Dr Laura Esserman
Laura Esserman, MD, MBA is nationally recognized as one of America’s leading experts in breast cancer research and treatment. Her work in breast cancer spans the spectrum from basic science to public policy issues and the impact of both on the delivery of clinical care. Dr. Esserman is a Professor of Surgery and Radiology at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and the Director of the UCSF Carol Franc Buck Breast Care Center. She is a leader of the innovative I-SPY TRIAL model, designed to accelerate the identification and approval of effective new agents for women with high risk breast cancers. The goal of the I-SPY TRIAL model is to shave several years and tens of millions of dollars off the drug development process. The trial paradigm is now being developed for use in other disease domains. In 2009, Dr. Esserman led the creation of the University of California-wide Athena Breast Health Network, a learning system designed to integrate clinical care and research as it follows 150,000 women from screening through treatment and outcomes. As part of the network, she has spearheaded the development of the WISDOM study to learn how to improve breast cancer screening by testing and comparing the safety and efficacy of a personalized screening strategy informed by each woman’s breast cancer risk and preferences against the standard of annual screening. Dr. Esserman is nationally and internationally known as a thought leader on the topics of over-diagnosis and over-treatment, calling attention to, as well as developing solutions to address these problems. She has published over 200 articles in peer-reviewed journals, and has been interviewed by prestigious scientific, business, and consumer media including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Health Magazine, Prevention Magazine, Time Magazine, The Newshour with Jim Lehrer, the NBC Nightly News, the Dr. Oz Show, and NPR’s Science Friday and All Things Considered. Dr. Esserman is a passionate and persistent advocate for her patients. She is keenly aware that many of her patients don’t have 10 years to wait for the right treatment options. Her work is dedicated to accelerating the development of targeted, effective prevention and treatment options that can make a difference at the time when they are needed the most.