COVID-19 updates, including vaccine information, for our patients and visitors, Learn More
About Ezra Cohen, MD, FRCPSC, FASCO
Ezra Cohen, MD, is a board-certified oncologist and an internationally renowned cancer researcher. He cares for patients with all types of head and neck cancers, including esophageal, thyroid and salivary gland cancers.
Dr. Cohen serves as co-director of UC San Diego Health's Precision Immunotherapy Clinic, which offers the most promising investigational immunotherapy treatments for many types of cancer, including head and neck cancers. At UC San Diego Health's Moores Cancer Center, he is associate director for translational science and the leader of the Solid Tumor Therapeutics research program.
As a physician-scientist, Dr. Cohen also leads a laboratory that studies novel cancer treatments, including immunotherapy, and has made major contributions in understanding how targeted cancer therapies work. Much of his work has focused on squamous cell carcinomas and cancers of the thyroid, salivary gland, and HPV-related oropharyngeal cancers. He is especially interested in understanding mechanisms of sensitivity or resistance; cancer screening; and using medication and other agents to delay or prevent cancer (chemoprevention).
His recent National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded work in the study of epidermal growth factor receptor inhibitors in head and neck cancer has contributed to the understanding of the biology of this critical signaling network, integration of these agents into standard of care, and definition of mechanisms to overcome resistance. He recently served as chair of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Head and Neck Cancer Steering Committee, which oversees NCI-funded clinical research in this disease.
Dr. Cohen recently served as editor-in-chief of Oral Oncology, the most respected specialty journal in head and neck cancer, and recently chaired two Multidisciplinary Head and Neck Cancer Symposia -the largest international meeting of its kind - sponsored by the American Society for Radiation Oncology, the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the American Head and Neck Society.
A frequent speaker at national and international meetings, he has authored more than 170 peer-reviewed papers and has been the principal investigator of multiple clinical trials of new drugs for head and neck cancer and other solid tumors in all phases of development. In addition, he has served as a grant reviewer for the NIH, American Association for Cancer Research, American Society of Clinical Oncology, and the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research.
Prior to joining UC San Diego Health in 2014, Dr. Cohen was co-director of the Head and Neck Cancer Program at the University of Chicago Comprehensive Cancer Center. A dedicated educator, Dr. Cohen also mentored and developed young faculty in his program.
Dr. Cohen completed a hematology/oncology fellowship at the University of Chicago, where he was named chief fellow. He completed residencies in family medicine at the University of Toronto and in internal medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Dr. Cohen earned his medical degree at University of Toronto. He is board certified in medical oncology, and a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (FRCPSC) and the American Society of Clinical Oncology (FASCO).
- University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada
- University of Chicago, Pritzker School of Medicine, Chicago, IL
- Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York City, NY
- University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Date Joined Staff
- Medical Oncology
Conditions and Treatments
- Head and Neck Cancer
- Cancer Immunotherapy
- Esophageal Cancer
- Thyroid Cancer
- Squamous Cell Carcinoma
Meet Ezra Cohen, MD: Medical Oncologist, Precision Immunotherapy ClinicMore videos
- Tamara Strauss, the first patient to enroll in a first-of-its-kind clinical trial at Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health to test a personalized vaccine using her unique cancer mutations to boost an anti-tumor immune response, joins Ezra Cohen, MD, associate director for translational science at Moores Cancer Center, and Stephen Schoenberger, PhD, professor of immunology at the La Jolla Institute for Allergy & Immunology, to talk about hope for a new personalized cancer vaccine. Drs. Cohen and Schoenberger developed a new technology that identifies a patient’s unique targets that can be used to create a vaccine specific to each individual person. The pilot study is enrolling 10 patients with solid tumors as a first step. To learn more about this research visit cancer.ucsd.edu.
- Choose UC San Diego Health for truly personalized cancer care at San Diego's only Comprehensive Cancer Center.