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Photo of Dr. Milena Vuica-Ross, M.D.

Milena Vuica-Ross, M.D.

Female  | Languages: English, Croatian, German, Latin

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The Johns Hopkins Hospital

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The Johns Hopkins Hospital

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600 N. Wolfe Street
Sheikh Zayed Tower
Baltimore, MD 21287 map
Phone: 410-614-4754




Dr. Milena Vuica-Ross is an assistant professor of pathology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She specializes in hematologic pathology, with particular emphasis on chromosome translocations, deletions of chromosome arms and internal deletions or inversions that may lead to the progression of cancer.

She holds an M.D. from the University of Zagreb in Croatia. She conducted three fellowships at Johns Hopkins, one in immunology, one in molecular genetics and one in pathology. She also completed a residency in pathology at The Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Dr. Vuica-Ross has authored or co-authored numerous peer-reviewed publications. She is board certified in hematology and clinical pathology. more

    Additional Information

  • Education +


    • University Hospital Centre of Zagreb / MD (1991)


    • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Pathology (2001)


    • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Pathology (2003)


    • American Board of Pathology / Clinical Pathology (2004)
    • American Board of Pathology / Hematology (2005)
  • Research & Publications +

    Research Summary

    Cancer progression is often associated with the accumulation of gross chromosomal rearrangements (GCRs), such as translocations, deletion of a chromosome arm, internal deletions or inversions. These malignancies are generally unresponsive to treatment and carry dismal prognoses. Not much is known about the processes that lead to genome rearrangements, what pathways might suppress rearrangements, and whether defects in these pathways underlie the ongoing genome instability seen in many cancers. This highlights a need for better understanding of the underlying biology, which hopefully will lead to better management of these malignancies.

    Recent studies in yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae have begun to uncover extensive and redundant pathways and genes that keep the rate of chromosomal rearrangements at very low levels. Human homologues of several of these genes have well-established roles as tumor suppressors, consistent with the hypothesis that the mechanisms preserving genomic stability in yeast are the same ones that go awry in cancer.

    To look for the factors that prevent a loss of a chromosome arm (q- phenotype), Dr. Vuica-Ross has developed a genome-wide screen for terminal deletions in a yeast artificial chromosome (YAC) carrying human chromosome VII sequence flanked by several selectable markers. The YAC has been transferred into an isogenic set of yeast deletion mutants from the recently completed Yeast Genome Deletion Project. Dr. Vuica-Ross also has identified potentially novel chromosome integrity determinants and is currently characterizing them.

    Selected Publications

    1. Ross AE, Vuica M, Desiderio S. "Overlapping signals for protein degradation and nuclear localization define a role for intrinsic RAG-2 nuclear uptake in dividing cells." Mol Cell Biol. 2003, 5308-5319.
    2. Casteel DE, Zhuang S, Gudi T, Tang J, Vuica M, Desiderio S, Piltz R. "cGMP-dependent protein kinase I beta physically and functionally interacts with the transcriptional regulator TFII-I." J Biol Chem 2002, 277:32003-32014.
    3. Vuica M, Desiderio S, Schneck JP. "Differential effects of B cell receptor and B cell receptor-Fc?RIIB1 engagement on docking of Csk to GAP-associated p62." J Exp Med 1997, 186:259-267.
    4. Banfic H, Vuica M, Knotek M, Moslavac S, Divecha N. "Inositol lipid signalling occurs in brush-border membranes during initiation of compensatory renal growth in the rat." Biochem J. 1993, 295:599-605.
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