigen receptors that target malignancy-associated antigens. This work has led to two clinical trials in which patients receive infusions of T cells that are genetically engineered to specifically recognize and eliminate cells expressing the CD19 antigen, which is expressed by most B-cell lymphomas and B-cell leukemias. These clinical trials have produced the first evidence that genetically-engineered T cells can eliminate CD19-expressing cells in humans.

This page was last updated on 7/3/2014.