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David Akhavan, M.D., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Radiation Oncology

Professional Background

After receiving his Doctor of Medicine degree at the University of California Los Angeles in the Medical Scientist Training Program. Dr. Akhavan in collaboration with Dr. Tim Cloughesy, went on to complete his PhD in Dr. Paul Mischel’s laboratory studying mechanisms of resistance to EGFR Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors at the University of California Los Angeles. Dr. Akhavan then completed his residency in Radiation Oncology at the City of Hope National Medical Center. There, he completed imbedded postdoctoral training at the T cell Research Laboratory (TCTRL) in the laboratory of Dr. Christine Brown studying CAR T cells for Glioma.

Education and Training
  • PhD, Molecular and Medical Pharmacology, University of California, Medical Scientist Training Program, Los Angeles, CA
  • MD, Medical Doctorate, University of California, Medical Scientist Training Program, Los Angeles, CA
  • BS, Biomedical Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA
  • Residency, Radiation Oncology, City of Hope National Medical Center, Duarte, CA
Licensure, Accreditations & Certifications
  • Kansas License, Kansas State Board of Healing Arts
Professional Affiliations
  • Midwest Stem Cell Therapy Center Scientific Advisor Committee , Member, 2020 - Present
  • American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy, Member, 2019 - Present
  • American Society of Therpeutic Radiation Oncologists, Member, 2019 - Present
  • Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer, Member, 2019 - Present



Dr. Akhavan also conducts an activate research laboratory developing cell-based immunotherapy targeting malignant brain tumors, including Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T cells. His laboratory focuses on a molecular dissection of tumor antigen loss, T cell exhaustion, and cell manufacturing bottlenecks.

  • Shinde, A, Akhavan, D, Sedrak, M, Glaser, S, Amini, A. 2019. Shifting paradigms: whole brain therapy versus stereotactic radiosurgery for brain metastases. CNS Oncology
  • Amini, A, Robin, T, Rusthoven, C., G, Schefter, T., E, Akhavan, D, Chen, Y., J, Glaser, S., M, Corr, B., R, Ashing, K., T, Fisher, C., M. 2019. Disparities Predict for Higher Rates of Cut-Through Hysterectomies in Locally Advanced Cervical Cancer. AJCO, 42 (1), 21-26
  • Akhavan, D, Pourzia, A., L, Nourian, A., A, Williams, K., J, Nathanson, D, Babic, I, Villa, G., R, Tanaka, K, Nael, N, Yang, H, Dang, J, Vinters, H., V, Yong, W., H, Flagg, M, Tamanoi, F, Sasayama, T, James, C., D, Kornblum, K., I, Cloughesy, T., F, Cavanee, W., K, Bensinger, S., J, Mischel, P., S. 2017. De-repression of PDGFRβ transcription promotes acquired resistance to EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors in glioblastoma patients. Cancer Discov