Mona Sabra

  • I am a board-certified endocrinologist with a focus in thyroid cancer.  Since I was recruited to Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) in 2010, I have established a busy practice caring for patients with advanced thyroid cancer.  I also manage patients with immunotherapy-induced endocrinopathies, an increasingly common problem in the last two years, and participate in care of cancer patients on clinical trials who develop hyperglycemia induced by steroids and/or therapy.

    I am integrally involved in teaching at multiple levels.  I teach medical students in several settings, including first year Weill Cornell Medical College (WCMC) medical students in the Problem-Based Learning (PBL) curriculum; second-year medical students in the Pathophysiology Course (Basis of Disease); and WCMC and visiting medical students on the inpatient service.   I give didactic sessions to residents and fellows during MSK Endocrine Grand Rounds, and I train endocrine fellows when I serve as the Endocrinology Service Attending and thyroid cancer international fellows in the outpatient setting.

    On national level, I serve as committee member for the American Thyroid Association Patient Education and Advocacy committee between 2008 and 2014, committee member for the ATA Clinical Affairs committee between 2011 and 2014, Chair of the Clinical Affairs committee between 2014 and 2016 and currently serve as past Chair for the ATA Clinical Affairs committee. I remain an active member of American Thyroid Association and the Endocrine Society.

    ?I am actively involved in clinical research relating to distant metastatic thyroid cancer.  For many years, repeat radioactive iodine therapy has been the mainstay treatment for recurrent metastatic or progressive thyroid cancer. We found that in the absence of demonstrable radioactive iodine (RAI) uptake in tumor foci on diagnostic whole body scans, therapeutic administration of iodine-131 is not beneficial. This has had a significant impact on clinical practice, as empiric administration of large doses of iodine-131 was commonly given to patients despite lack of evidence for efficacy. We also found that response to RAI depends on tumor genotype, with RAS mutated tumors more likely to respond to RAI than BRAF V600E mutated tumors.   These results served as one of the catalysts for the redifferentiation trials clinical trials offered to thyroid cancer patients, including the ASTRA trial for adjuvant therapy of high risk thyroid cancer patients, as well as the vemurafenib and trametinib redifferentiation trial for RAI refractory progressive metastatic thyroid cancer. I serve a co-investigator on these trials.

    With the advent of molecular targeted therapy for the management of RAI refractory, progressive metastatic thyroid cancer, it became important to define the time course and risk factors for structural disease progression in these patients. As metastatic disease can undergo insidious progression in some patients, defining the optimal time to start these therapies by considering the rate of disease progression is essential. I recently studied the association between thyroglobulin doubling time and structural disease doubling time with overall survival. This should allow us to better define the appropriate time to initiate systemic therapies.
    Over the coming years, further studies will focus on the relationship between thyroid cancer genotype, phenotype, and response to specific therapies.


Leave a Reply

  • Upcoming Events


    World Congress on Thyroid Cancer 3.5
    June 20 – 22, 2019
    Rome, Italy

    World Congress on Thyroid Cancer 4.0
    July 29 – August 1, 2021
    Boston, Massachusetts


  • WCTC3.5 Steering Committee:


    Rocco Bellatone, Co-Chair
    Celestino Lombardi, Co-Chair
    Gregory W. Randolph, MD
    Bryan McIver, MD
    Jeremy Freeman, MD
    Ian J. Witterick, MD
    Ashok R. Shaha, MD
    Jatin P. Shah, MD