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Marta Couce, MD, PhD
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Marta Couce, MD, PhD

  • Primary Location: 2085 Adelbert Rd (0 mi.)
    Other Locations
  • Languages Spoken: English, Spanish, Portuguese, Catalan

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Or call 216-844-7118

Office Locations

Case Western Reserve University (0 mi.)

2085 Adelbert Rd
Cleveland, OH 44106

Biography: Marta Couce, MD, PhD


  • Bone and Soft Tissue Pathology
  • Breast Pathology
  • Diagnostic Electron Microscopy
  • Eye Pathology
  • Fluorescent In Situ Hybridization
  • Gastrointestinal Pathology
  • Molecular Anatomic Pathology
  • Muscle Pathology
  • Neuropathology
  • Pathology Management


  • Professor of Pathology, CWRU School of Medicine
  • Professor of Ophthalmology, CWRU School of Medicine

Certifications & Memberships

  • Anatomic Pathology - American Board of Pathology


Fellowship | Neuropathology
Neuropathology - Mayo Clinic (1998 - 1999)

Fellowship | Surgical Pathology
Surgical Pathology - Mayo Clinic (1997 - 1998)

Fellowship | Neuropathology
Neuropathology - Mayo Clinic (1996 - 1997)

Residency | Anatomic Pathology
Anatomic Pathology - Yale-New Haven Hospital (1994 - 1996)

Research Fellowship | Endocrinology
Endocrinology - Mayo Clinic (1993 - 1994)

Other Education
Universidad De Santiago De Compostela (1991)

Medical Education
Universidad De Santiago De Compostela (1986)


Marta E. Couce, MD, PhD, professor of pathology and ophthalmology, joined the faculty at Case Western Reserve University and the medical staff of University Hospitals in 2013, where she has clinical responsibilities in diagnostic neuropathology, ophthalmic and ENT pathology.

Dr. Couce was born in Spain and graduated from Santiago de Compostela Medical School. She completed her predoctoral studies at the University of East Carolina, Medical School in the Department of Neurobiology and Neuroanatomy. Her doctoral thesis, was entitled “Expression and regulation of Insulin-like growth factor II, IGF-II / Mannose 6-Phosphate receptor and PKC isoforms in the rat CNS". Dr Couce completed a residency in Anatomic Pathology at Yale University, followed by two fellowships in Surgical Pathology and Neuropathology (which included ophthalmic Pathology) at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, where she also was an Instructor in Pathology. Subsequently, Dr. Couce was an associate professor and clinical pathologist at Boston University and at the University of Pittsburg Medical Center. Thereafter, Dr. Couce joined the Department of Anatomic Pathology at Hospital Universitario Son Dureta and Son Espases, Palma de Mallorca (IB, Spain) as consultant and chairperson.


One of Dr. Couce’s main interests in neuropathology has been the field of metabolism, and, particularly, how the brain plays a key role in obesity. Working with autopsy human brains, we were among the first ones to map key neurotransmitters and their receptors in specific hypothalamic nuclei. By providing direct evidence of their expression and distribution in the human brain through relatively simple but rigorous studies, this body of work opened up different lines of investigations that are and will continue to be crucial in the field of obesity research.

Directly related to her training as a Neuropathologist came also her interest in brain tumors. Some of her earlier publications are directly linked to interesting, unique cases from the diagnostic end. The intention of these publications was to communicate unusual findings in well-known primary and metastatic tumors of the Central Nervous System (CNS), with particular emphasis in their molecular fingerprint. These studies emphasized contextual factors in the etiology and particular attributes of specific subtypes of tumors. This body of work has contributed to the different updates in the WHO classification of tumors of the CNS. Additionally, she was the PI in a study involving territorial differences in the molecular fingerprint and redox state of gliomas, using en bloc resection of tumors.

After she joined University Hospitals, she became a co-investigator in the study of primary and recurrent gliomas, and the effects of the current treatment protocols with Dr. Sloan’s group, contributing to the understanding of these very complex and heterogeneous primary tumors of the brain. She has also been closely involved in the work on computational analysis for diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment evaluation of primary and metastatic brain tumors.

Recently Dr. Couce was named the director of the tissue shared resource from the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center.


Dr. Couce is an active member of two ophthalmic pathology societies: The Verhoeff-Zimmerman and the EOPS where she presents at their annual meetings.

Dr Couce is lecturer at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, including: Block 6 Lectures and Reviews, Head-Neck/Eye Pathology and PATH523 course. In addition, she is actively involved in pathology and ophthalmology residency training, through direct interactions at the scope with residents and through lectures such as: Neuropathology Lectures series (two-year curriculum) and Ophthalmic Pathology Lectures series for pathology and ophthalmology residents (one-year curriculum, with review lectures).

Industry Relationships

University Hospitals is committed to transparency in our interactions with industry partners, such as pharmaceutical, biotech, or medical device companies. At UH, we disclose practitioner and their family members’ ownership and intellectual property rights that are or in the process of being commercialized. In addition, we disclose payments to employed practitioners of $5,000 or more from companies with which the practitioners interact as part of their professional activities. These practitioner-industry relationships assist in developing new drugs, devices and therapies and in providing medical education aimed at improving quality of care and enhancing clinical outcomes. At the same time, UH understands that these relationships may create a conflict of interest. In providing this information, UH desires to assist patients in talking with their practitioners about industry relationships and how those relationships may impact their medical care.

UH practitioners seek advance approval for certain new industry relationships. In addition, practitioners report their industry relationships and activities, as well as those of their immediate family members, to the UH Office of Outside Interests annually. We review these reports and implement management plans, as appropriate, to address conflicts of interest that may arise in connection with medical research, clinical care and purchasing decisions.

View UH’s policy (PDF) on practitioner-industry relationships.

As of December 31, 2016, Marta Couce did not disclose any Outside Relationships with Industry.