Ian Magrath DSc (Med), FRCP, FRCPath


Ian Magrath is an oncologist specialized in the molecular characterization and treatment of hematological malignancies. He worked at the NCI, Bethesda for 25 years before becoming the President of INCTR some 10 years ago.
Since that time he has focused, consistent with the organization's mission, on building capacity for cancer control in low and middle income countries - particularly in the context of cancers in women and children.

Present Positions:

President and Director (Medical and Scientific), International Network for Cancer Treatment and Research, Brussels, Belgium (since 1999)

Adjunct Professor of Pediatrics at the University of the Uniformed Services in the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland, USA.

Relevant past positions:

Chief, Lymphoma Biology Section, NCI, MD, USA (until 1999)

Director, Lymphoma Treatment Center, Kampala, Uganda (1971-73)

Ian Magrath received his qualifications in medicine from the University of London. He holds a higher doctoral degree in Medicine from Imperial College, London University and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal College of Pathologists. He has a special interest in the pathogenesis and treatment of non-Hodgkin's lymphomas, which developed early in his career when he spent 2 years as Director of the Lymphoma Treatment Center in Kampala (University of Makerere), Uganda. He subsequently joined the National Cancer Institute (NCI), Bethesda, Maryland (1974), and became Chief of the Lymphoma Biology Section of the Pediatric Oncology Branch. His work at the NCI was focused on the treatment and molecular pathogenesis of non-Hodgkin lymphomas, particularly Burkitt’s lymphoma, as well as the role of Epstein-Barr virus in the pathogenesis of the latter disease. Among other things, his work resulted in a number of insights into the molecular lesions that cause the Burkitt lymphoma, including approaches to their therapeutic exploitation, and the development of a highly effective treatment approach that resulted in a 5 year survival rate (which, in this disease is a cure rate) of approximately 90% in children and adults up to the age of 60 years. During the last 25 years, he has had a particular interest in cancer control in developing countries and has been involved in the conduct of cancer control projects, clinical trials and basic research in many parts of the world, including India, Pakistan, Nepal, China, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Turkey, Tanzania, Kenya, Nigeria and Egypt. This led to his present position as President of the International Network for Cancer Treatment and Research (INCTR) in Brussels (in 2000), although he retains a position at the NCI.

He has authored over 340 original articles, chapters, reviews, commentaries and editorials relating primarily to the pathogenesis and treatment of malignant lymphomas, pediatric cancers, cancer in developing countries and Epstein Barr Virus. He has also edited several books, including Pathogenesis of Leukemias and Lymphomas; New Directions in Cancer Treatment; The Non-Hodgkin's Lymphomas; and Gene Therapy. A new volume entitled “The Lymphoid Neoplasms” is in production with a publication date of early 2009.

Dr Magrath has served on the board of a number of cancer journals. He is presently a member of the WHO Technical Committee on Cancer Control and consultatnt to the WHO Essential Drugs Committee (cytoxics). Dr Magrath serves as INCTR Liaison to the Board of Directors of the UICC. In the recent past he served as consultant to the Committee for Cancer Control in Low and Middle Income countries established by the Institute of Medicine, Washington DC, which resulted in the publication of a report on Challenges and Opportunities for Cancer control in these countries.

He has won a number of awards, including the Khanolkar Award, the Cairo University Shield, the Bhoruka Award (India), and the recognition award from the Arab American Cancer Foundation. He was made an Honorary Member of the Peruvian Society of Medical Oncology in 2000, was the Ian Peter Rennert Lecturer, at Georgetown University, in 2003 and the recipient of the Special Award of the Excellence Committee of the First International Symposium on Childhood and Adolescent Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma for International Contributions to Pediatric Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, also in 2003. He was the recipient of the Spirit of Life Award for Cancer Research in 2004.

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