In This Section
Michael B. Sporn, MD

Michael B. Sporn, MD

deceased (1933-2022)

Class of 2013

Dr. Sporn’s principal research efforts over his entire career have been devoted to prevention of cancer. He has been a pioneer in the field of chemoprevention. His major contributions have included: the exposition and validation of the autocrine hypothesis of the genesis and progression of tumors; the discovery, purification, and elucidation of the biology of the transforming growth factor-beta family; and the provision of both a conceptual and experimental framework for understanding the antineoplastic actions of retinoids, rexinoids, and synthetic triterpenoids.

The fields profoundly influenced by Dr. Sporn’s contributions include not only cancer biology, but also immunology, inflammation, oxidative stress, wound healing, and embryonic development. Current research in his laboratory is devoted to chemoprevention of lung, breast, and pancreatic cancer, using animal models of very aggressive disease. The goal of these studies is to develop new and safe drugs for prevention of clinical disease in people at especially high risk; chemoprevention using combinations of drugs is receiving special attention.

Career Highlights

2012-present Project Director, National Foundation for Cancer Research
2005 Brinker Award, Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation
2004 National Cancer Institute Eminent Scholar
2002 AACR-Cancer Research Foundation of America Award for Excellence in Cancer Prevention Research
1998 Bristol-Myers Squibb Award for Distinguished Achievement in Cancer Research
1998 Elected Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science
1995-2005 Editor-in-Chief, Cytokine and Growth Factor Reviews
1994 Medal of Honor, American Cancer Society
1994 Mider Lecture Award, National Institutes of Health
1993-1995 Board of Directors, AACR
1991 AACR-Bruce F. Cain Memorial Award
1982 Lila Gruber Award for Cancer Research, American Academy of Dermatology
1978-1995 Chief, Laboratory of Chemoprevention, National Cancer Institute
1973-1978 Chief, Lung Cancer Branch, National Cancer Institute
1959 MD, University of Rochester