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.
Key areas of research include isolation of lung cancer stems cells, the Wnt pathway in lung cancer and mesothelioma, inflammation in carcinogenesis, and the underlying molecular biology of thoracic malignancies. The Thoracic Oncology Lab focuses on drug target discovery, commercialization of novel therapeutics and development of genomic assays based on predictive and prognostic biomarkers.