Department of Surgery »  Faculty »  Adult Cardiothoracic Surgery »  David M. Jablons, M.D.

David M. Jablons, M.D.

Professor and Chief, General Thoracic Surgery
Division of Adult Cardiothoracic Surgery,
Nan T. McEvoy Distinguished Professor of Thoracic Surgical Oncology
Ada Distinguished Professor of Thoracic Oncology
Program Leader Thoracic Oncology,
UCSF Helen Diller Comprehensive Cancer Center

Contact Information

(415) 885-3882  Patients & Clinic
(415) 353-7151  Fax  
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  • Yale University, B.A., American Literature, 1979
  • Albany Medical College of Union University, M.D., 1984
  • Oak Knoll Naval Hospital, Oakland, CA, General Surgery, 1984-85
  • Tufts University/New England Medical Center, General Surgery, 1985-86, 89-91
  • Weill Cornell University Medical Center, Cardiothoracic Surgery, 1991-93
  • NCI/NIH, Surgery Branch, Surgical Oncology, 1986-89
  • Brigham & Women's Hospital, Lung Transplantation, 1992
  • New York Hospital/Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Thoracic Surgery, 1992-93
  • American Board of Surgery
  • American Board of Thoracic Surgery
  • Thoracic Oncology Program
  • Member, UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Inflammation in lung carcinogenesis
  • Study of "systems genetics" in thoracic malignancies
  • Isolation of lung cancer stems cells
  • Clinical outcomes research
  • Discovery of novel therapeutic targets in in thoracic malignancies
  • Early Detection and Screening
  • Investigation of signal transduction pathways including Wnt, Hedgehog, and Hippo in lung cancer and mesothelioma
  • Lung cancer epigenetics and emerging biomarkers
  • Next generation sequencing
  • Prognostic molecular multi-gene assays in Early-Stage NSCLC

David M. Jablons M.D., FACS is Professor and Chief of the Section of General Thoracic Surgery at UCSF, and Program Leader of Thoracic Oncology.  Dr. Jablons is also Ada Distinguished Professor in Thoracic Oncology and Nan T. McEvoy Distinguished Professor of Thoracic Surgical Oncology. Dr. Jablons is Director of the Thoracic Oncology Lab, one of the largest in the Department of Surgery, with seven principal investigators, an enviable portfolio of NIH grants, and state-of-art-equipment. Utilizing next generation sequencing and leveraging one of the largest thoracic tissue banks in the world, the lab has compiled an enviable record of scientific discovery and invention including a life-saving prognostic assay that informs the decision for providing adjuvant therapy to early-stage lung cancer patients.

Dr. Jablons received his medical degree from Albany Medical College. During medical school, he was awarded an NCI preceptorship allowing him to train under Steven Rosenberg, a world-renowned surgeon and tumor immunologist. This experience kindled Dr. Jablons lifelong interest in translational and precision medicine. Dr. Jablons then completed his general surgery residency at Tufts-New England Medical Center and his thoracic surgery residency at what is now New York Presbyterian-Weill Cornell Medical Center. His mentors included Robert Ginsburg at Memorial Sloan-Kettering and David Sugarbaker at Brigham & Women's Hospital, both world-renown thoracic surgical oncologists. Dr. Jablons also served as a Navy commander while Chief of Thoracic Surgery at the Oakland Naval Hospital. In 1997, he was named Chief of General Thoracic Surgery at UCSF.

Dr. Jablons is a highly accomplished thoracic surgeon, widely sought out by patients in the Bay Area and world-wide. One patient, Bonnie J. Addario, after recovering from an arduous lung cancer surgery, started a foundation bearing her name she co-founded with Dr. Jablons. Today, the Addario Foundation is one of the leading underwriters of lung cancer research.  Dr. Jablons has also been a dedicated teacher and outstanding mentor for both for clinical fellows and surgical residents, the latter including Dan Raz and Johannes Kratz, protégés with an enviable and prolific record of publications who helped spearhead development of predictive and prognostic tools for lung cancer treatment in the lab.  

Dr. Jablons has been a trailblazer in educational outreach, co-founding the UCSF Thoracic Oncology Conference, an annual symposium that provided expert training for thousands of community surgeons for over a decade. He also was instrumental in establishing the China Clinical Trials Consortium to find more effective treatments for lung cancer, and to ameliorate the epidemic of lung cancer in China. In 2009, he led the effort to bring World Conference on Lung Cancer to San Francisco, the preeminent event in the field, in which he served as co-Chair. 

He is a member of numerous professional organizations including the Society of Thoracic Surgeons, the American College of Chest Physicians, the American Association for Cancer Research and the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC). Highly respected by his peers, Dr. Jablons was named to the list of U.S. News "America's Top Doctors," a distinction reserved for the top 1% of physicians in the nation for a given specialty. Dr. Jablons was recently inducted into the American Surgical Society, the nation's most prestigious. 

  • Surgical Resident Teaching Award, University of California, San Francisco, 2001
  • Surgical Resident Teaching Award , University of California, San Francisco , 1999

The Thoracic Oncology Lab focuses on drug target discovery, commercialization of novel therapeutics and development of genomic assays based on predictive and prognostic biomarkers.

ResidentYearsGrant or Funding Source
Gavitt Woodard, M.D. 2013- Jablons Lab
Natalie Lui, M.D., M.A.S. 2010-2012 Jablons Lab
Johannes R. Kratz, M.D. 2008-2011 Jablons Lab
Dan J. Raz, M.D. 2005-2007 Jablons Lab
Jae Kim, M.D. 2005-2007 Jablons Lab
Most recent publications from a total of 21
  1. Yue D, Li H, Che J, Zhang Y, Tolani B, Mo M, Zhang H, Zheng Q, Yang Y, Cheng R, Jin JQ, Luh TW, Yang C, Tseng HH, Giroux-Leprieur E, Woodard GA, Hao X, Wang C, Jablons DM, He B. EMX2 Is a Predictive Marker for Adjuvant Chemotherapy in Lung Squamous Cell Carcinomas. PLoS One. 2015; 10(7):e0132134. View in PubMed
  2. Letteboer TG, Benzinou M, Merrick CB, Quigley DA, Zhau K, Kim IJ, To MD, Jablons DM, van Amstel JK, Westermann CJ, Giraud S, Dupuis-Girod S, Lesca G, Berg JH, Balmain A, Akhurst RJ. Genetic variation in the functional ENG allele inherited from the non-affected parent associates with presence of pulmonary arteriovenous malformation in hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia 1 (HHT1) and may influence expression of PTPN14. Front Genet. 2015; 6:67. View in PubMed
  3. Zhang S, Yang YL, Wang Y, You B, Dai Y, Chan G, Hsieh D, Kim IJ, Fang LT, Au A, Stoppler HJ, Xu Z, Jablons DM, You L. CK2a, over-expressed in human malignant pleural mesothelioma, regulates the Hedgehog signaling pathway in mesothelioma cells. J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2014; 33(1):93. View in PubMed
  4. Mo ML, Ma J, Chen Z, Wei B, Li H, Zhou Y, Shi H, Tolani B, Jin JQ, Tseng HH, Shen D, Zhan Y, Li J, Jablons DM, Zhang RQ, Guo Y, He B, Zhou HM. Measurement of genome-wide DNA methylation predicts survival benefits from chemotherapy in non-small cell lung cancer. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 2015 May; 141(5):901-8. View in PubMed
  5. Reza J, Sammann A, Jin C, Horvai A, Hudnall M, Jablons DM, Jahan T, Kornak J, Mann MJ. Aggressive and minimally invasive surgery for pulmonary metastasis of sarcoma. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2014 Apr; 147(4):1193-200; discussion 1200-1. View in PubMed
  6. Fang LT, Lee S, Choi H, Kim HK, Jew G, Kang HC, Chen L, Jablons D, Kim IJ. Comprehensive genomic analyses of a metastatic colon cancer to the lung by whole exome sequencing and gene expression analysis. Int J Oncol. 2014 Jan; 44(1):211-21. View in PubMed
  7. Zhi X, Gao W, Han B, Yang Y, Li H, Liu D, Wang C, Min G, Long H, Rigas JR, Carey M, Jahan T, Sammann A, Reza J, Wang D, Mann MJ, Jablons DM, He J. VATS lobectomy facilitates the delivery of adjuvant docetaxel-carboplatin chemotherapy in patients with non-small cell lung cancer. J Thorac Dis. 2013 Oct; 5(5):578-84. View in PubMed
  8. Kim HK, Jablons DM, Kim IJ. Multistep Progression from Atypical Adenomatous Hyperplasia to Lung Adenocarcinoma: Clinico-Pathologic, Epigenetic and Genetic Aspects. J Surgery. 2013; 1(1):10. View in PubMed
  9. Bosco-Clément G, Zhang F, Chen Z, Zhou HM, Li H, Mikami I, Hirata T, Yagui-Beltran A, Lui N, Do HT, Cheng T, Tseng HH, Choi H, Fang LT, Kim IJ, Yue D, Wang C, Zheng Q, Fujii N, Mann M, Jablons DM, He B. Targeting Gli transcription activation by small molecule suppresses tumor growth. Oncogene. 2014 Apr 17; 33(16):2087-97. View in PubMed
  10. Kim IJ, Quigley D, To MD, Pham P, Lin K, Jo B, Jen KY, Raz D, Kim J, Mao JH, Jablons D, Balmain A. Rewiring of human lung cell lineage and mitotic networks in lung adenocarcinomas. Nat Commun. 2013; 4:1701. View in PubMed
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