Xandra Breakefield, Ph.D.
Dr. Xandra Breakefield is currently the Professor of Neurology in the Neuroscience Program at Harvard Medical School and Geneticist in the Neurology and Radiology Services at the Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Breakefield focuses her research efforts on gene therapy for neurologic diseases and elucidation of the role of extracellular vesicles (EVs) released from cancer cells in tumor progression. She led early studies demonstrating mutant RNA in serum EVs from glioblastoma patients as biomarkers.
Dr. Breakefield has received a number of awards for her work, including a McKnight Foundation Neuroscience Development Award, two Javits Neuroscience Investigator Awards, the Society for Neuroscience Mika Salpeter Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Harvard Medical School William Silen Lifetime Achievement Mentoring Award. She is a member of the National Academy of Arts and Sciences and past president of the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy.
Dr. Breakefield did her undergraduate work at Wilson College and her Ph.D. in Microbial Genetics at Georgetown University. She was a Postdoctoral Fellow with Nobel Prize winner, Dr. Marshall Nirenberg at the NIH.