Skip to main content

Center for Applied Therapeutics

Photo of Herbert Kim Lyerly, MD

Herbert Kim Lyerly, MD

Office: 203 Research Drive, Medical Sciences Research Building, Suite 433, Durham, NC 27710
Phone: 919-681-8350

Scientific Focus

Dr. H. Kim Lyerly, M.D., F.A.C.S, is the Director for The Center for Applied Therapeutics. He is the George Barth Geller Professor in Cancer Research, Professor of Surgery, Associate Professor of Pathology and Assistant Professor of Immunology at Duke University in North Carolina. Dr. Lyerly is an internationally recognized expert in cancer therapy and immunotherapy and has published over 300 scientific articles and book chapters, and has edited 10 textbooks on surgery, cancer immunotherapy, and novel cancer therapies. 

The Center for Applied Therapeutics encompasses a broad array of research activities involved in the development, preclinical testing, and clinical testing of novel therapies targeting cancer or precancerous conditions.  Collectively, the Center for Applied Therapeutics consists of over 30 individuals ranging from senior scientists to post-doctoral fellows, which serves as a robust environment for research activity in a broad array of applied therapeutics. Major research areas of focus are:

Basic Sciences

  • Early Cancer Genomics and Biology

Translational and Clinical Sciences

  • In vivo Detection of Malignant Cells
  • Immune Therapy of Cancer

Population Sciences

  • Environmental Health Scholars
  • International/Global Studies

Selected Achievements

  1. The laboratory has been a pioneer in cancer immunotherapy, and has published and received peer reviewed funding for over 25 years.  We are currently working on a number of cancer immune strategies that include cancer vaccines, modulation of the local tumor microenvironment, and combination immunotherapy with checkpoint inhibitors.
  2. The laboratory has focused significant attention on the early detection and characterization of breast cancer.  We have a large research program in the genomic profiling of early and pre-invasive breast cancer as well the stromal and adaptive immune responses to early breast cancer.
  3. The laboratory has created an innovative informatics platform to process large data sets in search of new insights into genetic and environmental changes in individual health and population health.

Advanced Training

Individuals within the laboratory have the opportunity to participate in education and training available to Duke University faculty, staff and students. 

In addition to the Duke training, Dr. Lyerly leads an innovative regulatory sciences training program, the Accelerating Anticancer Agent Development and Validation Workshop held in Bethesda, Maryland, each spring (

Contact Us

203 Research Drive
Medical Sciences Research Building, Suite 433
Durham, NC 27710
Office phone: 919-681-8350

Latest Publications

Stilwell, JL, Hobeida, A, Birse, RT, Ericson, N, Ramirez, AB, Hummel, S, Irwin, D, Kaldjian, EP, and Lyerly, HK. "Detection of mutations in single tumor cells collected by fine needle aspiration in a mouse xenograft breast cancer model using MALDI-TOF." February 2018.


Zhou, X, Qiao, G, Wang, X, Song, Q, Morse, MA, Hobeika, A, Gwin, WR, Ren, J, and Lyerly, HK. "CYP1A1 genetic polymorphism is a promising predictor to improve chemotherapy effects in patients with metastatic breast cancer treated with docetaxel plus thiotepa vs. docetaxel plus capecitabine." Cancer chemotherapy and pharmacology 81, no. 2 (February 2018): 365-372.

Full Text

Crosby, EJ, Wei, J, Yang, XY, Lei, G, Wang, T, Liu, CX, Agarwal, P, Korman, AJ, Morse, MA, Gouin, K, Knott, SRV, Lyerly, HK, and Hartman, ZC. "Complimentary mechanisms of dual checkpoint blockade expand unique T-cell repertoires and activate adaptive anti-tumor immunity in triple-negative breast tumors (Accepted)." OncoImmunology (January 19, 2018).

Full Text

Song, Q, Ren, J, Zhou, X, Wang, X, Song, G, Hobeika, A, Yuan, Y, and Lyerly, HK. "Circulating CD8+CD28- suppressor T cells tied to poorer prognosis among metastatic breast cancer patients receiving adoptive T-cell therapy: A cohort study." Cytotherapy 20, no. 1 (January 2018): 126-133.

Full Text