This page will have some of the specialists that deal with mesothelioma.
I know I am from New Zealand and these specialists are going to be from other countries, but I will add our ones when I can find them.


 David J. Sugarbaker, M.D.

        Dr. David J Sugarbaker MD 


Medical Degree:
Cornell University Medical College 1979
Peter Bent Brigham Hospital-Intern in Surgery
Peter Bent Brigham Hospital-
Junior Resident in Surgery 1980-1982
Brigham and Women's Hospital-
Senor Resident in Surgery 1984-1985
Toronto General Hospital,
Mount Sinai Hospital For Sick Children,
U. of Toronto-
Chief Resident in Thoracic Surgery
Toronto General Hospital-
Chief Resident in Cardiac Surgery 1987-1988
Hospital For Sick Children,
U. of Toronto-Resident in Surgery
Research Fellow in Gastroenterology,
The Charles A. Dana Research Institute,
and the Harvard, Thorndyke  Laboratory,
Beth Israel Hospital
Harvard Medical School - 1982-1984
Arthur Tracey Cabot Fellow in Surgery,
Assistant to the Chief of Surgery,
Chief Resident Surgeon,
Brigham and Women's Hospital - 1985-1986 -------

Board Certifications:
Surgery 1987
Thoracic Surgery 1989
Academic Appointments:
Assistant Professor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School - 1988-1993
Associate Professor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School - 1993-1999
Richard E. Wilson Professor of Surgical Oncology, Harvard Medical School - 1999-

Dr. Sugarbaker is board certified in Thoracic Surgery and Surgery.

He attended Wheaton College and Cornell University Medical School.
He completed his Surgery residency at Brigham and Women's
Hospital and Cardiothoracic training
at the Toronto General Hospital
as Chief Resident in Thoracic Surgery
and Chief Resident in Cardiac Surgery.
His specific interests are in
general thoracic surgery,
Minimally invasive surgery,
Lung volume reduction surgery,
Oesophageal cancer,
Non-small cell lung cancer, and video-assisted thoracic surgery(VATS).
Dr. Sugarbaker has been actively involved in the development of several programs.
These include The Division of Thoracic Surgery 1988-present,
the Brigham Lung Transplant Program,
The Thoracic Oncology Program at the DFCI/BWH 1995-present,
Surgical Services at the DFCI 1996-present,
the Lung Volume Reduction Program at BWH 1996-present.


In addition he has been active in the development of new minimally invasive surgical procedures
and actively involved in the areas of therapy of thoracic malignancy.
Malignant pleural mesothelioma has been a central focus of
Dr. Sugarbaker's clinical and laboratory research.
A trimodality therapeutic approach based on
extrapleural pneumonectomy and adjuvant chemotherapy and radiation
was developed and examined in a consecutive series of patients.
Analysis of this series has revealed improved overall survival
with acceptable morbidity and operative mortality,
and has elucidated new prognostic variables in this disease.
These include cell type nodal status and resectablity,
which have formed the foundation of a new staging system currently in use,
which was presented to the American Surgical Association in 1996.
Laboratory investigation in mesothelioma
has entailed the banking of frozen samples of more than 100 mesotheliomas that are currently the focus of research
examining molecular markers in this disease.
One important project seeks a definitive answer as to the potential role of Simian Virus 40 exposure
(e.g. via contaminated polio vaccine) in mesothelioma through collaborative involvement with the NIH SV-40 working group.

As Chair of the Surgery Committee of the Cancer and Leukemia Group B (CALGB), it has been possible for Dr. Sugarbaker to play a leadership role in developing the clinical investigation of the role of surgery in cancer therapy trials, with the support of NCI U10 funding.
This effort has supported the clinical investigation of new therapies in thoracic, GI and breast malignancies.
These prospective clinical investigations have led to further NCI U10 support to examine the efficacy of new innovative minimally invasive thoracic surgery techniques
in the staging and treatment of thoracic malignancy
Concurrent laboratory work has focused on prognostic factors in stage I non-small cell lung cancer.
Although surgery alone is standard therapy in this group of patients,
30-40% of them will succumb to recurrent disease.
Identification of molecular and pathologic prognostic markers
indicating metastatic potential
in resected stage I tumors
will facilitate selection of patients for adjuvant therapy.
The evaluation of markers in our laboratory has led to the publication
of a molecular sub staging system for
stage I non-small cell lung cancer.
The prognostic significance of markers currently
under study utilizes specimens
from our respiratory tissue bank.
The establishment of the respiratory tissue bank in 1991 has led to the development
of new methodologies for tissue processing and storage.
This activity has led to extremely fruitful collaborative research projects.
Prominent among these is "A gene expression approach to
Adenocarcinoma classification",
a funded response to the NCI Director's Challenge involving investigators at the Whitehead Institute,

Others have focused on the role of cell cycle regulatory pathways
(Rb, cyclin D1, p16), matrix metalloproteinases (stromelysin-3),
adhesion/motility proteins (paxillin, gelsolin),
retinoid receptors and macrophage stimulating protein
in the pathogenesis and metastasis of lung cancer.
The bank has also supported large-scale gene discovery
and expression profiling work in malignant pleural mesothelioma.
"Evaluation of assays for detection of Simian Virus 40 DNA in Mesotheliomas",
a multicenter study by the International SV40 Working Group
organized by the Viral Epidemiology Branch of the NCI,
utilized specimens from the bank in a careful investigation of this sensitive public health issue.
Recently, the scope of the bank has been expanded.
The BWH Tissue and Blood Repository
now serves a broader role as an institutional core facility
for specimen procurement and distribution
in a wide array of malignancies
as well as benign and neo-plastic tissues,
blood, cells and nucleic acids.

Dr. Sugarbaker serves as co-director
and operations chair.
Dr Sugarbaker is Chief of Thoracic Surgery
at Brigham and Women's Hospital
and the Richard E. Wilson
Professor of Surgical Oncology
at Harvard Medical School.


        ©2008, Division of Thoracic Surgery at Brigham and Women's Hospital.

All  rights reserved.

Correspondence between Dr. David Sugarbaker, and Dr. Tamara Tilleman and  
myself regarding permission to add this content to my website

Sent 14th April
To Dr, David Sugarbaker.
I first heard about you after my husband died from Pleural Mesothelioma in 1997,
while I was searching for info on something
that I did not know much about.
I came across your name so many times and really
wished that we had lived close to you at that time.
Anyway I set up a website on "HOPE" and what it is like for a person
when it is taken away from you
What I would like to know is could I possibly put in the piece on you at 

My website is


If you do have time to look at it and can add anything I would greatly appreciate it

Regards from Deidre

Reply from David John, Sugarbaker, M.D.


Fri 24/04/2009 10:10 p.m
Yes that's fine Dr Tilleman can help. Many thanks.

cc.Tilleman, Tamara, M.D.,Ph.D.

Dear Mrs. VanGerven,

If people can see what you do it will give them somewhere to start their  journey of hope.

Thank you very much for your email.

I looked at your website and it is a unique memorial web to your husband Thom.
In addition to the Chestsurg web, we have 2 websites dedicated only to Mesothelioma:
http://www.brighamandwomens.org/mesothelioma/. and: www.impmeso.org.

The first (under the Hospital's domain) is a comprehensive website that is updated weekly and has information about the disease, treatment, the most updated articles published, and information about research and support. In addition one can watch there Dr. Sugarbaker and the team performing an operation, our mesothelioma genetic project (transcriptome), the Division's presentations at the recent meeting of American Association for Thoracic Surgery and patients testimonials.

Please let me know how can we help and feel free to link to our websites.


Tamara Raveh Tilleman, M.D., Ph.D.
Medical Director Clinical Research
Division of Thoracic Surgery
Brigham and Women's Hospital
1620 Tremont Street, 4th Floor 4-020p
Boston, MA  02120
Cell:  or

Dr. Robert Brian Cameron
Director of the Mesothelioma Research program
dr cameron
Hi Deidre:
It was very interesting to see your website
and thank you for making us aware of it.
I like the creativity of it
and I think you did a good job of explaining asbestos.
I am so sorry that you lost your husband to mesothelioma
and that it has affected your family as much as it has.
That is just too bad.
I hear however, that mesothelioma
is pretty bad in Australia,
but is it high in NZ too?
I would love you to put some information
on Dr. Cameron on your website.
I see that you have included Dr. Sugarbaker.

Dr. Cameron is a foremost expert in the field of mesothelioma
and has been working with meso patients for over 18 years.
He is Director of the Mesothelioma Research program
at the David Geffen School of Medicine and
Chief of Thoracic Surgery at the VA.
The Pacific Meso Center is proud to have
Dr. Robert Cameron as its Scientific Advisor.
Dr. Cameron is one of the leading experts
on the treatment of pleural mesothelioma,
a rare cancer of the linings
of the lungs caused by asbestos.
Through its association with Dr. Cameron,
PMC is an authoritative resource from which
mesothelioma patients can obtain information on
the latest treatment options
as well as access to other patients,
Dr. Cameron's Nurse Practitioner Anne Rorie
and Dr. Cameron himself,
to help them make informed treatment decisions.
PMC also supports the research efforts of Dr. Cameron
which may someday lead to a cure for mesothelioma.

Dr. Robert Cameron is a cardiothoracic surgeon
and surgical oncologist
who specializes in the treatment
of malignant pleural mesothelioma.
Dr. Cameron is the director of the mesothelioma program
at the David Geffen School of Medicine
at the University of California,
Los Angeles (UCLA) and the chief of thoracic surgery
at the West Los Angeles Veterans’
Administration Medical Center.
Dr. Cameron is board certified in general surgery
and cardiothoracic surgery.
He attended medical school at the
University of Michigan and UCLA,
where he obtained his medical degree
and was elected to early membership
in the Alpha Omega Alpha Honour Society
after his second year at the
University of Michigan

He completed three years of training
as a clinical associate in surgical oncology
at the National Cancer Institute of the
National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland,
a five-year residency in general surgery at UCLA,
and a two-year fellowship in cardiothoracic surgery
at Cornell-New York Hospital and
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.
Dr. Cameron is a fellow in the American College of Surgeons
and a member of the Society of Surgical Oncology,
the Society of Thoracic Surgeons,
the Western Thoracic Surgical Association,
the American Society of Clinical Oncology,
the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer,
the Pacific Coast Surgical Association,
the International Society for Biologic Therapy of Cancer,
the American Association for Cancer Research
and the International College of Surgeons.

Dr Cameron has authored or co-authored
more than 35 papers regarding oncology,
thoracic surgery, and other topics subject
to peer review in medical journals,
as well as more than 38 book chapters.

He has edited two textbooks,
one on laboratory research techniques
and one Practical Oncology,
on the treatment of cancer.
He has given numerous invited lectures.
He has reviewed articles submitted by others for
Annals of Thoracic Surgery, Cancer Research,
the Annals of Surgical Oncology,
Lung Cancer, the Journal of Immunology,
the Journal of the National Cancer Institute,
the Annals of Surgery,
the Journal of Immunotherapy,
and as well as other publications.

Dr. Cameron is a co-founder and former director
of the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation,
the first medical research foundation
dedicated to sponsoring research into
advancements in the diagnosis
and treatment of mesothelioma.
Dr. Cameron has been treating mesothelioma patients
for over 20 years.
He is the innovator of the lung-sparing
Pleurectomy / Decortication surgical procedure
for mesothelioma and has performed the procedure
on hundreds of patients to date.

You can see more on Dr. Cameron by visiting the website below.


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