Tomas Ganz

Professor, Medicine, University of California Los Angeles

Professor, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of California Los Angeles

(310) 825-6112

Office Address:
CHS 47-200J
David Geffen School of Medicine
Los Angeles, CA 90095

Fax Number:
310-206-8622

Work Address:
UCLA Med-Pul & Critical Care
BOX 951690, 43-229 CHS
Los Angeles, CA 90095

Tomas Ganz is a Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Pathology at UCLA. He received his PhD from the California Institute of Technology in Applied Physics and MD and advanced medical training from UCLA. He discovered and characterized hepcidin and erythroferrone, the principal hormones of iron homeostasis, authoring more than 300 publications and more than 30 book chapters, with current H-index of 162 (Google Scholar). Dr. Ganz has served as an Associate Editor of Blood, President of the International Bioiron Society and a member of the hematology-focused study sections of the National Institutes of Health. He has helped start three biotechnology enterprises, focused on the diagnostic and therapeutic applications of hepcidin and erythroferrone, and has advised leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. He received the Marcel Simon Award of the International Bioiron Society in 2005, for the discovery of hepcidin and the American Society of Hematology E. Donnall Thomas Award in 2014 for “groundbreaking research in iron homeostasis, including the discovery of the iron-regulatory hormone hepcidin and investigation of its roles in iron metabolism”. He has trained more than thirty graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty in his research laboratory. His current research interests include systemic iron metabolism and its regulation, the role of iron in innate immunity and infection, the interaction between erythropoiesis and iron homeostasis, and the pathogenesis of beta-thalassemia and other iron-loading anemias.

 

Research Interests

Iron is an essential trace element whose plasma concentrations must be maintained in a narrow range. Prolonged decrease in plasma iron concentration causes cellular iron deficiency and anemia, and prolonged increase causes iron toxicity leading to organ failure and death. Our group discovered the iron-regulatory hormone hepcidin and, together with others, characterized its effects, regulation and mechanism of action. Hepcidin binds to the cellular iron channel/receptor ferroportin and induces its internalization and degradation. We are studying the molecular pathways involved in hepcidin and ferroportin regulation, and developing lead candidates for the treatment of iron disorders, including hereditary hemochromatosis and various anemias. Experimental approaches range from molecular analysis of gene and protein regulation in cell lines and transgenic mice, synthetic production and testing of natural and modified peptides, to histopathologic studies and assays of samples from human patients and experimental animals.

Awards and Honors

  • Elected Member, American Association of Physicians, 2006.
  • Medical Science Award, UCLA Medical Alumni Association, 2007.
  • Marcel Simon Prize, International Bioiron Society, 2005.
  • Gold Medal for Achievements in Immunology and Pathophysiology, Charles University of Prague, 2021.
  • E. Donnall Thomas Prize, American Society of Hematology, 2014.

Publications