Nabil F. Saba, MD, FACP



Dr. Saba's academic work focuses on upper aerodigestive malignancies, namely head and neck and esophageal cancer, as well as the clinical development of novel agents and therapeutic modalities.

Titles and Roles

Professor, Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology
Emory University School of Medicine
Vice Chair for Quality and Safety, Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology
Emory University School of Medicine
Adjunct Professor, Department of Otolaryngology
Emory University School of Medicine
Co-Director, Head and Neck Cancers Multi-Disciplinary Program
Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University
Medical Oncologist
Head and Neck Cancer
Esophageal Cancer
Thyroid Cancer
Lung Cancer
Research Program
Discovery and Developmental Therapeutics


Nabil F. Saba, MD, FACP, is Professor and Vice Chair for Quality and Safety in the Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology and holds a joint appointment as Professor in the Department of Otolaryngology at Emory University School of Medicine. Dr. Saba serves as Co-Director of the Head and Neck Cancers Multi-Disciplinary Program at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University.

Dr. Saba is a recognized expert in immunotherapy for head and neck cancer. His work is focused on translational research and the study and development of novel therapeutic agents and modalities in head and neck and esophageal cancer. He leads several clinical trials and chairs national as well as investigator initiated multi-institution studies focusing on novel approaches for treating these diseases.

Dr. Saba is the elected Chair of the National Cancer Institute's task force for recurrent metastatic head and neck cancer, and chaired the Rare Tumors Task Force of the National Cancer Institute's Head and Neck Cancer Steering Committee; he was recognized by the NCI for his outstanding service as committee chair. Dr. Saba is also an active member of the NRG Oncology and Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) Head and Neck Cancer Core Committees. In addition, Dr. Saba has been appointed as a member of the ASCO clinical guidelines committee as well as the ASCO Head and Neck Guideline Advisory Group.


Dr. Saba earned his Medical Degree from the American University of Beirut Medical School. He completed a Residency in Internal Medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, and a Clinical Fellowship in Hematology and Oncology at Brown University School of Medicine and a Bone Marrow Transplant Fellowship at the University of Toronto Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto, Canada.


Dr. Saba's research is focused on clinical and translational work in head and neck, and esophageal cancer. He has been the recipient of several NIH and industry funded grant support to study these malignancies. He has received funding from the NIH to examine novel genomic approaches for diagnosing HPV positive oropharyngeal cancers. He conducts and leads a number of head and neck cancer clinical trials with a focus on biomarker endpoints including two cooperative group studies.

Among Dr Saba's contributions is serving as a co-leader of project 4 of the previously funded Emory Head and Neck Cancer SPORE and serving as a Principal Investigator of the recently submitted Emory Head and Neck Cancer SPORE grant.

  • Below is a listing of current federal grants for the above principal investigator.



Dr. Saba has authored more than 150 multiple peer-reviewed articles, editorials, review papers, book chapters as well as two Uptodate chapters. He is the editor of the textbook, "Esophageal Cancer, Prevention, Diagnosis and Treatment" which was published in two editions. He is associate editor for Head Neck and a member of the editorial board of Cancer, Oral Oncology, and American Journal of Clinical Oncology. He has been recognized as an outstanding reviewer for the journal, Cancer.

  • PublicationsPublication Date


Dr. Saba is a recipient of the following awards:

  • Atlanta Magazine's "Top Doctors", 2005, 2016-2020
  • MilliPub Club Award, Emory University School of Medicine, 2020
  • Director's Service Award, National Cancer Institute, 2019
  • Outstanding reviewer for journal, Cancer, 2017
  • Castle Connolly Top Doctors, 2011 and 2014
  • Distinguished Doctor, Expert Network, 2015
  • Recognition for outstanding contribution to the Fellowship program, University of Minnesota, Hematology Oncology and transplant section, 2003
  • Dean's Honor List, American University of Beirut, 1984-1990

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