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
Director, Head and Neck Medical Oncology Program
Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University
Medical Oncologist
Esophageal Cancer
Head and Neck Cancer
Lung Cancer
Thyroid Cancer
Research Program
Discovery and Developmental Therapeutics


Nabil F. Saba, MD, FACP, is a Professor in the Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology at Emory University School of Medicine and Director of the Head and Neck Cancer Medical Oncology Program at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University. Dr. Saba leads several institutional and national head and neck cancer trials including investigator initiated studies focusing on novel approaches for treating these diseases.

Prior to joining the faculty at Emory University, he served as Assistant Professor of Hematology and Medical Oncology at the University of Minnesota where he was recognized for his outstanding contribution to the fellowship program.

Dr. Saba is a member of the National Cancer Institute's task force for recurrent metastatic head and neck cancer, and in 2016 was named co-chair of the Rare Tumors Task Force of the National Cancer Institute’s Head and Neck Cancer Steering Committee. He is also a member of ECOG head and neck cancer steering committee, an elected member to the American Head and Neck Society, and serves on the American College of Radiology appropriateness criteria panel for head and neck cancer.


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 Clinical Fellowships in Hematology and Oncology at Brown University School of Medicine, and in Bone Marrow Transplant at the University of Toronto Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto, Canada. 


Dr. Saba's research is focused on clinical and translational work in upper aerodigestive tumors specifically 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 large number of head and neck cancer clinical trials with a focus on molecular endpoints.

Among Dr Saba's contributions is being a co-investigator on the Department of Defense, USAMRMC grant looking at "Multi-Biomarker System Using Quantum Dot Technology for Assessments of Prognosis of NSCLC" and serving as a co-leader of project 4 of the Emory Head and Neck Cancer SPORE involving the application of nano-therapeutics-based therapy for treating advanced head and neck cancer. His work has helped to advance drug development and clinical trials for head and neck, and esophageal cancers.

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



Dr. Saba has authored more than 100 multiple peer-reviewed articles, editorials, review papers, book chapters as well as two Uptodate chapters. Dr. Saba is a member of the editorial board of Oral Oncology, Head Neck as well as the American Journal of Clinical Oncology.

  • PublicationsPublication Date


Dr. Saba is a recipient of the following awards:

  • Castle Connolly Top Doctors, 2011 and 2014
  • Distinguished Doctor, Expert Network, 2015
  • Top Doctors, Atlanta Magazine, 2005
  • 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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