About Nancy Harris, MD

Dr. Harris is the Austin L. Vickery, Jr. Professor of Pathology at Harvard Medical School. She is a member of the Hematopathology division at Mass General Hospital and Editor of the Case Records of the Massachusetts General Hospital for the New England Journal of Medicine. Dr. Harris obtained her BA Degree in English from Stanford University and her MD from Stanford Medical School. She interned in Internal Medicine at Barnes Hospital in St. Louis and trained in Pathology at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston.

After a research fellowship in Hematopathology at Massachusetts General Hospital, she joined the staff in 1980. She was director of Hematopathology from 1980 to 2009, director of Surgical Pathology from 1985 to 1992, and Director of Anatomic Pathology from 1992 to 1998. She was Program Director for the Anatomic and Clinical Pathology Residency Program from 1996 to 2001, and for the Hematopathology Fellowship Program from 1980 to 2004. She became Editor of the Case Records of the Massachusetts General Hospital for the New England Journal of Medicine in 2002. She continues an active diagnostic and consultation practice in Hematopathology today. Learn more about her contributions to the field of Pathology and to Mass General in Chapter 24, The Clinicopathological Conferences (CPCs) in Keen Minds to Explore the Dark Continents of Disease, a book on the history of the Pathology department of the Massachusetts General Hospital.

Clinical Interests:




Mass General Pathology
55 Fruit St.
Boston, MA 02114
Phone: 617-643-0800

Medical Education

  • MD, Stanford University School of Medicine
  • Residency, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
  • Fellowship, Massachusetts General Hospital

American Board Certifications

  • Anatomic Pathology and Clinical Pathology, American Board of Pathology

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Dr. Harris's research has focused on the relationship of lymphoid neoplasms to the normal immune system.  Her studies range from investigations of the biology and pathology of Hodgkin's lymphoma to the study of nodal and extranodal small B-cell lymphomas, including follicular, mantle cell and MALT lymphomas, to the study of large B-cell lymphomas in the mediastinum and in specific extranodal sites. Having learned hematopathology in an age of multiple classifications of lymphomas, Dr. Harris became particularly interested in establishing consensus in the classification of lymphoid neoplasms.

Working first with the International Lymphoma Study Group and then with the World Health Organization, Dr. Harris and colleagues formulated the Revised European American Classification of Lymphoid Neoplasms (REAL) and in 2001, published a new WHO Classification of lymphoid and myeloid neoplasms. This classification represents the first true international consensus on the classification of hematologic neoplasms, and established a paradigm for arriving at consensus among pathologists and clinicians on disease classification. An update was published in 2008.

In organizing and editing the Clinicopathologic Conferences at Massachusetts General Hospital, which are published as the Case Records of the Massachusetts General Hospital in the New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Harris has taken on the responsibility for educating readers about the contributions of pathologists, both laboratory medicine and anatomic pathologists, to the diagnosis and management of disease.

For a list of co-authors, related research concepts, and a timeline, visit Dr. Harris' profile page at the Harvard Clinical and Translational Science Center.


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