Griffith Harsh, M.D.

Griffith R. Harsh, M.D.


Neurological Surgery


  • Professor and Chair
  • Julian R. Youmans Endowed Chair in Neurological Surgery


To see if Griffith R. Harsh is accepting new patients, or for assistance finding a UC Davis doctor, please call 800-2-UCDAVIS (800-282-3284).

UC Davis Midtown Ambulatory Care Center

3160 Folsom Blvd, Suite 3900
Sacramento, CA 95816
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Additional Phone Numbers

Physician Referrals: 800-4-UCDAVIS (800-482-3284)

Clinical Interests

Dr. Harsh is recognized as a leading surgeon and scholar. His clinical practice and research focus on innovative treatments of tumors of the brain, pituitary gland and skull base. His work has demonstrated the efficacy of stereotactic radiosurgery for multiple types of brain tumors and of endoscopic removal of pituitary and other skull base tumors.

Dr. Harsh has authored more than 200 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters, edited four scientific and clinical books, and served as editor and reviewer of numerous journals. He has served as president of the American Academy of Neurological Surgery, president of the Neurosurgical Society of America, vice president of the Society of Neurological Surgeons, vice chair of the ACGME Neurosurgery Residency Review Committee and chair of the executive council of the Neurosurgery Research and Education Foundation.

At UC Davis, he leads a multidisciplinary team of surgeons, scientists and residents who diagnose and treat adults and children with conditions such as benign brain and pituitary tumors, cancer, cerebrovascular disease, degenerative spine problems, epilepsy, movement disorders, and traumatic brain injury. The department also collaborates closely with the university’s NCI-designated comprehensive cancer center, level I trauma center, Center for Neuroscience and Stroke Program.

Research/Academic Interests

Dr. Harsh's basic science research has investigated the molecular biology of brain tumors. His laboratory has identified molecular mechanisms that promote tumor growth and strategies for disrupting them. His team discovered a gene deletion and a therapeutic target for glioblastoma, the most common and malignant type of brain tumor.

Dr. Harsh has also helped test use of a fluorescent antibody that distinguishes cancerous from normal brain tissue in patients with glioblastoma, to increase the safety and precision of surgical treatment.



Neurological Surgery


M.D., Harvard Medical School, Cambridge MA 1980

M.B.A., Boston University, Boston MA 1999

A.B., Harvard College, Cambridge MA 1975

M.A., Oxford University (Rhodes Scholar), Oxford, England 1978

Internship: Surgery, UC San Francisco Medical Center, San Francisco CA 1980-1981


Neurological Surgery, UC San Francisco Medical Center, San Francisco CA 1981-1986


Brain Tumor Research Center, National Institutes of Health- Department of Neurological Surgery UC San Francisco Medical Center, UC San Francisco CA 1984

Clinical Fellow, American Cancer Society, UC San Francisco Medical Center, San Francisco CA 1985

Harvey Cushing Research Fellow, American Association of Neurological Surgeons, Department of Neurological Surgery UC San Francisco, San Francisco CA 1986-1988

Board Certifications

American Board of Neurological Surgery - Diplomate, 1989

National Board of Medical Examiners, Diplomate, 1981

Professional Memberships

American Academy of Neurological Surgery

American Association of Neurologic Surgeons

American Board of Neurological Surgery

American College of Surgeons

Neurosurgical Society of America

North American Skull Base Society

One Neurosurgery

Society of Neurological Surgeons

The Pituitary Society

Honors and Awards

Outstanding Program Director Award, Stanford University School of Medicine, 2016

Excellence in Teaching and Mentoring Award, Neurosurgery, Stanford University School of Medicine, 2014

Journal of Neuro-Oncology Award for Outstanding Tumor Paper, AANS, 2011

Visiting Professor, Mayo Medical School/Mayo Clinic, 2008

Who�s Who in the World (2005-), 2005

America�s Top Doctors for Cancer (2005-), 2005

America�s Top Doctors (2004-), 2004

Select Recent Publications

Bredel M, Scholtens DM, Yadav AK, Alvarez AA, Renfrow JJ, Chandler JP, Yu IL, Carro MS, Dai F, Tagge MJ, Ferrarese R, Bredel C, Phillips HS, Lukac PJ, Robe PA, Weyerbrock A, Vogel H, Dubner S, Mobley B, He X, Scheck AC, Sikic BI, Aldape KD, Chakravarti A, Harsh GR. NFkBIA deletion in Glioblastomas. New England Journal of Medicine 364:627-637, 2011. PMID: 21175304

Rennert RC, Achrol AS, Januszyk M, Kahn SA, Liu TT, Liu Y, Sahoo D, Rodrigues M, Maan ZN, Wong VW, Cheshier SH, Chang SD, Steinberg GK, Harsh GR, Gurtner GC. Multiple Subsets of Brain Tumor Initiating Cells Coexist in Glioblastoma. Stem Cells. 2016 Jun;34(6):1702-7.

Hiniker SM, Modlin LA, Choi CY, Atalar B, Seiger K, Binkley MS, Harris JP, Liao YJ, Fischbein N, Wang L, Ho A, Lo A, Chang SD, Harsh GR, Gibbs IC, Hancock SL, Li G, Adler JR, Soltys SG. Dose-Response Modeling of the Visual Pathway Tolerance to Single-Fraction and Hypofractionated Stereotactic Radiosurgery. Semin Radiat Oncol. 2016 Apr;26(2):97-104.

Sussman ES, Ho AL, Pendharkar AV, Achrol AS, Harsh GR 4th. Pituitary Apoplexy Associated with Carotid Compression and a Large Ischemic Penumbra. World Neurosurg. 2016 Aug;92:581.e7-581.e13. Epub 2016 Jun 16.

Pollom EL, Fujimoto D, Wynne J, Seiger K, Modlin LA, Jacobs LR, Azoulay M, von Eyben R, Tupper L, Gibbs IC, Hancock SL, Li G, Chang SD, Adler JR, Harsh GR, Harraher C, Nagpal S, Thomas RP, Recht LD, Choi CYH, Soltys SG. Phase 1/2 Trial of 5-Fraction Stereotactic Radiosurgery With 5-mm Margins With Concurrent and Adjuvant Temozolomide in Newly Diagnosed Supratentorial Glioblastoma: Health-Related Quality of Life Results. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2017 May 1;98(1):123-130.

Graim K, Liu TT, Achrol AS, Paull EO, Newton Y, Chang SD, Harsh GR 4th, Cordero SP, Rubin DL, Stuart JM. Revealing cancer subtypes with higher-order correlations applied to imaging and omics data. BMC Med Genomics. 2017 Mar 31;10(1):20.

Gholamin S, Mitra SS, Feroze AH, Liu J, Kahn SA, Zhang M, Esparza R, Richard C, Ramaswamy V, Remke M, Volkmer AK, Willingham S, Ponnuswami A, McCarty A, Lovelace P, Storm TA, Schubert S, Hutter G, Narayanan C, Chu P, Raabe EH, Harsh G 4th, Taylor MD, Monje M, Cho YJ, Majeti R, Volkmer JP, Fisher PG, Grant G, Steinberg GK, Vogel H, Edwards M, Weissman IL, Cheshier SH. Disrupting the CD47-SIRPα anti-phagocytic axis by a humanized anti-CD47 antibody is an efficacious treatment for malignant pediatric brain tumors. Sci Transl Med. 2017 Mar 15;9(381).

Iagaru A, Mosci C, Mittra E, Zaharchuk G, Fischbein N, Harsh G, Li G, Nagpal S, Recht L, Gambhir SS. Glioblastoma Multiforme Recurrence: An Exploratory Study of (18)F FPPRGD2 PET/CT. Radiology. 2016 Jul;280(1):328.

Ajlan A, Achrol AS, Albakr A, Feroze AH, Westbroek EM, Hwang P, Harsh GR 4th. Cavernous Sinus Involvement by Pituitary Adenomas: Clinical Implications and Outcomes of Endoscopic Endonasal Resection. J Neurol Surg B Skull Base. 2017 Jun;78(3):273-282.

Choi CYH, Wakelee HA, Neal JW, Pinder-Schenck MC, Yu HM, Chang SD, Adler JR, Modlin LA, Harsh GR, Soltys SG. Vorinostat and Concurrent Stereotactic Radiosurgery for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Brain Metastases: A Phase 1 Dose Escalation Trial. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2017 Sep 1;99(1):16-21.