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Xandra Breakefield, Ph.D. is a basic scientist with a strong background in molecular genetics and neuroscience. She 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.
Professor 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.