Research Summary

Dr. Melike Pekmezci is a pathologist, a doctor who examines samples from the body to detect disease. She specializes in diagnosing tumors and nontumorous abnormalities of the brain, spinal cord and eye.

Pekmezci's research involves using molecular features to classify and grade tumors (growths of abnormal tissue), which helps with predicting how quickly a particular growth may enlarge or spread. She seeks to identify diagnostic and prognostic markers, with the goal of improving management and treatment of conditions related to these tumors.

Pekmezci earned her medical degree from Hacettepe University Faculty of Medicine in Ankara, Turkey. She did two-years of postgraduate training in clinical ophthalmology in Gazi University in Ankara, Turkey. She completed a residency in anatomical pathology and fellowships in surgical pathology and neuropathology at UCSF.

Pekmezci is a member of the United States & Canadian Academy of Pathology, American Association of Neuropathologists, Verhoeff-Zimmerman Society, and American Association of Ophthalmic Oncologists and Pathologists. She has published more than 75 peer-reviewed manuscripts on brain and eye diseases, along with numerous case reports, book chapters and reviews.


Hacettepe University Faculty of Medicine, M.D., 06/2004
Gazi University, Department of Ophthalmology, Resident, 04/2007 (Ophthalmology)
University of California San Francisco, Department of Ophthalmology, Research fellow, 07/2009 (Ophthalmology)
Loyola University Medical Center, Department of Pathology, Resident, 06/2011 (Pathology)
University of California San Francisco, Department of Pathology, Resident, 06/2012 (Pathology)
University of California San Francisco, Department of Pathology, Clinical fellow, 06/2014 (Neuropathology)
University of California San Francisco, Department of Pathology, Clinical Fellow, 06/2015 (Surgical Pathology)
University of California San Francisco, Department of Pathology, Clinical fellow, 06/2016 (Surgical Pathology and Cytopathology)

Selected Publications

  1. Zhang YS, Jiro M, Pekmezci M, Winn B. Poorly differentiated orbital neuroendocrine carcinoma. BMJ Case Rep. 2023 Aug 30; 16(8).  View on PubMed
  2. Williams EA, Ravindranathan A, Gupta R, Stevers NO, Suwala AK, Hong C, Kim S, Yuan JB, Wu J, Barreto J, Lucas CG, Chan E, Pekmezci M, LeBoit PE, Mully T, Perry A, Bollen A, Van Ziffle J, Devine WP, Reddy AT, Gupta N, Basnet KM, Macaulay RJB, Malafronte P, Lee H, Yong WH, Williams KJ, Juratli TA, Mata DA, Huang RSP, Hiemenz MC, Pavlick DC, Frampton GM, Janovitz T, Ross JS, Chang SM, Berger MS, Jacques L, Song JS, Costello JF, Solomon DA. Novel SOX10 indel mutations drive schwannomas through impaired transactivation of myelination gene programs. Neuro Oncol. 2023 Dec 08; 25(12):2221-2236.  View on PubMed
  3. Guney E, Lucas CG, Singh K, Pekmezci M, Fernandez-Pol S, Mirchia K, Toland A, Vogel H, Bannykh S, Schafernak KT, Alexandrescu S, Mobley BC, Powell S, Davidson CJ, Neltner J, Boué DR, Hattab E, Ferris SP, Ohgami RS, Rubenstein JL, Bollen AW, Tihan T, Perry A, Solomon DA, Wen KW. Molecular profiling identifies at least 3 distinct types of posttransplant lymphoproliferative disorder involving the CNS. Blood Adv. 2023 07 11; 7(13):3307-3311.  View on PubMed
  4. Ahmad TR, Pekmezci M, Bloomer MM, Grenert JP, Afshar AR. Next-generation sequencing of a large uveal melanoma with whole genome doubling and a PBRM1 mutation. Am J Ophthalmol Case Rep. 2023 Sep; 31:101861.  View on PubMed
  5. Meer E, Ahmad M, Pekmezci M, Kersten RC. A Case of Orbital Sarcoidosis with Caseating Granulomatous Inflammation. Ophthalmic Plast Reconstr Surg. 2023 Sep-Oct 01; 39(5):e163-e166.  View on PubMed
  6. Terry M, Reis G, Horvai A, Pekmezci M, Perry A. Sarcomatous Transformation of a Medically Treated Lactotroph Pituitary Neuroendocrine Tumor? Endocr Pathol. 2023 03; 34(1):161-163.  View on PubMed
  7. Han LM, Lee KW, Uludag G, Seider MI, Afshar AR, Bloomer MM, Pekmezci M. Prognostic Value of BAP1 and Preferentially Expressed Antigen in Melanoma (PRAME) Immunohistochemistry in Uveal Melanomas. Mod Pathol. 2023 04; 36(4):100081.  View on PubMed
  8. Ma CJ, Pekmezci M, Stewart JM. Rapid pre-retinal ossification presenting as a vascularized lesion over an area of chronic retinal detachment. Am J Ophthalmol Case Rep. 2023 Mar; 29:101791.  View on PubMed
  9. Ladwig NR, Bean GR, Pekmezci M, Boscardin J, Joseph NM, Therrien N, Sangoi AR, Piening B, Rajamanickam V, Galvin M, Bernard B, Zaloudek C, Rabban JT, Garg K, Umetsu SE. Uterine Inflammatory Myofibroblastic Tumors: Proposed Risk Stratification Model Using Integrated Clinicopathologic and Molecular Analysis. Am J Surg Pathol. 2023 02 01; 47(2):157-171.  View on PubMed
  10. Zhang Y, Lucas CG, Young JS, Morshed RA, McCoy L, Oberheim Bush NA, Taylor JW, Daras M, Butowski NA, Villanueva-Meyer JE, Cha S, Wrensch M, Wiencke JK, Lee JC, Pekmezci M, Phillips JJ, Perry A, Bollen AW, Aghi MK, Theodosopoulos P, Chang EF, Hervey-Jumper SL, Berger MS, Clarke JL, Chang SM, Molinaro AM, Solomon DA. Prospective genomically guided identification of "early/evolving" and "undersampled" IDH-wildtype glioblastoma leads to improved clinical outcomes. Neuro Oncol. 2022 10 03; 24(10):1749-1762.  View on PubMed
  11. Lucas CG, Sloan EA, Gupta R, Wu J, Pratt D, Vasudevan HN, Ravindranathan A, Barreto J, Williams EA, Shai A, Whipple NS, Bruggers CS, Maher O, Nabors B, Rodriguez M, Samuel D, Brown M, Carmichael J, Lu R, Mirchia K, Sullivan DV, Pekmezci M, Tihan T, Bollen AW, Perry A, Banerjee A, Mueller S, Gupta N, Hervey-Jumper SL, Oberheim Bush NA, Daras M, Taylor JW, Butowski NA, de Groot J, Clarke JL, Raleigh DR, Costello JF, Phillips JJ, Reddy AT, Chang SM, Berger MS, Solomon DA. Multiplatform molecular analyses refine classification of gliomas arising in patients with neurofibromatosis type 1. Acta Neuropathol. 2022 Oct; 144(4):747-765.  View on PubMed
  12. Lucas CG, Davidson CJ, Alashari M, Putnam AR, Whipple NS, Bruggers CS, Mendez JS, Cheshier SH, Walker JB, Ramani B, Cadwell CR, Sullivan DV, Lu R, Mirchia K, Van Ziffle J, Devine P, Goldschmidt E, Hervey-Jumper SL, Gupta N, Oberheim Bush NA, Raleigh DR, Bollen A, Tihan T, Pekmezci M, Solomon DA, Phillips JJ, Perry A. Targeted Next-Generation Sequencing Reveals Divergent Clonal Evolution in Components of Composite Pleomorphic Xanthoastrocytoma-Ganglioglioma. J Neuropathol Exp Neurol. 2022 07 19; 81(8):650-657.  View on PubMed
  13. Solomon DA, Ramani B, Eiger-Moscovich M, Milman T, Uludag G, Crawford JB, Phan I, Char DH, Shields CL, Eagle RC, Bastian BC, Bloomer MM, Pekmezci M. Iris and Ciliary Body Melanocytomas Are Defined by Solitary GNAQ Mutation Without Additional Oncogenic Alterations. Ophthalmology. 2022 12; 129(12):1429-1439.  View on PubMed
  14. Vasudevan HN, Choudhury A, Hilz S, Villanueva-Meyer JE, Chen WC, Lucas CG, Braunstein SE, Oberheim Bush NA, Butowski N, Pekmezci M, McDermott MW, Perry A, Solomon DA, Magill ST, Raleigh DR. Intratumor and informatic heterogeneity influence meningioma molecular classification. Acta Neuropathol. 2022 09; 144(3):579-583.  View on PubMed
  15. Kaidonis G, Pekmezci M, Van Ziffle J, Auguste KI, Horton JC. TRAF7 somatic mosaicism in a patient with bilateral optic nerve sheath meningiomas: illustrative case. J Neurosurg Case Lessons. 2022 Jun 06; 3(23):CASE2247.  View on PubMed
  16. Güney E, Lucas CG, Qi Z, Yu J, Zhang R, Ohgami RS, Rubenstein JL, Boué DR, Schafernak K, Wertheim GB, Dahiya S, Giulino-Roth L, Attarbaschi A, Barth MJ, Kothari S, Abla O, Cohen AL, Mendez JS, Bollen A, Perry A, Tihan T, Pekmezci M, Solomon DA, Wen KW. A genetically distinct pediatric subtype of primary CNS large B-cell lymphoma is associated with favorable clinical outcome. Blood Adv. 2022 05 24; 6(10):3189-3193.  View on PubMed
  17. Stallworth JY, Smith LD, Vagefi MR, Pekmezci M. Plexiform Neurofibroma With Activating KRAS Mutation and Segmental Presentation Involving the Unilateral Eyelid. Ophthalmic Plast Reconstr Surg. 2022 Jul-Aug 01; 38(4):e104-e106.  View on PubMed
  18. Soylemezoglu F, Oz B, Egilmez R, Pekmezci M, Bozkurt S, Danyeli AE, Onguru O, Kulac I, Tihan T. Towards Development of a Standard Terminology of the World Health Organization Classification of Tumors of the Central Nervous System in the Turkish Language, and a Perspective on the Practical Implications of the WHO Classification for Low and Middle Income Countries. Turk Patoloji Derg. 2022; 38(3):185-204.  View on PubMed
  19. Sloan EA, Gupta R, Koelsche C, Chiang J, Villanueva-Meyer JE, Alexandrescu S, Eschbacher JM, Wang W, Mafra M, Ud Din N, Carr-Boyd E, Watson M, Punsoni M, Oviedo A, Gilani A, Kleinschmidt-DeMasters BK, Coss DJ, Lopes MB, Reddy A, Mueller S, Cho SJ, Horvai AE, Lee JC, Pekmezci M, Tihan T, Bollen AW, Rodriguez FJ, Ellison DW, Perry A, von Deimling A, Chang SM, Berger MS, Solomon DA. Intracranial mesenchymal tumors with FET-CREB fusion are composed of at least two epigenetic subgroups distinct from meningioma and extracranial sarcomas. Brain Pathol. 2022 07; 32(4):e13037.  View on PubMed
  20. Lu HC, Eulo V, Apicelli AJ, Pekmezci M, Tao Y, Luo J, Hirbe AC, Dahiya S. Correction: Aberrant ATRX protein expression is associated with poor overall survival in NF1-MPNST. Oncotarget. 2021 Nov 23; 12(24):2435-2436.  View on PubMed

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