Renowned blood-cancer specialist joins UAB

New director to help establish UAB as the South’s leading center for treating leukemia, lymphoma, multiple myeloma and related diseases.

Harry P. Erba, M.D., Ph.D., has joined the UAB Division of Hematology and Oncology as the new director of hematologic malignancies and a senior scientist in the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center experimental therapeutics program.


Erba is a highly respected leader in the field of hematologic malignancies — the types of cancer that affect blood, bone marrow, and lymph nodes — especially with respect to the assessment of novel therapies in acute myeloid and chronic myeloid leukemias and myelodysplastic syndromes.

“I am extremely pleased that our nationwide search allowed us to recruit Dr. Erba to the Division of Hematology and Oncology,” says Boris Pasche, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Division of Hematology and Oncology. “He is a prominent leader in field of leukemia, a distinguished educator and has been involved in the development and clinical trials of numerous new therapeutic agents. Dr. Erba and his team, in concert with bone-marrow and stem-cell transplantation headed by Dr. Shin Mineishi, will firmly establish UAB as the leading center in the South for the treatment of leukemia, lymphoma, multiple myeloma and related diseases.”

Erba has served on National Comprehensive Cancer Network Practice Guidelines committees for acute myeloid and chronic myeloid leukemias, myelodysplastic syndromes and myeloid growth factors and was appointed to the NCCN Board of Producers in 2007 and 2008. He also has been an executive officer of SWOG, a leading cancer research network, since 2006, working closely with the leadership of its leukemia, lymphoma, myeloma and bone-marrow-transplant committees; he will chair the leukemia committee beginning in October 2012.

Erba has led numerous clinical trials and played major roles in the development of several new drugs. His work has been published in high-impact journals such as Nature, Cell, the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Blood, Cancer Research and the British Journal of Hematology. In addition to 47 peer-reviewed publications, he has authored five book chapters and lectured extensively in the United States, Canada, Europe and Japan.

After attending Yale University, Erba received his medical and doctoral degrees from Stanford University and completed his internship and residency in internal medicine at the Brigham and Women's Hospital at Harvard Medical School. Following a fellowship in hematology/oncology at the same institution, he joined the Harvard Medical School faculty for three years until he moved to the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where he was an associate professor.

Erba was named University of Michigan Teacher of the Year in the Division of Hematology/Oncology for four consecutive years. In 2004, he was given the Outstanding Clinician Award by the dean of the University of Michigan Medical School and earlier this year was made an inaugural member of the League of Clinical Excellence at the University of Michigan.