American Family Children's Hospital
John S. Kuo, MD, PhD close

John S. Kuo, MD, PhD Print Friendly Page

Faculty, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health

Dr. Kuo is associate professor of Neurological Surgery and Human Oncology and Director of the Comprehensive Brain Tumor Program at University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics. He specializes in treating benign and malignant brain and spinal tumors (i.e., GBM, pituitary tumor, meningioma, astrocytoma, metastatic cancer to brain), with special expertise in stereotactic radiosurgery for tumors, vascular lesions and trigeminal neuralgia. He co-directs the UW Comprehensive Cancer Center multidisciplinary Brain Tumor Clinic, and started the new, multidisciplinary Pituitary Tumor Clinic with colleagues in endocrinology, neuro-oncology, radiation oncology and neuro-ophthalmology. Dr. Kuo chairs the UW Comprehensive Cancer Center CNS Tumors Group, a national leader for clinical trials of new brain tumor therapies, and performs molecular biology research on cancer stem cells.


Dr. Kuo helped write a series of evidence-based guidelines for treating a common type of brain tumor. He authored one of seven chapters addressing the evaluation and treatment of nonfunctioning pituitary adenomas (NFPAs), benign tumors that are the most frequent pituitary tumors. The guidelines are being published as summaries in Neurosurgery.



UW Health Clinics

UW Carbone Cancer Center
(608) 263-8500 | (800) 323-8942 | Map
University Hospital
(608) 263-7502 | (800) 323-8942 | Map
University Hospital
(608) 263-7502 | (800) 323-8942 | Map

Hospital Affiliation(s)

University Hospital (primary)
Veterans Hospital - Wm. S. Middleton Memorial, UnityPoint Health - Meriter (secondary)

UW School of Medicine and Public Health

Department of Neurological Surgery

Professional Certifications and Education

Board Certification Neurological Surgery
Fellowship University of Toronto (Labatt Brain Tumor Research Center)
University of Southern California (Norris Comphrehensive Cancer Center)
Residency University of Southern California
Internship University of Southern California
Medical School Harvard Medical School, MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology, Boston, MA

Medical interpreters are available to help patients communicate with hospital and clinic staff. For more information, please contact interpreter services at (608) 262-9000.


Our doctors provide a wide range of services. The following list represents some, but not all, of the procedures offered by this physician.


Dr. Kuo’s research focuses on understanding the genesis of brain tumors, with the goal of developing novel therapies. He has investigated the radiosurgical management of brain tumors and the potential clinical use of novel gene markers in medulloblastomas. The Brain Tumor Research Laboratory is currently focused on the molecular biology of brain tumor stem cells and collaborating with other UW scientists to define possible molecular mechanisms of tumor stem cell pathogenesis to develop novel diagnostic and therapeutic strategies.

PubMed Articles
Clark PA Gaal JT Strebe JK Pasch CA Deming DA Kuo JS Robins HI . The effects of tumor treating fields and temozolomide in MGMT expressing and non-expressing patient-derived glioblastoma cells. J Clin Neurosci. 2017 Feb;36:120-124
[PubMed ID: 27865821]
Zhang RR Schroeder AB Grudzinski JJ Rosenthal EL Warram JM Pinchuk AN Eliceiri KW Kuo JS Weichert JP . Beyond the margins: real-time detection of cancer using targeted fluorophores. Nat Rev Clin Oncol. 2017 Jan 17;
[PubMed ID: 28094261]
Pointer KB Clark PA Eliceiri KW Salamat MS Robertson GA Kuo JS . Administration of Non-Torsadogenic human Ether-à-go-go-Related Gene Inhibitors Is Associated with Better Survival for High hERG-Expressing Glioblastoma Patients. Clin Cancer Res. 2017 Jan 1;23(1):73-80
[PubMed ID: 27635088]
Strebe JK Lubin JA Kuo JS . "Tag Team" Glioblastoma Therapy: Results From a Phase 1 Trial of Toca 511 and 5-Fluorocytosine for Recurrent High-Grade Glioma. Neurosurgery. 2016 Dec;79(6):N18-N20
[PubMed ID: 27861411]
Kalluri HS Kuo JS Dempsey RJ . Effect of D609 on the expression of GADD45β protein: Potential inhibitory role in the growth of glioblastoma cancer stem like cells. Eur J Pharmacol. 2016 Nov 15;791:510-517
[PubMed ID: 27658347]
Gaal JT Stenerson M Kuo JS . The enduring legacy of pioneering neuroscientist Dr. Jerzy Edwin Rose. J Clin Neurosci. 2016 Nov;33:69-72
[PubMed ID: 27523584]
Zhang RR Swanson KI Hall LT Weichert JP Kuo JS . Diapeutic cancer-targeting alkylphosphocholine analogs may advance management of brain malignancies. CNS Oncol. 2016 Oct;5(4):223-31
[PubMed ID: 27616199]
Zhang RR Lubin JA Kuo JS . Bioresorbable Silicon Electronic Sensors for the Brain. Neurosurgery. 2016 Oct;79(4):N19
[PubMed ID: 27635973]
Lubin JA Strebe J Kuo JS . Chemical Control of Grafted Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Neurons in a Mouse Parkinson Disease Model. Neurosurgery. 2016 Oct;79(4):N18-9
[PubMed ID: 27635972]
Kuo JS Barkhoudarian G Farrell CJ Bodach ME Tumialan LM Oyesiku NM Litvack Z Zada G Patil CG Aghi MK . Congress of Neurological Surgeons Systematic Review and Evidence-Based Guideline on Surgical Techniques and Technologies for the Management of Patients With Nonfunctioning Pituitary Adenomas. Neurosurgery. 2016 Oct;79(4):E536-8
[PubMed ID: 27635962]
Aghi MK Chen CC Fleseriu M Newman SA Lucas JW Kuo JS Barkhoudarian G Farrell CJ Sheehan J Ziu M Dunn IF . Congress of Neurological Surgeons Systematic Review and Evidence-Based Guidelines on the Management of Patients With Nonfunctioning Pituitary Adenomas: Executive Summary. Neurosurgery. 2016 Oct;79(4):521-3
[PubMed ID: 27635956]
Liu HL Hsu PH Lin CY Huang CW Chai WY Chu PC Huang CY Chen PY Yang LY Kuo JS Wei KC . Focused Ultrasound Enhances Central Nervous System Delivery of Bevacizumab for Malignant Glioma Treatment. Radiology. 2016 Oct;281(1):99-108
[PubMed ID: 27192459]
Keswani SG Moles CM Morowitz M Zeh H Kuo JS Levine MH Cheng LS Hackam DJ Ahuja N Goldstein AM . The Future of Basic Science in Academic Surgery: Identifying Barriers to Success for Surgeon-scientists. Ann Surg. 2016 Sep 16;
[PubMed ID: 27643928]
Clark PA Al-Ahmad AJ Qian T Zhang RR Wilson HK Weichert JP Palecek SP Kuo JS Shusta EV . Analysis of Cancer-Targeting Alkylphosphocholine Analogue Permeability Characteristics Using a Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Blood-Brain Barrier Model. Mol Pharm. 2016 Sep 6;13(9):3341-9
[PubMed ID: 27421304]
Pointer KB Clark PA Schroeder AB Salamat MS Eliceiri KW Kuo JS . Association of collagen architecture with glioblastoma patient survival. J Neurosurg. 2016 Sep 2;:1-10
[PubMed ID: 27588592]
Zhu W Carney KE Pigott VM Falgoust LM Clark PA Kuo JS Sun D . Glioma-mediated microglial activation promotes glioma proliferation and migration: roles of Na+/H+ exchanger isoform 1. Carcinogenesis. 2016 Sep;37(9):839-51
[PubMed ID: 27287871]
Swanson KI Nickele CM Kuo JS . Iatrogenic intracranial placement of nasopharyngeal airway after trauma. Br J Neurosurg. 2016 Aug;30(4):448-9
[PubMed ID: 26760290]
Zhang RR Strebe JK Kuo JS . Heparan Sulfates Promote Amyloid Pathology in Alzheimer Disease. Neurosurgery. 2016 Aug;79(2):N12-3
[PubMed ID: 27428635]
Clark PA Bhattacharya S Elmayan A Darjatmoko SR Thuro BA Yan MB van Ginkel PR Polans AS Kuo JS . Resveratrol targeting of AKT and p53 in glioblastoma and glioblastoma stem-like cells to suppress growth and infiltration. J Neurosurg. 2016 Jul 15;:1-13
[PubMed ID: 27419830]
De I Steffen MD Clark PA Patros CJ Sokn E Bishop SM Litscher S Maklakova VI Kuo JS Rodriguez FJ Collier LS . CSF1 Overexpression Promotes High-Grade Glioma Formation without Impacting the Polarization Status of Glioma-Associated Microglia and Macrophages. Cancer Res. 2016 May 1;76(9):2552-60
[PubMed ID: 27013192]