Michael Girardi, MD
Photo: Michael Girardi



Elected 2008

Clinical Expertise: Dr. Girardi is Co-Director of the Yale Cutaneous Lymphoma Group, Director of the Photopheresis Unit, and Director of the Phototherapy Unit at the Yale Comprehensive Cancer Center and Yale-New Haven Hospital. Dr. Girardi is also an active member of the national and international organizations (United States Cutaneous Lymphoma Consortium, International Society of Cutaneous Lymphoma) that formulate and publish the criteria guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment CTCL, and is executing the largest clinical database for CTCL. He has published over 150 scientific manuscripts, clinical reports, and chapters, including on the genetic basis of CTCL and a Medical Progress Report for the New England Journal of Medicine. Dr. Girardi was recently awarded the 2017 Zeligman Award by Johns Hopkins University for his expertise in understanding the genetic and immunologic mechanisms that cause CTCL, and he has delivered over 100 national and international lectures including at the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Harvard University, University of Pennsylvania, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Moffitt Cancer Center, Kings College London, and Northwestern University. Dr. Girardi is currently Professor, Vice Chair, Residency Director, and NIH T32 Research Fellowship Co-Director for the Department of Dermatology, Yale School of Medicine. Disease expertise: the diagnosis and management of cutaneous lymphoma and related conditions, including: mycosis fungoides (MF) cutaneous T cell lymphoma (CTCL) [variants of which include folliculotropic MF, follicular mucinosis MF, hypopigmented (hypomelanotic) MF, pagetoid reticulosis (Woringer-Kolopp disease), erythrodermic MF, tumor-stage (T3) MF, transformed MF (T-MF), large cell transformation MF (LCT-MF), and Sézary syndrome (SS)]; CD30+ lymphoproliferative disorders (CD30+ LPD) including lymphomatoid papulosis (LyP) and anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL); CD4+ small/medium/pleomorphic T cell lymphoma (CD4+ SMPTCL); cutaneous B cell lymphoma (CBCL) [variants of which include primary cutaneous marginal zone B cell lymphoma (PCMZBCL) and primary cutaneous follicle center B cell lymphoma (PCFLBCL); lymphocytoma cutis (pseudolymphoma); parapsorias (including large plaque and small plaque variants); subcutaneous panniculitic T cell lymphoma (SCPTCL); cutaneous CD8+ cytotoxic T cell lymphoma; cutaneous gamma-delta T cell lymphoma; and cutaneous NK/T cell lymphoma.

Laboratory Research: During more than 20 years leading an NCI-funded research program at Yale, Dr. Girardi’s laboratory is credited with major contributions to our understanding of skin biology immunology and skin cancer development, including the elucidation of roles for gamma-delta T cells, NKG2D ligands, and Langerhans cells. Dr. Girardi has served as the Co-Director for the Yale Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Immunology and Immunotherapy Program, and is the holder/filer of 4 biomedical patents on cancer diagnosis and treatment and co-founder of two Yale startup companies. Watch a video with Dr. Michael Girardi >>

Dr. Girardi’s current research projects include:

  • The role of local immune cells in the development of cutaneous carcinogenesis. Using state-of-the-art genetically engineered mice, immunobiology techniques, and confocal imaging, the Girardi laboratory is dissecting how various immune cells, resident within and recruited to the skin, contribute the skin cancer development.
  • Novel approaches to the diagnosis and treatment of cutaneous T cell lymphoma (CTCL). Overseeing one of the largest centers for CTCL, Dr. Girardi and colleagues use genetic sequencing and robotic transfer to enhance diagnosis and to screen and develop new pharmaceutical agents in the treatment of this malignancy.
  • Biodegradable nanotechnology in the prevention and treatment of skin cancer. In collaboration with W.M. Saltzman (Professor, Yale Biomedical Engineering) and Douglas Brash (Professor, Genetics), Dr. Girardi’s lab is developing novel strategies for skin cancer prevention and treatment.