Ernst Holzlöhner

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Ernst Holzlöhner (23 February 1899 in Insterburg, Germany – June 1945) was a German physiologist, university lecturer and national socialist.


Holzlöhner was a private lecturer and senior physician with Wilhelm Trendelenburg at the Physiological Institute of the University of Berlin. In 1932 he became a non-official a.o. Professor appointed. In 1933 he joined the NSDAP (Nazi party) and became lecturer at the University of Berlin. Later, Holzlöhner became SS-Sturmbannführer. In 1934, Holzlöhner received a full professorship for physiology at the University of Kiel. During this time, he became a lecturer at the University of Kiel and deputy leader of the Schleswig-Holstein lecturers' association. Together with his assistants Sigmund Rascher and Erich Finke, he carried out sub-cooling experiments on behalf of the Luftwaffe in the Dachau concentration camp from August 1942, in which prisoners were deliberately chilled to simulate winter conditions, then reheated using different methods. At the conference on medical questions in distress and winter death on October 26 and 27, 1942, he discussed the results of the cold tests. In April 1945, Holzlöhner was appointed Rector of the University of Kiel.

Holzwöhner was captured and interrogated by British soldiers after the end of the war. After the interrogation, he committed suicide in June 1945.