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Joseph Perren (J. Perren) Cobb, MD

Director, MGH Critical Care Center

Vice-Chair for Critical Care, Department of Anaesthesia, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine

Associate Professor of Anaesthesia and Surgery, Harvard Medical School

  • Phone: 617-726-3030
Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine


  • Critical Care Center
  • Surgical Intensive Care Unit
  • Trauma Center
Clinical Interests
Critical care
Boston: Massachusetts General Hospital
Medical Education
MD, University of Louisville School of Medicine
Residency, University of California San Francisco
Fellowship, National Institute of Health
Fellowship, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Board Certifications
Surgery, American Board of Surgery
Surgical Critical Care, American Board of Surgery
Patient Gateway
Yes, learn more
Patient Age Group
Accepting New Patients
Accepting New Patients


Dr. Cobb's clinical specialty is surgical critical care with a research interest in the pathophysiology of sepsis and injury.  His early research focus was the treatment of sepsis; more recently he's worked with collaborators nationally to develop a novel sepsis diagnostic, the riboleukogram, which uses contemporary genomics and microfluidics technology to track the host response to injury and infection.  Since moving to Boston in 2008, Dr. Cobb has worked with colleagues to create the new MGH Critical Care Center and the Harvard Catalyst Reanimation and Health Engineering program. 

His investigative work has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma, the Society of Critical Care Medicine, and the Barnes Jewish Hospital Foundation.  His awards include the Research Scholarship Award of the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma, the Founders Grant for Critical Care Research of the Society of Critical Care Medicine, the George H. A. Clowes, Jr. Memorial Research Career Development Award of the American College of Surgeons, and the 2nd Annual Critical Care Medicine Distinguished Alumnus of the University of Pittsburgh.  Dr. Cobb is a former President of the Association for Academic Surgery and is Director of the US Critical Illness and Injury Trials (USCIIT) Group.

ResearchThe future of intensive care requires integrating advances in biomedical and engineering sciences. We apply knoweldge of systems, cellular, and molecular engineering to study how best to improve outcomes, aiming to engineer health in our most vulnerable patient population.  The goal of this new program, Reanimation and Health Engineering, is to fully reanimate the critically ill or injured.  Examples of current projects include quantitative modeling of patient flow through the hospital, ICU quality and value dashboards, measuring effectiveness of process improvement interventions, testing efficacy of telemedicine, and stem cell therapy for organ dysfunction.  You can learn more about our vision for the future of critical care research at the MGH Critical Care Center and the Harvard Catalyst.

PublicationsView publications

Mass General Critical Care Center investigators enjoy first research retreat

Massachusetts General Hospital investigators collaborate with clinical staff to generate new knowledge and discuss innovations at the First Annual Critical Care Research Retreat.

Enhancing the patient and family experience

Local artist donates prints to the MGH Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) waiting room.

Critical Care Center staff win award for research in patient and family support

Massachusetts General Hospital Critical Care Center staff members were recognized for their study on communication between providers and family members in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

Why we run

MGH marathon runners — in their own words

Critical Care Grand Rounds: Improving Intensive Care Unit Outcomes: Easy as ABCDE

J. Perren Cobb, MD, director of the Massachusetts General Hospital Critical Care Center, presents on the ABCDE Bundle for quality assurance and performance improvement.

MGH Critical Care Center
55 Fruit St
Boston, MA 02114-2696

Phone: 617-726-3030

MGH Critical Care Center
55 Fruit St
Boston, MA 02114-2696

Phone: 617-726-3030

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