Department of Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology



  Melinda E. Sanders, M.D.s



  Associate Professor

  Dept of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

  Contact Information


  Office Location:  

  4918A TVC

   Phone:  615-322-1410  

E-mail: melinda.sanders@vanderbilt.edu 

Breast Consultative Services:  www.breastconsults.com


 Campus Mail address:

 Pathology Labs/Blood Bank

 4605 TVC (5310)


 US Mailing address:

 Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

 Pathology Labs/Blood Bank

 4605 TVC

 Nashville, TN 37232-5310







M.D., Jefferson Medical College
B.S., Duke Univ



Research Keywords



Breast Cander, Proteomics, Genomics, Polymorphisms, Histopathology



Research Description



My research endeavors include studies of proliferative breast disease and breast cancer. I am engaged in both discovery projects and investigation of specific genetic alterations. My work is principally funded by a Vanderbilt Physician Scientist Development Award and the Breast Cancer S.P.O.R.E. through which I have received a Career Development Award. My main effort is characterization of the molecular changes accompanying the pre-invasive to invasive breast cancer transition. This is an important focus for breast cancer research because extensive epidemiologic data have shown the most critical event in mammary neoplasia to be the transition from ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) to invasive mammary carcinoma (IMC). Approximately one third of women diagnosed with IMC in 2003 will subsequently develop metastatic disease and die as a result. In contrast, DCIS is a non-invasive process which by definition has no metastatic capacity with survival rates comparable to those of women in the general population. Differences in gene and protein expression should be responsible for these strikingly different clinical phenotypes and are under investigation using cDNA microarrays and matrix-assisted laser desorption-ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). The goal of these projects is to determine the expression differences which are predictive of biologic behavior both between and within these groups. These are discovery projects which will result in identification of genes and/or proteins associated with breast cancer invasion. The causal and mechanistic association of these genes and/or proteins with breast cancer invasiveness will be subsequently studied in appropriate cell and mouse models. Furthermore, epidemiologic validation linking invasion-associated genes and proteins with clinical outcome can be explored in databases with appropriate clinical follow-up such as the Nashville Breast Cohort. Additional projects include 1) The relationship of the transforming growth factor-?O1 T29C polymorphism to breast cancer risk, 2) Interdependence of radial scar and proliferative disease with respect to invasive breast cancer risk in benign breast biopsies, and 3) p27 haploinsufficiency in invasive breast cancer.






Dupont, WD, Breyer, JP, Bradley, KM, Schuyler, PA, Plummer, WD, Sanders, ME, Page, DL, Smith, JR. Protein phosphatase 2A subunit gene haplotypes and proliferative breast disease modify breast cancer risk. Cancer, 116(1), 8-19, 2010

Oppenheimer, SR, Mi, D, Sanders, ME, Caprioli, RM. Molecular Analysis of Tumor Margins by MALDI Mass Spectrometry in Renal Carcinoma. J Proteome Res, 2010

Bauer, JA, Chakravarthy, AB, Rosenbluth, JM, Mi, D, Seeley, EH, De Matos Granja-Ingram, N, Olivares, MG, Kelley, MC, Mayer, IA, Meszoely, IM, Means-Powell, JA, Johnson, KN, Tsai, CJ, Ayers, GD, Sanders, ME, Schneider, RJ, Formenti, SC, Caprioli, RM, Pietenpol, JA. Identification of markers of taxane sensitivity using proteomic and genomic analyses of breast tumors from patients receiving neoadjuvant paclitaxel and radiation. Clin Cancer Res, 16(2), 681-90, 2010

Breyer, JP, Sanders, ME, Airey, DC, Cai, Q, Yaspan, BL, Schuyler, PA, Dai, Q, Boulos, F, Olivares, MG, Bradley, KM, Gao, YT, Page, DL, Dupont, WD, Zheng, W, Smith, JR. Heritable variation of ERBB2 and breast cancer risk. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev, 18(4), 1252-8, 2009

Boulos, FI, Dupont, WD, Simpson, JF, Schuyler, PA, Sanders, ME, Freudenthal, ME, Page, DL. Histologic associations and long-term cancer risk in columnar cell lesions of the breast: a retrospective cohort and a nested case-control study. Cancer, 113(9), 2415-21, 2008

Sanders, ME, Dias, EC, Xu, BJ, Mobley, JA, Billheimer, D, Roder, H, Grigorieva, J, Dowsett, M, Arteaga, CL, Caprioli, RM. Differentiating proteomic biomarkers in breast cancer by laser capture microdissection and MALDI MS. J Proteome Res, 7(4), 1500-7, 2008

Guix, M, Granja, Nde M, Meszoely, I, Adkins, TB, Wieman, BM, Frierson, KE, Sanchez, V, Sanders, ME, Grau, AM, Mayer, IA, Pestano, G, Shyr, Y, Muthuswamy, S, Calvo, B, Krontiras, H, Krop, IE, Kelley, MC, Arteaga, CL. Short preoperative treatment with erlotinib inhibits tumor cell proliferation in hormone receptor-positive breast cancers. J Clin Oncol, 26(6), 897-906, 2008

Cornett, DS, Mobley, JA, Dias, EC, Andersson, M, Arteaga, CL, Sanders, ME, Caprioli, RM. A novel histology-directed strategy for MALDI-MS tissue profiling that improves throughput and cellular specificity in human breast cancer. Mol Cell Proteomics, 5(10), 1975-83, 2006

Sanders, ME, Page, DL, Simpson, JF, Schuyler, PA, Dale Plummer, W, Dupont, WD. Interdependence of radial scar and proliferative disease with respect to invasive breast carcinoma risk in patients with benign breast biopsies. Cancer, 106(7), 1453-61, 2006

Wu, FY, Wang, SE, Sanders, ME, Shin, I, Rojo, F, Baselga, J, Arteaga, CL. Reduction of cytosolic p27(Kip1) inhibits cancer cell motility, survival, and tumorigenicity. Cancer Res, 66(4), 2162-72, 2006

McLaren, BK, Schuyler, PA, Sanders, ME, Jensen, RA, Simpson, JF, Dupont, WD, Page, DL. Excellent survival, cancer type, and Nottingham grade after atypical lobular hyperplasia on initial breast biopsy. Cancer, 107(6), 1227-33, 2006

Sanders, ME, Schuyler, PA, Dupont, WD, Page, DL. The natural history of low-grade ductal carcinoma in situ of the breast in women treated by biopsy only revealed over 30 years of long-term follow-up. Cancer, 103(12), 2481-4, 2005

Chaurand, P, Sanders, ME, Jensen, RA, Caprioli, RM. Proteomics in diagnostic pathology: profiling and imaging proteins directly in tissue sections. Am J Pathol, 165(4), 1057-68, 2004

Muraoka, RS, Koh, Y, Roebuck, LR, Sanders, ME, Brantley-Sieders, D, Gorska, AE, Moses, HL, Arteaga, CL. Increased malignancy of Neu-induced mammary tumors overexpressing active transforming growth factor beta1. Mol Cell Biol, 23(23), 8691-703, 2003

Reid, Gregor, Sanders, M E, Gaskins, H Rex, Gibson, Glenn R, Mercenier, Annick, Rastall, Robert, Roberfroid, Marcel, Rowland, Ian, Cherbut, Christine, Klaenhammer, Todd R, . New scientific paradigms for probiotics and prebiotics.. J Clin Gastroenterol, 37, 105-18, 2003

Sanders, Melinda E, Mick, Rosemarie, Tomaszewski, John E, Barr, Frederic G, . Unique patterns of allelic imbalance distinguish type 1 from type 2 sporadic papillary renal cell carcinoma.. Am J Pathol, 161, 997-1005, 2002

Xu, Baogang J, Caprioli, Richard M, Sanders, Melinda E, Jensen, Roy A, . Direct analysis of laser capture microdissected cells by MALDI mass spectrometry.. J Am Soc Mass Spectrom, 13, 1292-7, 2002

Yeung, P S M, Sanders, M E, Kitts, C L, Cano, R, Tong, P S, . Species-specific identification of commercial probiotic strains.. J Dairy Sci, 85, 1039-51, 2002

Seibold, J R, Korn, J H, Simms, R, Clements, P J, Moreland, L W, Mayes, M D, Furst, D E, Rothfield, N, Steen, V, Weisman, M, Collier, D, Wigley, F M, Merkel, P A, Csuka, M E, Hsu, V, Rocco, S, Erikson, M, Hannigan, J, Harkonen, W S, Sanders, M E, . Recombinant human relaxin in the treatment of scleroderma. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.. Ann Intern Med, 132, 871-9, 2000

Fogt, F, Urbanski, S J, Sanders, M E, Furth, E E, Zimmerman, R L, Deren, J J, Noffsinger, A E, Vortmeyer, A O, Hartmann, C J, Odze, R L, Brown, C A, . Distinction between dysplasia-associated lesion or mass (DALM) and adenoma in patients with ulcerative colitis.. Hum Pathol, 31, 288-91, 2000

Sanders, M E, van de Rijn, M, Barr, F G, . Detection of a variant SYT-SSX1 fusion in a case of predominantly epithelioid synovial sarcoma.. Mol Diagn, 4, 65-70, 1999

Chin, J E, Winterrowd, G E, Krzesicki, R F, Sanders, M E, . Role of cytokines in inflammatory synovitis. The coordinate regulation of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 and HLA class I and class II antigens in rheumatoid synovial fibroblasts.. Arthritis Rheum, 33, 1776-86, 1990

Kursunoglu-Brahme, S, Riccio, T, Weisman, M H, Resnick, D, Zvaifler, N, Sanders, M E, Fix, C, . Rheumatoid knee: role of gadopentetate-enhanced MR imaging.. Radiology, 176, 831-5, 1990

Basinger, M A, Jones, M M, Craft, W D, Walker, E M, Sanders, M M, . Chelating-agent suppression of cadmium-induced hepatotoxicity.. J Toxicol Environ Health, 22, 261-71, 1987