Research Investigator Profile

Samuel D. Rabkin, PhD

Associate Professor of Surgery, (Microbiology & Immunobiology) Harvard Medical School

Associate Virologist, Massachusetts General Hospital Principal Investigator, Molecular Neurosurgery Lab, Brain Tumor Research Center, Department of Neurosurgery

Research Description

Oncolytic herpes simplex virus (HSV) virotherapy is a novel strategy to treat cancer, converting a human pathogen into a therapeutic agent. Taking advantage of HSV biology, virus replication is selectively targeted to cancer cells. Current areas of interest include: the effect of virus mutations on oncolytic (replication-competent) HSV activity and host-virus interactions; strategies combining oncolytic HSV with cancer therapeutics and their mechanism-of-action; immunotherapeutic strategies utilizing oncolytic HSV; isolation and characterization of cancer stem cells, in particular glioblastoma stem cells, and their use as models to test experimental therapeutics; neurofibromatosis type 1 and therapy for tumors that arise in these patients, in particular malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors.

Research interests

Diseases studied

Use of herpes simplex virus (HSV) vectors for cancer therapy and gene delivery in the nervous system

Glioblastoma, neurofibromatosis, brain tumors

NCBI PubMed link

Fax number

E-mail address

Lab mailing address


Richard B. Simches Research Center

Cambridge Street
Boston, MA 02114

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