Mark M. Moasser, MD

Mark M. Moasser, MD

Professor, Department of Medicine (Hematology/Oncology), UCSF

Phone: (415) 353-7070 (appts)
Box 1387, UCSF
San Francisco, CA 94143-1387

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Cancer Center Membership

Program Member » Breast Oncology» Developmental Therapeutics

Research Summary

I run a translational cancer research program focused on translating our understanding of tyrosine kinase signaling in epithelial cancers into better treatments for patients with cancer. My training and career encompasses both the clinical practice of Medical Oncology and clinical research in Oncology, as well as leading a scientific laboratory research program. This hybrid clinical-scientific involvement gives me the exposure, knowledge base, and insights required for the optimal pursuit of translational cancer research. I pursue clinically relevant scientific questions at the bench, and I translate our scientific discoveries into clinical trials. I have a track record of several clinical trials emerging directly from our laboratory discoveries. My role as co-chair of the early phase clinical trials unit puts me at the front lines of clinical drug development, aware of the challenges, early results, and pipelines.
A major focus of my research program has been on the oncogene HER2. I believe that HER2-amplified cancer should be a curable disease even in advanced stage, and my research program is focused on the pursuit of this mission. This endeavor requires the full spectrum of disciplines including the most basic structure and structure-function studies, to cell signaling and network topology, to tumor biology, mouse models and mouse prelicinical studies, to early phase clinical trials. Our work is greatly enhanced by the highly collaborative environment within which I work, with close collaborations with structural biologists including John Kuriyan and Natalia Jura, with the small-molecule discovery groups of Jim Wells, Michelle Arkin, and Adam Renslo, with investigators in Chemical Biology and Biochemistry & Biophysics including Kevan Shokat, Jack Taunton, and David Agard. I have a track record of assembling multi-disciplinary teams to focus on our disease-oriented mission of HER2-amplified cancer. This has included a Susan G. Komen for the Cure Promise Grant scientific project, a California Breast Cancer Research Program Translational Research Award project, and an AACR-BCRF Translational Breast Cancer Research project.


University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, B.A., 1984
Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, M.D., 1988
The New York Hospital - Cornell Medical Center, New York, NY, 1988-1991, Internal Medicine (Residency)
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY, 1991-1996, Medical Oncology (Fellowship)

Professional Experience

  • 1996-1999
    Instructor, Breast Cancer Medicine Service, Division of Solid Tumor Oncology, Dept of Medicine, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY
  • 1999-2004
    Clinical Assistant, Breast Cancer Medicine Service, Division of Solid Tumor Oncology, Dept Of Medicine, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY
  • 2004-2007
    Associate Clinical Professor, Department of Medicine and Cancer Center, Breast Cancer Program, University of California, San Francisco
  • 2008-2010
    Associate Professor in Residence, Department of Medicine, Division of Hematology/Oncology, University of California, San Francisco
  • 2010-present
    Professor in Residence, Department of Medicine, Division of Hematology/Oncology, University of California, San Francisco

Honors & Awards

  • 1984
    Phi Beta Kappa
  • 1992-1993
    Clinical and Molecular Cancer Research Training Fellowship Award
  • 1994
    American Society for Clinical Oncology Young Investigator Award (declined)
  • 1993-1995
    Charles A. Dana Fellowship Award
  • 1993-1995
    Clinical Scholars Award, Biomedical Research Training Program, Sloan-Kettering Institute
  • 1995-1996
    Ethel Abbott Fellowship Award
  • 1997-1999
    Byrne Fund Award
  • 1997-2000
    American Society for Clinical Oncology Career Development Award
  • 2002-2006
    American Cancer Society Research Scholar
  • 2005-2007
    Susan Komen Breast Cancer Research Foundation Award
  • 2005-2006
    California Breast Cancer Research Program Award
  • 2008
    Elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation

Selected Publications

  1. Moasser MM, Krop IE. The Evolving Landscape of HER2 Targeting in Breast Cancer. JAMA Oncol. 2015 Nov 1; 1(8):1154-61.
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  2. Chang YH, Korkola J, Amin DN, Moasser MM, Carmena JM, Gray JW, Tomlin CJ. Disentangling multidimensional spatio-temporal data into their common and aberrant responses. PLoS One. 2015; 10(4):e0121607.
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  3. Ruiz-Saenz A, Sandhu M, Carrasco Y, Maglathlin RL, Taunton J, Moasser MM. Targeting HER3 by interfering with its Sec61-mediated cotranslational insertion into the endoplasmic reticulum. Oncogene. 2015 Jan 26.
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  4. Campbell MR, Moasser MM. HER Targeting in HER2-Negative Breast Cancers: Looking for the HER3 Positive. Clin Cancer Res. 2015 Jul 1; 21(13):2886-8.
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  5. Masters GA, Krilov L, Bailey HH, Brose MS, Burstein H, Diller LR, Dizon DS, Fine HA, Kalemkerian GP, Moasser M, Neuss MN, O'Day SJ, Odenike O, Ryan CJ, Schilsky RL, Schwartz GK, Venook AP, Wong SL, Patel JD. Clinical cancer advances 2015: annual report on progress against cancer from the american society of clinical oncology. J Clin Oncol. 2015 Mar 1; 33(7):786-809.
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  6. Hiatt RA, Porco TC, Liu F, Balke K, Balmain A, Barlow J, Braithwaite D, Diez-Roux AV, Kushi LH, Moasser MM, Werb Z, Windham GC, Rehkopf DH. A multilevel model of postmenopausal breast cancer incidence. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2014 Oct; 23(10):2078-92.
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  7. Moasser MM. Two dimensions in targeting HER2. J Clin Oncol. 2014 Jul 1; 32(19):2074-7.
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  8. Chien AJ, Munster PN, Melisko ME, Rugo HS, Park JW, Goga A, Auerback G, Khanafshar E, Ordovas K, Koch KM, Moasser MM. Phase I dose-escalation study of 5-day intermittent oral lapatinib therapy in patients with human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-overexpressing breast cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2014 May 10; 32(14):1472-9.
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  9. Littlefield P, Moasser MM, Jura N. An ATP-competitive inhibitor modulates the allosteric function of the HER3 pseudokinase. Chem Biol. 2014 Apr 24; 21(4):453-8.
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  10. Spassov DS, Wong CH, Wong SY, Reiter JF, Moasser MM. Trask loss enhances tumorigenic growth by liberating integrin signaling and growth factor receptor cross-talk in unanchored cells. Cancer Res. 2013 Feb 1; 73(3):1168-79.
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  11. Amin DN, Sergina N, Lim L, Goga A, Moasser MM. HER3 signalling is regulated through a multitude of redundant mechanisms in HER2-driven tumour cells. Biochem J. 2012 Nov 1; 447(3):417-25.
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  12. Spassov DS, Wong CH, Harris G, McDonough S, Phojanakong P, Wang D, Hann B, Bazarov AV, Yaswen P, Khanafshar E, Moasser MM. A tumor-suppressing function in the epithelial adhesion protein Trask. Oncogene. 2012 Jan 26; 31(4):419-31.
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  13. Munster PN, Thurn KT, Thomas S, Raha P, Lacevic M, Miller A, Melisko M, Ismail-Khan R, Rugo H, Moasser M, Minton SE. A phase II study of the histone deacetylase inhibitor vorinostat combined with tamoxifen for the treatment of patients with hormone therapy-resistant breast cancer. Br J Cancer. 2011 Jun 7; 104(12):1828-35.
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  14. Spassov DS, Ahuja D, Wong CH, Moasser MM. The structural features of Trask that mediate its anti-adhesive functions. PLoS One. 2011; 6(4):e19154.
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  15. Spassov DS, Wong CH, Moasser MM. Trask phosphorylation defines the reverse mode of a phosphotyrosine signaling switch that underlies cell anchorage state. Cell Cycle. 2011 Apr 15; 10(8):1225-32.
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  16. McArthur HL, Rugo H, Nulsen B, Hawks L, Grothusen J, Melisko M, Moasser M, Paulson M, Traina T, Patil S, Zhou Q, Steingart R, Dang C, Morrow M, Cordeiro P, Fornier M, Park J, Seidman A, Lake D, Gilewski T, Theodoulou M, Modi S, D'Andrea G, Sklarin N, Robson M, Moynahan ME, Sugarman S, Sealey JE, Laragh JH, Merali C, Norton L, Hudis CA, Dickler MN. A feasibility study of bevacizumab plus dose-dense doxorubicin-cyclophosphamide (AC) followed by nanoparticle albumin-bound paclitaxel in early-stage breast cancer. Clin Cancer Res. 2011 May 15; 17(10):3398-407.
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  17. Spassov DS, Wong CH, Sergina N, Ahuja D, Fried M, Sheppard D, Moasser MM. Phosphorylation of Trask by Src kinases inhibits integrin clustering and functions in exclusion with focal adhesion signaling. Mol Cell Biol. 2011 Feb; 31(4):766-82.
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  18. Amin DN, Campbell MR, Moasser MM. The role of HER3, the unpretentious member of the HER family, in cancer biology and cancer therapeutics. Semin Cell Dev Biol. 2010 Dec; 21(9):944-50.
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  19. Campbell MR, Amin D, Moasser MM. HER3 comes of age: new insights into its functions and role in signaling, tumor biology, and cancer therapy. Clin Cancer Res. 2010 Mar 1; 16(5):1373-83.
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  20. Amin DN, Sergina N, Ahuja D, McMahon M, Blair JA, Wang D, Hann B, Koch KM, Shokat KM, Moasser MM. Resiliency and vulnerability in the HER2-HER3 tumorigenic driver. Sci Transl Med. 2010 Jan 27; 2(16):16ra7.
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