Mark Johnson, MD, PhD
Director, Molecular and Cellular Neurosurgical Oncology Laboratory
Director, Neurosurgical Pain Management Program
Brigham and Women's Hospital
Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital
Assistant Professor of Surgery (Neurosurgery)
Harvard Medical School
The Johnson Laboratory, working in conjunction with the Neurosurgical Oncology Laboratory, focuses on understanding the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying brain tumor development and response to treatment, as well as understanding how neurons respond to various treatments for brain tumors. The two laboratories have joined forces to create an integrated team approach to understanding brain tumors and to finding a cure for these disorders.
The lab uses a variety of techniques to identify proteins that are involved in the growth, survival and malignant transformation of neurons and astrocytes. These techniques include culture of normal and cancerous cells from the nervous system, gene cloning and gene transfer techniques, RNAi and shRNA techniques, genomic microarray analyses of tumor DNA and messenger RNA, and a variety of proteomic techniques. Dr. Johnson and his team also collaborate closely with biostatisticians at the Harvard Genomics Center to conduct the statistical analyses required to analyze the large amounts of genetic information obtained from brain tumors.