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Sanford A. Stass, MD

Chair, Department Of Pathology; Chair, Department of Medical and Research Technology

Academic Title:

Professor

Primary Appointment:

Pathology

Secondary Appointment(s):

Medicine, Medical and Research Technology

Administrative Title:

Chair, Department Of Pathology; Chair, Department Of Medical & Research Technology

Location:

10 South Pine Street, Room 730

Phone (Primary):

410-706-7070

Phone (Secondary):

410-328-1237

Fax:

410-328-1813

Education and Training

  • University of California at Los Angeles, BA, 1965
  • University of Missouri, MD, 1971
  • Residency, National Regional Medical Center, Pathology, 1975 
  • Residency, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Pathology, 1976  

Biosketch

Dr. Stass is chair of the Department of Pathology and chair of the Department of Medical and Research Technology, Maryland’s largest medical laboratory science (medical technology) program, offering both undergraduate and graduate degrees, and opportunities for professional certification.

He is also Medical Director of the UMMC Laboratories of Pathology (CLIA/CAP/AABB/ASHI accredited), which provide a full range of contemporary laboratory testing services for inpatients and outpatients throughout UMMC and the University of Maryland Rehabilitation and Orthopaedic Institute. The Laboratories of Pathology also provide extensive reference laboratory and specialty testing support for clinical trials, other regional hospitals, and non-hospital based health care organizations.

Dr. Stass is recognized internationally for his research in the molecular biology of hematopoietic neoplasia and biomarkers of cancer, e.g. lung cancer. He has extensive experience in biomarker development and validation as principal investigator since 2005 on a National Institutes of Health/National Cancer Institute-funded grant entitled, University of Maryland Baltimore Biomarker Research Laboratory. Dr. Stass is widely known for his major contributions in the molecular biology and immunologic characterizations of leukemias and lymphomas, including identification and clinical application of novel biomarkers for diagnosis, prognosis, and therapeutic monitoring. He is working toward the development and testing of promising new lung cancer biomarkers that use innovative technologies with application in an accredited diagnostic laboratory environment. A distinguished academic, Dr. Stass has published over 220 peer-reviewed articles.  

Research/Clinical Keywords

Hematopathology, Molecular Genetics, Molecular Hematology, Molecular Diagnostics, Leukemia, Lymphoma, Hematologic Malignancies, Lung Cancer, Biomarkers

Highlighted Publications

Jiang F, Todd NW, Qiu Q, Liu Z, Katz RL, Stass SA. Combined genetic analysis of sputum and computed tomography for noninvasive diagnosis of non-small-cell lung cancer. Lung Cancer. 2009 Oct;66(1):58-63. Epub 2009 Jan. 31.

Jiang F, Todd NW, Li R, Zhang H, Fang H, Stass SA. A panel of sputum-based genomic markers for early detection of lung cancer. Cancer Prev Res (Phila). 2010 Dec. 3(12):Epub 2010 Sep 23.

Gao L, Ma J, Mannoor K, Guarnera MA, Shetty A, Zhan M, Xing L, Stass SA, Jiang F. Genome-wide small nucleolar RNA expression analysis of lung cancer by next-generation deep sequencing. Int J Cancer. 2014 Aug 27.

Xing L, Su J, Guarnera M, Zhang H, Cai L, Zhou R, Stass SA, Jiang F. Sputum microRNA Biomarkers for Identifying Lung Cancer in Indeterminate Solitary Pulmonary Nodules. Clin Cancer Res January 15, 2015. 21:484-489; doi:10.1158/1078-0432. CCR-14-1873.

Ma J, Lin Y, Zhan M, Mann D, Stass SA, Jiang F. Differential miRNA expressions in peripheral blood mononuclear cells for diagnosis of lung cancer. Laboratory Investigation, 2015 Oct; 95(10):1197-1206. Doi: 10.1038/labinvest.2015.88. Epub 2015 Jul 6.

Su J, Liao J, Gao L, Shen J, Guarnera MA, Zhan M, Fang H, Stass SA, Jiang F.  Analysis of small nucleolar RNAs in sputum for lung cancer diagnosis. Oncotarget. 2016 Feb 2;7(5):5131-42. Doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.4219.

Additional Publication Citations

Chen, Q.R., Zhang, L., Stass, S.A., & Mixson, A.J. Co-polymer of histidine and lysine markedly enhances transfection of liposomes. Gene Ther. 7: 1698-1705, 2000.

Chen, Q.R., Zhang, L., Stass, S.A., & Mixson, A.J. Branched co-polymers of histidine and lysine are efficient carriers of plasmids. Nucleic Acids Res. Mar 15; 29(6):1334-40, 2001.

Zhang, L., Gasper, W.J., Stass, S.A., Ioffe, O.B., Davis, M.A., & Mixson, A.J. Angiogenic inhibition mediated by a DNAzyme that targets vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2. Cancer Res (Oct 1); 62(19): 5463-9, 2002.

Selaru, F.M., Yin, J., Olaru, A., Mori, Y., Xu, Y., Epstein, S.H., Sato, F., Deacu, E., Wang, S., Sterian, A., Fulton, A., Abraham, J.M., Shibata, D., Baquet, C., Stass, S.A., & Meltzer, S.J. An unsupervised approach to identify molecular phenotypic components influencing breast cancer features. Cancer Res, 64:1584-1588, 2004.

Sato, F., Shimada, Y., Selaru, F., Shibata, D., Maeda, M., Watanabe, G., Mori, Y., Stass, S., Imamura, M., & Meltzer, S.: Prediction of survival in patients with esophageal carcinoma using artificial neural networks. Cancer; Apr; 1596-1605, 2005.

Li, R., Wang, H., Yin, Z., Caraway, N.P., Katz, R.L., Stass, S.A., & Jiang, F. Identification of putative oncogenes in lung adenocarcinoma by a comprehensive functional genomic approach. Oncogene, 25(18):2628-35, 2006. 

Research Interests

A major area of Dr. Stass' research investigation involves the molecular biology/genetic changes in cancer, hematopoietic neoplasia, and biomarkers in cancer. His basic research program has provided the basis for translational research, i.e., transfer of research into the clinic.

Dr. Stass is recognized nationally and internationally for his research in the molecular biology of hematopoietic neoplasia. He has published over 220 peer-reviewed articles. He is recognized for major contributions in the molecular biology and immunologic characterizations of leukemias and lymphomas, including identification and clinical application of novel biomarkers for diagnosis, prognosis, and therapeutic monitoring. He was the first to describe the t(1;19)(q23;p13) abnormality in pre-B ALL (Cell) and the first to amplify a chromosomal translocation (t14;18)(132;q21) as a biomarker to detect minimal residual disease in lymphoma (Science) and one of the first to amplify the bcr-abl transcript as a marker to detect minimal residual disease in chronic myeloid leukemia (Blood). Dr. Stass was also among the first to delineate the heterogeneity of acute leukemias (acute mixed lineage and lineage switch leukemia) important in defining markers of lineage commitment for appropriate therapy.

Dr. Stass has extensive experience in biomarker development and validation and, as PI on an NIH/NCI funded grant (University of Maryland Baltimore Biomarker Research Laboratory), he is working toward the development and testing of promising new cancer biomarkers using innovative technologies with application in a certified diagnostic laboratory environment. 

Awards and Affiliations

  • Director and Founder, Molecular Diagnostics Associates, Molecular Oncology Testing, 1987-1992
  • Founding Member and Vice Chair, Molecular Pathology Resource Committee, College of American Pathologists, 1989-1995
  • Chair, Molecular Pathology Resource Committee, College of American Pathologists, 1995-1999
  • Scientific Advisory Board, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology Department of Defense, 1997-1999
  • Chair, Post Mortem Examiners Commission, State of Maryland, 1998-Present
  • Chair, NIH/NCI/EDRN Collaboration and Publication Subcommittee, 2007-2010
  • Co-Chair, NIH/NCI/EDRN Communication and Workshop Subcommittee, 2010-2015
  • Founder and Editor-in-Chief, Hematopathology and olecular Hematology, 1985-2001
  • Co-Editor, Hematology Series, Marcel Dekker Inc., 1987-2001
  • Editorial Board, Molecular Pathology, 1991-2000
  • Founder and Editor, Diagnostic Pathology Series, Marcel Dekker Inc., 1995-2001
  • Editorial Board, Cancer Biomarkers, 2008-Present

Previous Positions

  • Associate Professor, Department of Pathology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1979-81
  • Associate Professor, Department of Pathology, University of Tennessee College of Medicine, 1981-84
  • Associate Member, Department of Pathology, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 1981-1984
  • Pathologist and Professor of Laboratory Medicine, Division of Laboratory Medicine; Professor of Pathology, Division of Pathology, University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, 1984-1994