UCSF Neurosurgeon Named to Two National Organizations

October 05, 2007
News Office: Vanessa deGier (415) 502-6397

Dr. Mitch Berger, a neurosurgeon at UCSF Medical Center and chair of Neurological Surgery, has been elected to the board of directors of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) and appointed to the American Board of Neurological Surgeons.

Founded in 1931 as the Harvey Cushing Society, the AANS is a scientific and educational association with more than 7,200 members worldwide. The association is dedicated to advancing the specialty of neurological surgery to provide the highest quality of neurosurgical care. The organization plays a key role in leading the field.

Dr. Tom Marshall, executive director of the AANS, said, "The AANS and I have been benefiting from Dr Berger's advice and counsel in many ways over the years, most recently through his role as the physician chair responsible for developing programming for the two most successful annual scientific meetings in the organization's history. I am personally very grateful and excited to have Dr Berger's keen insight and perspective in assisting leadership and management in guiding the AANS' policy for the next several years as a member of our board."

As a member of the American Board of Neurological Surgeons, Berger will be part of a small group of academic leaders who dictate policy with regard to board certification for all neurosurgeons in the country.

Berger is nationally recognized for his expertise in treating brain and spinal cord tumors and tumor-related epilepsy in adults and children. He also is a specialist in brain mapping techniques, used to identify areas of motor, sensory and language function to avoid injury during surgery and an expert in the use of the Gamma Knife for tumor treatment. He is co-director of the Adult Brain Tumor Surgery Program, director of the Brain Tumor Research Center and director of the Center for Neurological Injury and Repair.

In addition to his clinical practice, Berger is the principal investigator of two National Cancer Institute grants — the Special Programs of Research Excellence (SPORE) grant for research into improving diagnosis, prognosis and therapy of brain tumors and the Program Project grant investigating imaging surrogate markers of brain tumors.

He is the administrative core director on research into molecular and cellular biology of pediatric brain tumors and the recipient of numerous National Institutes of Health grants, which provide support for the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Berger earned a bachelor's degree at Harvard College in 1975 and a medical degree at the University of Miami, School of Medicine in 1979. He completed an internship and residency at UCSF and was awarded a clinical fellowship in neuro-oncology by the American Cancer Society and a research fellowship with the Brain Tumor Research Center. Berger completed additional fellowship training in neuro-oncology at UCSF and in pediatric neurosurgery at the Hospital for Sick Children of the University of Toronto, Canada.

Berger, who joined UCSF in 1997 as chair of Neurological Surgery, is board certified in neurosurgery.

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