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Maie St. John, MD, PhD

  • Otolaryngology|
  • Head and Neck Surgery
Head & Neck Surgery | 200 Medical Plaza, Suite 550, Los Angeles, CA 90095


Academic and Medical Staff Appointments:

  • Professor and Chair, Department of Head & Neck Surgery
  • Thomas C. Calcaterra, M.D., Chair in Head and Neck Surgery
  • Co-Director, UCLA Head and Neck Cancer Program

Post-doctoral Research: Division of Oral Biology and Surgery, UCLA School of Medicine 2005

A highly renowned surgeon, scientist, and educator, Dr. St. John is Professor and the Chair of Department of Head and Neck Surgery and Professor of Bioengineering at UCLA. She also holds the Thomas C. Calcaterra, M.D., Chair in Head and Neck Surgery and is Co-Director of the UCLA Head and Neck Cancer Program. Dr. St. John's laboratory studies the mechanisms of tumor progression and metastasis in head and neck cancer and seeks to identify and study novel genes and pathways for future targeted therapies, while actively incorporating the results of their laboratory-based research into the development of novel therapeutics. Her extramurally-funded research portfolio includes multiple NIH grants bridging basic science with clinical research and service. Dr. St. John is an outstanding educator who has provided mentorship to numerous trainees and serves as a member of several prestigious organizations including the Executive Council of the American Head and Neck Society, Nominating Committee of the Triological Society, American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, American College of Surgeons Board of Governors Advisory Council, and American Laryngological Association. She also is a senior examiner for the American Board of Otolaryngology and a reviewer for the American Academy of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery CORE grants, and NIH/NIDCR, NCI and NIBIB study sections. She has been the recipient of multiple awards for teaching and research.

Dr. St. John received her B.S. from Stanford University and M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from Yale University. She completed residency and postdoctoral training at UCLA and served previously as Chief of Head and Neck Surgery at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.

Dr. St. John's clinical expertise is in intraoperative tumor margin delineation in the resection and treatment of head and neck cancers to allow for precision surgery. Her laboratory research is translational with a focus on improving therapies and outcomes for patients with head and neck cancer. Her efforts have helped in the development of strong interdepartmental research programs in Head & Neck Surgery and Bioengineering. This work has led to clinical trials and patent applications and has been consistently funded by the NIH, charitable foundations, and industry.

In addition to maintaining a busy surgical practice, Dr. St. John is active in clinical research and is closely involved in training young physician-scientists in her role as Executive Director of Cancer Research and Education at the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. She is a prolific author in head and neck medicine and a sought-after lecturer both nationally and internationally. Dr. St. John has a deep passion for international collaboration in clinical care, research and education and has set up partnerships in Central America, India, China and the Middle East. She has served on numerous editorial boards of several international journals, including Cancer, Clinical Cancer Research, Head & Neck and The Laryngoscope. Dr. St. John has consistently been named one of America's Top Doctors by the Castle Connolly Guide.

Comprehensive expertise:

  • Robotic surgery of the head and neck
  • Cancer of oral cavity, throat, oropharynx, tongue, tonsil, larynx, palate
  • Neck masses (congenital, cancer)
  • Complex skull base cancer surgery
  • Thyroid and parathyroid surgery
  • Cutaneous skin malignancy (melanoma, squamous cell carcinoma, Merkel cell carcinoma)
  • Lymphoscintigraphy and sentinel node biopsy
  • Parotid and salivary gland neoplasm surgery
  • Surgery of the oral cavity and larynx including minimally invasive approach

Board Certification:

  • American Board of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Service

Patient Appointments: 310-794-7075

Academic Office: 310-206-3631

Professional Memberships:

  • American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery
  • American Head & Neck Society
  • Triological Society
  • Fellow, American College of Surgeons
  • American Laryngological Association
  • American Association for Cancer Research
  • National Comprehensive Cancer Network
  • Collegium Oto-Rhino- Laryngologicum Amicitiae Sacrum
  • Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute

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Medical Board Certification

Otolaryngology, American Board of Otolaryngology, 2006


Otolaryngology, UCLA School of Medicine, 2005


Surgery, UCLA School of Medicine, 2001


MD, PhD, Yale University School of Medicine, 1999



West Los Angeles

Head & Neck Surgery

Head and Neck Surgery| Pediatric Head and Neck Surgery

Hospital Affiliations

Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center


Meet Maie St. John, MD, PhD
Outrunning Cancer



Dr. St. John's research encompasses several areas of translational investigation in head & neck cancer. Dr. St. John's laboratory is interested in understanding the mechanisms of tumor progression and metastasis in head and neck cancer. She and her colleagues are investigating COX-2-dependent gene and protein expression and determining how these modify tumor invasion, angiogenesis, immunity and apoptosis in head & neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Novel genes and pathways for future targeted therapies are also being identified and studied. Dr. St. John's lab is also involved in actively incorporating the results of their laboratory-based research into the development of novel therapies for HNSCC patients.


  • Aetna
  • Anthem Blue Cross
  • Blue Shield of California
  • Centivo
  • Cigna
  • First Health
  • Health Net of California
  • Interplan (part of HealthSmart)
  • L.A. Care
  • MultiPlan
  • UFCM Health System
  • Prime Health Services
  • Private Healthcare Systems (PHCS)
  • UnitedHealthcare

The list of health care plans above may not be comprehensive and could change. 
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  • Super Doctors® Southern California, 2024
  • Top Doctor – Otolaryngology, Los Angeles Business Journal, 2021
  • Top Doctors, Los Angeles Magazine, 2015-2021 annual recognition
  • Thomas C. Calcaterra, MD, Chair in Head and Neck Surgery, 2019
  • Los Angeles Magazine Super Doctor, Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery
  • Exceptional Women in Medicine, Castle Connolly, 2018-2020, annual recognition
  • Samuel and Della Pearlman Chair, in Head and Neck Surgery, 2015-2018
  • UCLA Health Exceptional Physician Award, 2015
  • Most Outstanding Head & Neck Surgery Faculty Award, 2007, 2009, 2011
  • UCLA Health System Humanism Award, 2011-2012
  • American Academy of Otolaryngology-Program Advisory Committee
  • American Board of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery Task Force
  • EAO Young Leadership Award
  • Fanconi Anemia Award for the best research paper at the AHNS International Conference