John A. Boockvar, MD

Professor, Feinstein Center for Neuroscience, The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research

Professor, Laboratory for Brain Tumor Biology and Therapy, The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research

Co-Director, Brain Tumor Biotech Center, The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research

Vice Chair, Department of Neurosurgery, Lenox Hill Hospital

Director, Brain Tumor and Pituitary/Neuroendocrine Center, Lenox Hill Hospital

Professor, Neurosurgery and Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery, Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell

Phone: (212) 434-3900

About the Investigator

John A. Boockvar, MD is vice chair of the Department of Neurosurgery at Lenox Hill Hospital, director of the Brain Tumor Center, and the Pituitary/Neuroendocrine Center of the Division of Neurological Surgery and the New York Head and Neck Institute at Lenox Hill and Manhattan Eye, Ear and Throat Hospitals. Dr. Boockvar is also a professor of Neurological Surgery and Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery at the Zucker School of Medicine, and a professor at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research where he directs the Laboratory for Brain Tumor Biology and Therapy.

Dr. Boockvar is internationally known for his surgical expertise and for providing patients with safe, effective, and minimally invasive treatment for brain tumors, skull base disorders, and disorders of the spine. Dr. Boockvar’s surgical expertise is in benign and malignant brain tumors, skull base and endoscopic pituitary surgery, spinal and peripheral nerve tumors, minimally invasive spinal surgery, and complex spinal disorders. Dr. Boockvar has been recognized for his novel research in brain tumors and stem cell biology. He has been named to the lists of New York Magazine’s Top Docs, Best Doctors in New York-Castle Connolly, SuperDoctors, America’s Top Surgeons, America’s Best Doctors, and America’s Best Doctors for Cancer. His research has been widely published and he has received numerous national awards including the Eric Lichtenstein Humanitarian Award from Voices Against Brain Cancer for his compassionate work in treating patients with brain cancer. In 2016, Dr. Boockvar was elected to the prestigious Academy of Neurological Surgeons.

Dr. Boockvar has been repeatedly featured on CNN, ABC, CNBC, CBS, and Fox News Channel, and has appeared on The Dr. Oz Show as well as in the New York Times, New York Daily News, and Crain’s Business Journal among others. Dr. Boockvar was a featured neurosurgeon on the ABC hit show NY MED. In 2015, Dr. Boockvar was again named to the New York super doctors list and he was one of only two neurosurgeons in the nation to be featured in the documentary Surviving Terminal Cancer. Most recently, Dr. Boockvar was featured on NBC’s Today Show for solving a patient’s medical mystery. Dr. Boockvar is also an honorary surgeon of the NYPD and the New York State Troopers.

Dr. Boockvar received a BA from the University of Pennsylvania. Like his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather before him, Dr. Boockvar received an MD from SUNY Brooklyn-Downstate Medical Center. Dr. Boockvar graduated summa cum laude with Distinction in Research and was medical school class valedictorian. Dr. Boockvar did his surgical internship and neurosurgical residency at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Boockvar did his NIH-supported post-doctoral research training in Neuro-oncology at the University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center.

Research Focus

Dr. Boockvar currently co-directs the Laboratory for Brain Tumor Biology and Therapy at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research. His laboratory interests have focused on adult human neural stem cell biology as it relates to brain tumor formation and resistance to therapy.  Dr. Boockvar is a world expert on blood brain barrier disruption to improve the delivery of therapeutics to the human brain.

Dr. Boockvar is the principal investigator of several cutting edge clinical trials using blood brain barrier disruption to deliver high dose chemotherapy for patients with malignant brain tumors that have been featured in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. Dr. Boockvar has served as Editor-in-Chief of the journal Current Stem Cell Research and Therapy and is an editorial board member of the Journal of Neuro-Oncology, Neurosurgery, Journal of Neurosurgery, and Recent Patents on Anti-Cancer Drug Discovery.

Dr. Boockvar directs the Brain Tumor Biotech Center at the Institute that seeks to bridge the translational gap between basic and clinical science for patients with malignant brain tumors.  Dr. Boockvar’s laboratory has been funded by the National Institutes of Health and he was recently awarded the American Association of Neurological Surgeons Pinnacle Partners Award for his research into brain tumors. He has also won research awards from Voices Against Brain Cancer, the American Brain Tumor Association, the Starr Foundation, Anspach Companies, and the Adelson Foundation.


SUNY Downstate Medical School, Brooklyn, NY
Degree: MD, Medical School Valedictorian, Summa Cum Laude with Distinction in Research

University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA
Degree: Resident
Field of Study:  Neurosurgery

University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center, Philadelphia, PA
Degree: Post-Doctoral Fellow
Field of Study: Brain Tumor and Stem Cell Biology

  1. White T, Chakraborty S, Lall R, Fanous A, Boockvar JA, Langer DJ. “Frameless Stereotactic Insertion of Viewsite Brain Access System with Microscope-Mounted Tracking Device for Resection of Deep Brain Lesions: Technical Report.”  Cureus 9(2): e1012. DOI 10.7759/cureus.1012
  2. Yondorf MZ, Schwartz TH, Boockvar JA, Pannullo S, Stieg P, Sabbas A, Pavese A, Trichter S, Nedialkova L, Parashar B, Nori D, Chao KS, Wernicke AG. “Radiation Exposure and Safety Precautions Following 131Cs Brachytherapy in Patients with Brain Tumors.” Health Phys. 2017 Apr;112(4):403-408. doi: 10.1097/HP.0000000000000551. PubMed PMID: 28234701
  3. Zhou Z, Luther N, Singh R, Boockvar JA, Souweidane MM, Greenfield JP. “Glioblastoma spheroids produce infiltrative gliomas in the rat brainstem.” Childs Nerv Syst. 2017 Feb 24. doi: 10.1007/s00381-017-3344-y. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 28236065.
  4. Khan MB, Chakraborty S, Boockvar JA. “Gross Total Resection of Glioblastoma Improves Overall Survival and Progression-Free Survival Compared to Subtotal Resection or Biopsy Alone.” Neurosurgery. 2016 Dec;79(6):N12-N13. PubMed PMID: 27861406.
  5. Tham T, White TG, Chakraborty S, Lall RR, Ortiz R, Langer DJ, Shatzkes D, Filippi CG, Kraus D, Boockvar JA, Costantino PD “Intra-arterial cetuximab for the treatment of recurrent unresectable head and neck squamous cell carcinoma<sup>†</sup>.” J Exp Ther Oncol. 2016 Nov;11(4):293-301. PubMed PMID: 27849340.
  6. Chakraborty S, Filippi CG, Burkhardt JK, Fralin S, Ray A, Wong T, Ortiz R, Langer DJ, Boockvar JA “Durability of single dose intra-arterial bevacizumab after blood/brain barrier disruption for recurrent glioblastoma.” J Exp Ther Oncol. 2016 Nov;11(4):261-267. PubMed PMID: 27849336.
  7. Mukherjee S, Baidoo J, Fried A, Atwi D, Dolai S, Boockvar J, Symons M, Ruggieri R, Raja K, Banerjee P. “Curcumin changes the polarity of tumor-associated microglia and eliminates glioblastoma.” Int J Cancer. 2016 Dec 15;139(12):2838-2849. doi: 10.1002/ijc.30398. PubMed PMID: 27543754.
  8. Chakraborty S, Schneider J, Boockvar JA “Transdifferentiation Induced Neural Stem Cells for the Treatment of Malignant Gliomas.” Neurosurgery. 2016 Aug;79(2):N17-8. doi: 10.1227/01.neu.0000489888.02840.33. PubMed PMID: 27428639.
  9. Wernicke AG, Lazow SP, Taube S, Yondorf MZ, Kovanlikaya I, Nori D, Christos P, Boockvar JA, Pannullo S, Stieg PE, Schwartz TH. “Surgical Technique and Clinically Relevant Resection Cavity Dynamics Following Implantation of Cesium-131 (Cs-131) Brachytherapy in Patients With Brain Metastases.” Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown). 2016 Mar;12(1):49-60. PubMed PMID: 27774500; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5068574.
  10. Alimi M, Njoku I, Hofstetter CP, Tsiouris AJ, Kesavabhotla K, Boockvar J, Navarro-Ramirez R, Härtl R. “Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF): Comparison Between Zero Profile Implants and Anterior Cervical Plate and Spacer.” Cureus. 2016 Apr 17;8(4)
  11. Singh R, Kesavabhotla K, Kishore SA, Zhou Z, Tsiouris AJ, Filippi CG, Boockvar JA, Kovanlikaya I. “Dynamic Susceptibility Contrast-Enhanced MR Perfusion Imaging in Assessing Recurrent Glioblastoma Response to Superselective Intra-Arterial Bevacizumab Therapy.” AJNR Am J Neuroradiol. 2016 May 26. [Epub ahead of print]
  12. Chakraborty S, Filippi CG, Wong T, Ray A, Fralin S, Tsiouris AJ, Praminick B, Demopoulos A, McCrae H, Bodhinayake I, Ortiz R, Langer DJ, Boockvar JA. “Superselective intraarterial cerebral infusion of cetuximab after osmotic blood/brain barrier disruption for recurrent malignant glioma: phase I study.” J Neurooncol. 2016 Mar 5. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 26945581
  13. Chakraborty S, Bodhinayake I, Chiluwal A, Langer DJ, Ruggieri R, Symons M, Boockvar JA. “Neuro-oncology biotech industry progress report.” J Neurooncol. 2016 Feb 20. [Epub ahead of print]PMID: 26897014
  14. Wernicke AG, Yondorf MZ, Parashar B, Nori D, Clifford Chao KS, Boockvar JA, Pannullo S, Stieg P, Schwartz TH. “The cost-effectiveness of surgical resection and cesium-131 intraoperative brachytherapy versus surgical resection and stereotactic radiosurgery in the treatment of metastatic brain tumors.” J Neurooncol. 2016 Jan 2. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 26725100
  15. Chakraborty S, Priamo F, Boockvar JA. “Magnetic Resonance Imaging to Identify Glioblastoma Molecular Phenotypes.” Neurosurgery. 2016 Feb;78(2):N20-1. doi: 10.1227/01.neu.0000479895.10242.9d. No abstract available.PMID: 26779797
  16. Tham T, Costantino PD, Bruni M, Langer D, Boockvar J, Singh P. “Multiportal Combined Transorbital and Transnasal Endoscopic Resection of Fibrous Dysplasia.” [published online Oct 25 2015] J Neurol Surg Rep. 2015. doi: 10.1055/s-0035-1566126
  17. Bodhinayake I, Symons M, Boockvar JA. “Repurposing mebendazole for the treatment of medulloblastoma.” Neurosurgery. 2015 Feb;76(2):N15-6. doi: 10.1227/01.neu.0000460594.93803.cb
  18. Gamble AJ, Boockvar JA. “Toxin-secreting implantable therapeutic stem cells.” Neurosurgery. 2015 Apr;76(4):N16-8.
  19. Singh R, Cope WP, Zhou Z, De Witt ME, Boockvar JA, Tsiouris AJ. “Isolated cortical vein thrombosis: case series.” J Neurosurg. 2015 Aug;123(2):427-33. doi: 10.3171/2014.9.JNS141813. Epub 2015 Mar 20.PMID: 25794339
  20. De Witt ME, Boockvar JA. “A New Tool in Defining Disease Progression in Glioblastoma.” Neurosurgery. 2015 Aug;77(2):N13-5. doi: 10.1227/01.neu.0000467293.33634.17. No abstract available

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