David J. Leffell MD

David P. Smith Professor of Dermatology and Professor of Surgery (Otolaryngology and Plastic); Section Chief, Dermatologic Surgery and Cutaneous Oncology

Research Interests

Molecular biology of basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma; Wound healing; Skin cancer epidemiology


Research Summary

Dr. Leffell and colleagues discovered the skin cancer gene, PTCH, in 1996 and have directed subsequent research towards understanding how skin cancer is formed. Other research includes studies of the p53 gene in skin cancer, epidemiology of skin cancer, and innovative diagnostic devices.


Selected Publications

  • Asplund A, Gustafsson AC, Wikonkal NM, Sela A, Leffell DJ, Kidd K, Lundeberg J. Brash DE, Ponten F: PTCH codon 1315 polymorphism and risk for nonmelanoma skin cancer, British Journal of Medicine, 152(5):868-73, 2005
  • Carucci JA, Kolenik SA, Leffell DJ: Human cadaveric allograft for repair of nasal defects after extirpation of basal cell carcinoma by Mohs micrographic surgery, Dermatologic Surgery, 28(4):340-3, 2002
  • Olhoffer IH, Lazova R, Leffell DJ: Histopathologic misdiagnoses and their clinical consequences, Archives of Dermatology, 138(10):1381-3, 2002
  • Salovey P, Pronin E, Rothman AJ, Zullo J, Leffell DJ: Framing, involvement, and skin cancer Prevention and early detection, University published manuscript, Yale University, 2001
  • Hahn H, Wicking C, Zaphiropoulos P, Gailani M, Shanley S, Chidambaram A, Vorechovsky I, Holmberg E, Unden A, Gillies S, Negus K, Smyth I, Pressman C, Leffell DJ, Gerrard B, Goldstein A, Wainwright B, Toftgard R, Chenevix-Trench G, Dean M, Bale A: Mutations of the human homolog of drosophila patched in the nevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome, Cell, 85(6):841-51, 1996
  • Gailani M, Leffell DJ, Ziegler A, Gross E, Brash DE, Bale AE: Relationship between sunlight exposure and a key genetic alteration in basal cell carcinoma, Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 88(6): 349-54, 1996
  • Leffell DJ, Stetz ML, Milstone LM, Deckelbaum LI: In vivo laser fluorescence of human skin: a potential marker of photoaging, Archives of Dermatology, 124(10):1514 8, 1988
  • Leffell DJ, Headington JT, Wong DS, Swanson NA: Aggressive-growth basal cell carcinoma in young adults, Archives of Dermatology, 127(11):1663 7, 1991

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