John B. Sunwoo

Head and neck surgical oncologist, Head and neck surgeon, Cutaneous oncology specialist, Dermato-oncology specialist, Thyroid and parathyroid surgeon, Surgical oncologist

Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery

Head and Neck Cancer Program

  • 900 Blake Wilbur Drive
  • Palo Alto, CA 94304
  • Phone: 650-498-6000
Learn More About the Clinic Getting Here Make An Appointment

Skin Cancer Program

  • 900 Blake Wilbur Drive
  • Palo Alto, CA 94304
  • Phone: 650-498-6000
Learn More About the Clinic Getting Here Make An Appointment

Professional Education

Residency: Washington University School Of Medicine (2003) MO

Medical Education: Washington University School Of Medicine (1993) MO

Board Certification: Otolaryngology, American Board of Otolaryngology (2004)

Fellowship: National Institutes of Health (2000) MD

Internship: UC Davis Health System (1994) CA

M.D., Washington University, Medicine (1993)

Sc.B., Brown University, Biochemistry (1989)

Honors & Awards

Best Doctors in America, Best Doctors, Inc. (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014)

Top Doctors, Castle Connolly (2013, 2014)

Faculty Teacher of the Year, Dept. of Otolaryngology, Stanford University (2012)

K08 Award, National Institutes of Health (2004)

Chief Resident Teaching Award, Washington University (2003)

Alpha Omega Alpha, Washington University (2003)

Young Investigator Award, American Head and Neck Society (2000)

Resident Research Award, Washington University (1997, 1999, 2000)

Louis and Dorothy Kovitz Prize in Surgery, Washington University (1993)

Sigma Xi, Brown University (1989)

Administrative Appointments

Director of Head and Neck Cancer Research, Stanford University School of Medicine, Dept. of Otolaryngology (2013 - Present)

Co-Director, Thyroid and Parathyroid Tumor Board, Stanford University School of Medicine (2011 - Present)

Member, Pigmented Lesion and Melanoma Program, Stanford University School of Medicine (2011 - Present)

Member, Metastatic and Recurrent Head and Neck Disease Task Force, Head and Neck Steering Committee of the National Cancer Institute, NIH (2011 - Present)

Member, Research Committee, American Head and Neck Society (2010 - 2013)

Member, CORE Grants Study Section, American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery (2009 - Present)

Member, Tumor Biology & Imaging Task Force, Head and Neck Steering Committee of the National Cancer Institute, NIH (2010 - 2011)

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies that evaluate a new medical approach, device, drug, or other treatment. As a Stanford Health Care patient, you may have access to the latest, advanced clinical trials.

Open trials refer to studies currently accepting participants. Closed trials are not currently enrolling, but may open in the future.

Targeting CD137 enhances the efficacy of cetuximab.
Kohrt, H. E., Colevas, A. D., Houot, R., Weiskopf, K., Goldstein, M. J., & Levy, R. (2014). Targeting CD137 enhances the efficacy of cetuximab. journal of clinical investigation, 124(6), 2668-2682.

Epstein-Barr Virus Nuclear Antigen 1 (EBNA1) Protein Induction of Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition in Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma Cells
Wang, L., Tian, W.-D., Xu, X., Nie, B., Lu, J., & Li, X.-P. (2014). Epstein-Barr Virus Nuclear Antigen 1 (EBNA1) Protein Induction of Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition in Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma Cells. CANCER, 120(3), 363-372.

CD271 is a functional and targetable marker of tumor-initiating cells in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.
Murillo-Sauca, O., Chung, M. K., Shin, J. H., Karamboulas, C., Kwok, S., & Sunwoo, J. B. (2014). CD271 is a functional and targetable marker of tumor-initiating cells in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. Oncotarget.

Cancer Immunosurveillance and Immunoediting by Natural Killer Cells
Gross, E., Sunwoo, J. B., & Bui, J. D. (2013). Cancer Immunosurveillance and Immunoediting by Natural Killer Cells. CANCER JOURNAL, 19(6), 483-489.

Modulation of natural killer cell antitumor activity by the aryl hydrocarbon receptor
Shin, J. H., Zhang, L., Murillo-Sauca, O., Kim, J., Kohrt, H. Ek., & Sunwoo, J. B. (2013). Modulation of natural killer cell antitumor activity by the aryl hydrocarbon receptor. PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 110(30), 12391-12396.

Impact of positron emission tomography/computed tomography surveillance at 12 and 24 months for detecting head and neck cancer recurrence
Ho, A. S., Tsao, G. J., Chen, F. W., Shen, T., Kaplan, M. J., & Yao, M. (2013). Impact of positron emission tomography/computed tomography surveillance at 12 and 24 months for detecting head and neck cancer recurrence. CANCER, 119(7), 1349-1356.

Epigenetically mediated pathogenic effects of phenanthrene on regulatory T cells.
Liu, J., Zhang, L., Winterroth, L. C., Garcia, M., Weiman, S., & Nadeau, K. C. (2013). Epigenetically mediated pathogenic effects of phenanthrene on regulatory T cells. Journal of toxicology, 2013, 967029-?.

Identification of human NK cells that are deficient for signaling adaptor FcR gamma and specialized for antibody-dependent immune functions
Hwang, I., Zhang, T., Scott, J. M., Kim, A. R., Lee, T., & Kim, S. (2012). Identification of human NK cells that are deficient for signaling adaptor FcR gamma and specialized for antibody-dependent immune functions. INTERNATIONAL IMMUNOLOGY, 24(12), 793-802.

CD44+cells have cancer stem cell-like properties in nasopharyngeal carcinoma
Janisiewicz, A. M., Shin, J. H., Murillo-Sauca, O., Kwok, S., Quynh-Thu Le, Q. T., & Sunwoo, J. B. (2012). CD44+cells have cancer stem cell-like properties in nasopharyngeal carcinoma. INTERNATIONAL FORUM OF ALLERGY & RHINOLOGY, 2(6), 465-470.

The manipulation of natural killer cells to target tumor sites using magnetic nanoparticles
Jang, E.-S., Shin, J.-H., Ren, G., Park, M.-J., Cheng, K., & Cheng, Z. (2012). The manipulation of natural killer cells to target tumor sites using magnetic nanoparticles. BIOMATERIALS, 33(22), 5584-5592.

Effect of stimulation of natural killer cells with an anti-CD137 mAb on the efficacy of trastuzumab, cetuximab, and rituximab
Kohrt, H. E., Houot, R., Weiskopf, K., Goldstein, M., Lund, P., & Levy, R. (2012). Effect of stimulation of natural killer cells with an anti-CD137 mAb on the efficacy of trastuzumab, cetuximab, and rituximab. JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ONCOLOGY, 30(15).

The CD47-signal regulatory protein alpha (SIRPa) interaction is a therapeutic target for human solid tumors
Willingham, S. B., Volkmer, J.-P., Gentles, A. J., Sahoo, D., Dalerba, P., & Weissman, I. L. (2012). The CD47-signal regulatory protein alpha (SIRPa) interaction is a therapeutic target for human solid tumors. PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 109(17), 6662-6667.

Targeted endoscopic salvage nasopharyngectomy for recurrent nasopharyngeal carcinoma
Ho, A. S., Kaplan, M. J., Fee, W. E., Yao, M., Sunwoo, J. B., & Hwang, P. H. (2012). Targeted endoscopic salvage nasopharyngectomy for recurrent nasopharyngeal carcinoma. INTERNATIONAL FORUM OF ALLERGY & RHINOLOGY, 2(2), 166-173.

ERK1/2 Regulation of CD44 Modulates Oral Cancer Aggressiveness
Judd, N. P., Winkler, A. E., Murillo-Sauca, O., Brotman, J. J., Law, J. H., & Uppaluri, R. (2012). ERK1/2 Regulation of CD44 Modulates Oral Cancer Aggressiveness. CANCER RESEARCH, 72(1), 365-374.

A cisplatin-resistant subpopulation of mesenchymal-like cells in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma
Sunwoo, J. B. (2011). A cisplatin-resistant subpopulation of mesenchymal-like cells in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. CELL CYCLE, 10(17), 2834-2835.

Distal-less homeobox transcription factors regulate development and maturation of natural killer cells
Sunwoo, J. B., Kim, S., Yang, L., Naik, T., Higuchi, D. A., & Yokoyama, W. M. (2008). Distal-less homeobox transcription factors regulate development and maturation of natural killer cells. PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 105(31), 10877-10882.

Temporal Relationship Between Antitumor Necrosis Factor-alpha Antibody Therapy and Recrudescence of Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma
Engel, S. H., Hullar, T. E., Adkins, D. R., Thorstad, W. L., & Sunwoo, J. B. (2008). Temporal Relationship Between Antitumor Necrosis Factor-alpha Antibody Therapy and Recrudescence of Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma. LARYNGOSCOPE, 118(3), 450-452.

HLA alleles determine differences in human natural killer cell responsiveness and potency
Kim, S., Sunwoo, J. B., Yang, L., Choi, T., Song, Y.-J., & Yokoyama, W. M. (2008). HLA alleles determine differences in human natural killer cell responsiveness and potency. PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 105(8), 3053-3058.

Spontaneous regression of cutaneous head and neck melanoma: Implications for the immunologic control of neoplasia
Dunn, G. P., Lewis, J. S., Sunwoo, J. B., & Uppaluri, R. (2008). Spontaneous regression of cutaneous head and neck melanoma: Implications for the immunologic control of neoplasia. HEAD AND NECK-JOURNAL FOR THE SCIENCES AND SPECIALTIES OF THE HEAD AND NECK, 30(2), 267-272.

Mycotic pseudoaneurysm of the internal maxillary artery - Case report and review of the literature
Dunn, G. P., Uppaluri, R., Hessler, J. L., Layland, M. K., Derdeyn, C. P., & Sunwoo, J. B. (2007). Mycotic pseudoaneurysm of the internal maxillary artery - Case report and review of the literature. ARCHIVES OF OTOLARYNGOLOGY-HEAD & NECK SURGERY, 133(4), 402-406.

Arrested natural killer cell development associated with transgene insertion into the Atf2 locus
Kim, S., Song, Y. J., Higuchi, D. A., Kang, H. P., Pratt, J. R., & Yokoyama, W. M. (2006). Arrested natural killer cell development associated with transgene insertion into the Atf2 locus. BLOOD, 107(3), 1024-1030.

Inhibition of nuclear factor-kappa B and target genes during combined therapy with proteasome inhibitor bortezomib and reirradiation in patients with recurrent head-and-neck squamous cell carcinoma
Van Waes, C., Chang, A. A., Lebowitz, P. F., Druzgal, C. H., Chen, Z., & Conley, B. A. (2005). Inhibition of nuclear factor-kappa B and target genes during combined therapy with proteasome inhibitor bortezomib and reirradiation in patients with recurrent head-and-neck squamous cell carcinoma. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF RADIATION ONCOLOGY BIOLOGY PHYSICS, 63(5), 1400-1412.

Licensing of natural killer cells by host major histocompatibility complex class I molecules
Kim, S., Poursine-Laurent, J., Truscott, S. M., Lybarger, L., Song, Y. J., & Yokoyama, W. M. (2005). Licensing of natural killer cells by host major histocompatibility complex class I molecules. NATURE, 436(7051), 709-713.

Nuclear factor-kappa B is an important modulator of the altered gene expression profile and malignant phenotype in squamous cell carcinoma
Loercher, A., Lee, T. L., Ricker, J. L., Howard, A., Geoghegen, J., & Van Waes, C. (2004). Nuclear factor-kappa B is an important modulator of the altered gene expression profile and malignant phenotype in squamous cell carcinoma. CANCER RESEARCH, 64(18), 6511-6523.

Effects of pharmacologic antagonists of epidermal growth factor receptor, PI3K and MEK signal kinases on NF-kappa B and AP-1 activation and IL-8 and VEGF expression in human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma lines
Bancroft, C. C., Chen, Z., Yeh, J., Sunwoo, J. B., Yeh, N. T., & Van Waes, C. (2002). Effects of pharmacologic antagonists of epidermal growth factor receptor, PI3K and MEK signal kinases on NF-kappa B and AP-1 activation and IL-8 and VEGF expression in human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma lines. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF CANCER, 99(4), 538-548.

Transcript map of the 8p23 putative tumor suppressor region
Sun, P. C., Uppaluri, R., Schmidt, A. P., Pashia, M. E., Quant, E. C., & Scholnick, S. B. (2001). Transcript map of the 8p23 putative tumor suppressor region. GENOMICS, 75(1-3), 17-25.

IL (interleukin)-1 alpha promotes nuclear factor-kappa B and AP-1-induced IL-8 expression, cell survival, and proliferation in head and neck squamous cell carcinomas
Wolf, J. S., Chen, Z., Dong, G., Sunwoo, J. B., Bancroft, C. C., & Van Waes, C. (2001). IL (interleukin)-1 alpha promotes nuclear factor-kappa B and AP-1-induced IL-8 expression, cell survival, and proliferation in head and neck squamous cell carcinomas. CLINICAL CANCER RESEARCH, 7(6), 1812-1820.

Novel proteasome inhibitor PS-341 inhibits activation of nuclear factor-kappa B, cell survival, tumor growth, and angiogenesis in squamous cell carcinoma
Sunwoo, J. B., Chen, Z., Dong, G., Yeh, N., Bancroft, C. G., & Van Waes, C. (2001). Novel proteasome inhibitor PS-341 inhibits activation of nuclear factor-kappa B, cell survival, tumor growth, and angiogenesis in squamous cell carcinoma. CLINICAL CANCER RESEARCH, 7(5), 1419-1428.

Coexpression of proangiogenic factors IL-8 and VEGF by human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma involves coactivation by MEK-MAPK and IKK-NF-kappa B signal pathways
Bancroft, C. C., Chen, Z., Dong, G., Sunwoo, J. B., Yeh, N., & Van Waes, C. (2001). Coexpression of proangiogenic factors IL-8 and VEGF by human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma involves coactivation by MEK-MAPK and IKK-NF-kappa B signal pathways. CLINICAL CANCER RESEARCH, 7(2), 435-442.

Concurrent paclitaxel and radiation in the treatment of locally advanced head and neck cancer
Sunwoo, J. B., Herscher, L. L., Kroog, G. S., Thomas, G. R., Ondrey, F. G., & Van Waes, C. (2001). Concurrent paclitaxel and radiation in the treatment of locally advanced head and neck cancer. JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ONCOLOGY, 19(3), 800-811.

Homozygous deletions define a region of 8p23.2 containing a putative tumor suppressor gene
Sun, P. C., Schmidt, A. P., Pashia, M. E., Sunwoo, J. B., & Scholnick, S. B. (1999). Homozygous deletions define a region of 8p23.2 containing a putative tumor suppressor gene. GENOMICS, 62(2), 184-188.

Multiple regions of deletion on chromosome arm 13q in head-and-neck squamous-cell carcinoma
Gupta, V. K., Schmidt, A. P., Pashia, M. E., Sunwoo, J. B., & Scholnick, S. B. (1999). Multiple regions of deletion on chromosome arm 13q in head-and-neck squamous-cell carcinoma. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF CANCER, 84(5), 453-457.

Constitutive activation of transcription factors NF-kappa B, AP-1, and NF-IL6 in human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma cell lines that express pro-inflammatory and pro-angiogenic cytokines
Ondrey, F. G., Dong, G., Sunwoo, J., Chen, Z., Wolf, J. S., & Van Waes, C. (1999). Constitutive activation of transcription factors NF-kappa B, AP-1, and NF-IL6 in human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma cell lines that express pro-inflammatory and pro-angiogenic cytokines. MOLECULAR CARCINOGENESIS, 26(2), 119-129.

Localization of a putative tumor suppressor gene in the sub-telomeric region of chromosome 8p
Sunwoo, J. B., Sun, P. C., Gupta, V. K., Schmidt, A. P., El-Mofty, S., & Scholnick, S. B. (1999). Localization of a putative tumor suppressor gene in the sub-telomeric region of chromosome 8p. ONCOGENE, 18(16), 2651-2655.

Clinical correlations with allelotype in supraglottic squamous cancer
Scholnick, S. B., El-Mofty, S. K., Shaw, M. E., Sunwoo, J. B., Haughey, B. H., & Zequeira, M. R. (1998). Clinical correlations with allelotype in supraglottic squamous cancer. OTOLARYNGOLOGY-HEAD AND NECK SURGERY, 118(3), 363-370.

Chromosome 8 allelic loss and the outcome of patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the supraglottic larynx
Scholnick, S. B., Haughey, B. H., Sunwoo, J. B., ELMOFTY, S. K., Baty, J. D., & Zequeira, M. R. (1996). Chromosome 8 allelic loss and the outcome of patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the supraglottic larynx. JOURNAL OF THE NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE, 88(22), 1676-1682.

Evidence for multiple tumor suppressor genes on chromosome arm 8p in supraglottic laryngeal cancer
Sunwoo, J. B., Holt, M. S., Radford, D. M., Deeker, C., & Scholnick, S. B. (1996). Evidence for multiple tumor suppressor genes on chromosome arm 8p in supraglottic laryngeal cancer. GENES CHROMOSOMES & CANCER, 16(3), 164-169.

CELL-CYCLE OSCILLATION OF PHOSPHATASE INHIBITOR-2 IN RAT FIBROBLASTS COINCIDENT WITH P34CDC2 RESTRICTION
Brautigan, D. L., Sunwoo, J., Labbe, J. C., Fernandez, A., & Lamb, N. Jc. (1990). CELL-CYCLE OSCILLATION OF PHOSPHATASE INHIBITOR-2 IN RAT FIBROBLASTS COINCIDENT WITH P34CDC2 RESTRICTION. NATURE, 344(6261), 74-78.