David Potter, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Hematology, Oncology and Transplantation

David Potter

Contact Info


Office Phone 612-625-8933

Lab Phone 612-626-7207

Mailing Address:
Division of Hematology, Oncology and Transplantation
420 Delaware Street SE
MMC 480
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Administrative Assistant Name
Pamela Hansen

Administrative Phone

Administrative Email

Administrative Fax Number

Medical School, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD

Residency, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, CA


After undergraduate studies in biology at M.I.T., Dr. Potter received M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from Johns Hopkins University. He trained in Internal Medicine at Stanford University Medical Center, and in Hematology and Oncology at Tufts-New England Medical Center. He performed post-doctoral studies at the M.I.T. Center for Cancer Research in the laboratory of Dr. Phillip Sharp. He was on the faculty at Tufts University, the Indiana University Cancer Center and moved to the University of Minnesota in 2006, where he is a member of the Breast Cancer Program at the Masonic Cancer Center.

Awards & Recognition

  • Phi Beta Kappa
  • Excellence in Teaching Award, Tufts University School of Medicine (1999)
  • Walther Prize for Cancer Research, Walther Cancer Institute (2004)
  • Outstanding Clinical Teacher, Inidian University School of Medicine (2004)

Professional Associations

  • Member, American Society of Clinical Oncology
  • Member, American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
  • Member, American Association for Cancer Research
  • Translational Oncology Course Co-Leader, MSTP/MD, PhD Program Steering Committee
  • Breast ISC Team Leader, Cancer Biology Training Grant Steering Committee


Research Summary/Interests

  • Novel therapeutics for breast cancer

Regulation of calpain proteases and their roles in cytoskeletal remodeling; the roles of cytochrome P450 in breast cancer progression
Three enzymatic pathways of arachidonic acid metabolism, involving cyclooxygenases, lipoxygenases and epoxygenases, have been identified in mammalian cells, but only the first two have been mechanistically linked to human cancer. The HIV protease inhibitor ritonavir is a potent inhibitor of epoxygenases that arrests the growth of breast cancer xenografts, but its mechanism of action is unknown. Epoxygenases promote the production of epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EET’s) that activate Akt kinase. Our studies seek to determine whether epoxygenases are cancer therapeutic targets. The hypothesis to be tested is that epoxygenase activation promotes breast cancer progression by promoting Akt phosphorylation and cancer cell survival. Based on our observations we are asking the following questions: What are the molecular mechanisms by which epoxygenases cause growth dysregulation in breast cancer? Do epoxygenases enhance the transforming activities of oncogenes in mammary carcinoma? Do epoxygenase pathways require Hsp90 activity for cancer cell survival? Targeted lipidomics will be used to assay EET regio- and stereoisomers. These studies will promote further development of epoxygenases as targets for breast cancer therapeutics.


  • Rodriguez M, Potter DA. CYP1A1 regulates breast cancer proliferation and survival. Mol Cancer Res. 2013 Jul;11(7):780-92. doi: 10.1158/1541-7786.MCR-12-0675. Epub 2013 Apr 10.Potter DA, Yee D, Guo Z, Rodriguez M. Should diabetic women with breast cancer have their own intervention studies? Endocr Relat Cancer 2012 Feb 13;19(1):C13-7.
  • Mitra R, Guo Z, Milani M, Mesaros C, Rodriguez M, Nguyen J, Luo X, Clarke D, Lamba J, Schuetz E, Donner DB, Puli N, Falck JR, Capdevila J, Gupta K, Blair IA, Potter DA. CYP3A4 Mediates Growth of Estrogen Receptor-positive Breast Cancer Cells in Part by Inducing Nuclear Translocation of Phospho-Stat3 through Biosynthesis of (+/-)-14,15-Epoxyeicosatrienoic Acid (EET). J Biol Chem. 2011 May 20;286(20):17543-59.
  • Srirangam A, Milani M, Mitra R, Guo Z, Rodriguez M, Kathuria H, Fukuda S, Rizzardi A, Schmechel S, Skalnik DG, Pelus LM, Potter DA. The human immunodeficiency virus protease inhibitor ritonavir inhibits lung cancer cells, in part, by inhibition of survivin. J Thorac Oncol. 2011 Apr;6(4):661-70.
  • Mitra R, Lee J, Jo J, Milani M, McClintick JN, Edenberg HJ, Kesler KA, Rieger KM, Badve S, Cummings OW, Mohiuddin A, Thomas DG, Luo X, Juliar BE, Li L, Mesaros C, Blair IA, Srirangam A, Kratzke RA, McDonald CJ, Kim J, Potter DA. Prediction of postoperative recurrence-free survival in non-small cell lung cancer by using an internationally validated gene expression model. Clin Cancer Res. 2011 May 1;17(9):2934-46.
  • Milani M, Jha G, Potter DA. Anastrozole Use in Early Stage Breast Cancer of Post-Menopausal Women. Clin Med Ther. 2009 Mar 31;1:141-156.
  • Carpenter JS, Rawl S, Porter J, Schmidt K, Tornatta J, Ojewole F, Helft P, Potter DA, Sweeney C, Giesler RB. Oncology outpatient and provider responses to a computerized symptom assessment system. Oncol Nurs Forum. 2008; 35:661-669.
  • Srirangam A, Mitra R, Wang M, Gorski JC, Badve S, Baldridge LA, Hamilton J, Kishimoto H, Hawes J, Li L, Blum JS, Donner DB, Sledge GW, Nakshatri H, Potter DA. Effects of HIV protease inhibitor ritonavir on Akt-regulated cell proliferation in breast cancer. Clin. Cancer Res. 2006; 12: 1883-1896.
  • Zhang B, Srirangam A, Potter DA, Roman A. 2005. HPV16 E5 protein disrupts the c-Cbl-EGFR interaction and EGFR ubiquitination in human foreskin keratinocytes. Oncogene 2005; 24:2585-2588.
  • Henley JD, Summerlin DJ, Potter DA, Timmerman RD, Tomich CE. Intraoral mucin-rich salivary duct carcinoma. Histopathology 2005; 47(4):436-437.
  • Narayanasamy V, Mukhopadhyay S, Palakal M, Potter DA. TransMiner: Mining transitive associations among biological objects from text. Journal of Biomedical Science 2004; 11:864-873.
  • Glading A, Bodnar R, Reynolds IJ , Shiraha H, Satish L, Potter DA, Blair HC, Wells A. EGF activates m-calpain (calpain 2), at least in part, by ERK-mediated phosphorylation. Mol. Cell. Biol. 2004; 24: 2499-2512.
  • D. A. Potter, Anjaiah Srirangam, K. A. Fiacco, D. Brocks, M. Maki , D. Acheson and I. M. Herman. 2003 Calpain Regulates Enterocyte Brush Border Actin Assembly and Pathogenic E. coli-Mediated Effacement. J. Biol. Chem. 278 (32):30403–30412.
  • Croce, K., R. Flaumenhaft, M. Rivers, B. C. Furie, B. Furie, I. M. Herman and D. A. Potter. 1999. Calpain regulates platelet secretion, aggregation and spreading. J. Biol. Chem. 274:36321-36327.
  • Potter, D. A., J. S. Tirnauer, R. Janssen, D. E. Croall, C. N. Hughes, K. A. Fiacco, J.W. Mier, M. Maki and I. M. Herman. 1998. Calpain regulates the actin cytoskeleton during cell spreading. J. Cell Biol. 141:647-662.



Breast Center

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Internal Medicine - Hematology
  • American Board of Internal Medicine - Oncology

Clinical Interests

Novel therapeutics for breast cancer