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Department of Surgery »  Faculty »  General Surgery »  Laura J. Esserman, M.D., M.B.A.
Laura J. Esserman, M.D., M.B.A.

Laura J. Esserman, M.D., M.B.A.

Professor of Surgery and Radiology
Chief, Section of Breast Care Surgery
Division of General Surgery
Alfred A. de Lorimier Endowed Chair in General Surgery
Director, UCSF Carol Franc Buck Breast Care Center

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1974-77, Harvard University, A.B.
1978-83, Stanford University, M.D.

  • 1983-85, Stanford University School of Medicine, Resident, General Surgery
  • 1988-90, Stanford University School of Medicine, Resident, General Surgery
  • 1990-91, Stanford University School of Medicine, Chief Resident, General Surgery
  • 1985-88, Stanford University School of Medicine, Postdoctoral Fe, Oncology, Medical
  • 1991-93, Stanford University, M.B.A.
  • American Board of Surgery - General Surgery - 1992
  • UCSF Center of Excellence for Breast Cancer Care
  • UCSF Carol Frank Buck Breast Care Center
  • UCSF Helen Diller Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Breast Diseases
  • Breast Neoplasms
  • Cancer Vaccines
  • Genes
  • Intraductal Carcinoma
  • Male
  • Mammary
  • Mastectomy
  • Noninfiltrating Carcinoma Lobular
  • Oncogenes
  • Precancerous Conditions
  • Segmental
  • Tumor Suppressor
  • Ultrasonography
  • BRCA1 Protein
  • BRCA2 Protein
  • Infiltrating Duct Carcinoma

 

Dr. Laura Esserman, M.D., M.B.A is a surgeon and breast cancer oncology specialist practicing at the UCSF Carol Franc Buck Breast Care Center where she has also held the position of Director since 1996.  She co-leads the Breast Oncology Program, the largest of the UCSF Helen Diller Comprehensive Cancer Center's multidisciplinary programs. The program is comprised of 69 faculty members who represent 16 academic specialties and is internationally recognized and well-established with major initiatives in epidemiology, genetics, biology, therapeutics, and clinical cancer care.  She is a professor of Surgery & Radiology at UCSF and Associate Director of the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center where she has founded and led the program in Translational Informatics. As part of this program, her research has focused on bioinformatics, medical and clinical informatics, systems integration, and clinical care delivery.

 

Dr. Esserman received her Bachelor's degree in History of Science from Harvard University and completed her M.D. at Stanford University. She completed her surgery residency and oncology fellowship at Stanford University Medical Center.  After her training, she joined the faculty at Stanford and received a Hartford fellowship to attend Stanford Business School where she received her M.B.A. in 1993.  She then joined the faculty at the University of California, San Francisco.  She has worked at UCSF to develop interdisciplinary teams of clinicians and researchers to bring the best care to patients and find the best platform to integrate translational research and improve the delivery of breast cancer care.

 

Dr. Esserman has been a leader in the I-SPY TRIAL collaboration, a National Cancer Institute's (NCI) Center for Bioinformatics and SPORE program. In 2005, she received the NCI SPORE Investigator of the Year Award, an internationally recognized honor and designation.  As the Primary Investigator of a Department of Defense-funded Center of Excellence grant, she has also brought together an extraordinary, multidisciplinary group of investigators and health care industry partners to work on critical problems concerning the quality of breast cancer care. Highly respected by her peers, Dr. Esserman 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. Esserman is a prolific writer with numerous publications in peer-reviewed journals covering all aspects of breast health including information systems, immunology, decision making, health policy and the use of imaging. She speaks extensively at public and private forums within the U.S. and internationally.  Overall, Dr. Esserman's research and writing tends to focus on the goal of giving patients better access to accurate information so that they can become partners in their health care.

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  • Surgical Oncology Training Grant
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    Jul 2020
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    Jun 2025
    Principal Investigator
  • Extending the Diversity, Reach, and Generalizability of the WISDOM Study
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    Mar 2020
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    Feb 2025
    Principal Investigator
  • I-SPY2 +: Evolving the I-SPY 2 TRIAL to include MRI-directed, adaptive sequential treatment to optimize breast cancer outcomes
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    Sep 2017
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    Aug 2022
    Principal Investigator
  • Elucidating the molecular and contextual basis for IDLE ultralow risk lesions and the tumor immune microenvironment of high risk in situ and invasive breast cancers
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    Sep 2015
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    Aug 2020
    Principal Investigator
  • Modeling the Impact of Targeted Therapy Based on Breast Cancer Subtypes
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    Sep 2014
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    Aug 2019
    Principal Investigator
  • Integrated Biomarkers to Characterize Breast Cancer Risk
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    Sep 2004
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    Jun 2011
    Principal Investigator
Data provided by UCSF Profiles, powered by CTSI
MOST RECENT PUBLICATIONS FROM A TOTAL OF 348
Data provided by UCSF Profiles, powered by CTSI
  1. Magbanua MJM, Li W, Wolf DM, Yau C, Hirst GL, Swigart LB, Newitt DC, Gibbs J, Delson AL, Kalashnikova E, Aleshin A, Zimmermann B, Chien AJ, Tripathy D, Esserman L, Hylton N, van 't Veer L. Circulating tumor DNA and magnetic resonance imaging to predict neoadjuvant chemotherapy response and recurrence risk. NPJ Breast Cancer. 2021 Mar 25; 7(1):32. View in PubMed
  2. Abel MK, Greenwood H, Kelil T, Guo R, Brabham C, Hylton N, Wong J, Alvarado M, Ewing C, Esserman LJ, Boughey JC, Mukhtar RA. Accuracy of breast MRI in evaluating nodal status after neoadjuvant therapy in invasive lobular carcinoma. NPJ Breast Cancer. 2021 Mar 05; 7(1):25. View in PubMed
  3. Du L, Yau C, Brown-Swigart L, Gould R, Krings G, Hirst GL, Bedrosian I, Layman RM, Carter JM, Klein M, Venters S, Sonal S, van der Noordaa M, Chien AJ, Haddad T, Isaacs C, Pusztai L, Albain K, Nanda R, Tripathy D, Liu MC, Boughey J, Schwab R, Hylton N, DeMichele A, Perlmutter J, Yee D, Berry D, Veer LV, Valero V, Esserman L, Symmans WF. Predicted sensitivity to endocrine therapy for stage II-III hormone receptor-positive and HER2-negative (HR+/HER2-) breast cancer prior to chemo-endocrine therapy. Ann Oncol. 2021 Feb 19. View in PubMed
  4. Mori H, Bolen J, Schuetter L, Massion P, Hoyt CC, VandenBerg S, Esserman L, Borowsky AD, Campbell MJ. Characterizing the Tumor Immune Microenvironment with Tyramide-Based Multiplex Immunofluorescence. J Mammary Gland Biol Neoplasia. 2021 Feb 15. View in PubMed
  5. Scheepens JCC, Veer LV', Esserman L, Belkora J, Mukhtar RA. Contralateral prophylactic mastectomy: A narrative review of the evidence and acceptability. Breast. 2021 Feb 10; 56:61-69. View in PubMed
  6. View All Publications

 

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