USA College of Medicine Mourns Loss of Dr. James William Rohrer

James William Rohrer, Ph.D., associate professor of microbiology and immunology at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine, passed away on October 25, 2011.

He joined the faculty at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine in 1979. Dr. Rohrer served as associate professor for basic medical sciences in the microbiology and immunology department at the USA College of Medicine from October 1985 to October 25, 2011. He was an assistant professor of microbiology and immunology from 1979 to 1985.

Dr. Rohrer, graduated with a B. A. in zoology from the University of Kansas in 1969 and received his Ph.D. in microbiology from the University of Kansas in 1975. He carried out his postdoctoral study at Washington University School of Medicine in the Department of Pathology under Dr. Richard G. Lynch. Dr. Rohrer was awarded a National Cancer Institute Postdoctoral Fellowship and a Leukemia Society of America Special Fellowship during his postdoctoral training.

Dr. Rohrer published a number of articles in the area of cellular and tumor immunology. His current research was focused on characterizing the T and B lymphocyte response to immature laminin receptor protein (iLRP) during tumorigensis. This protein is found during development and on a wide range of tumor cells. Along with his colleagues, Dr. Adel Barsoum and Dr. Joseph Coggin (deceased), he demonstrated that the response to this protein could be the basis for a novel vaccine cancer treatment. Over the past few years, Dr. Rohrer was an investigator on a FDA-approved clinical trial to test the vaccine for treatment of patients with metastatic breast cancer.

In addition, to his research efforts, Dr. Rohrer was a dedicated teacher of medical and graduate students. During his career, Dr. Rohrer directed thesis dissertations for Drs. Michael Amos, Filomena Dimayuga, and Pippa Abston.

Dr. Rohrer was a member of the American Association of Immunologists, and served the university on many committees.


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