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Dr. Mastorakos is a cerebrovascular neurosurgeon with interest in elucidating the role of the immune system in damage and repair following ischemic and hemorrhagic insults to the brain. His focus is to identify the innate immune pathways involved in inducing secondary injury and driving repair in these disease processes. He aims to develop a seamless connection between bench research and clinical practice to improve basic understanding of the immune response to cerebrovascular injury that will translate to improved patient care.

He received his initial research training at Johns Hopkins University under Dr. Justin Hanes and Rangaramanujam Kannan. He focused on optimizing delivery of nanotherapeutics to the central nervous system. Specifically, he developed densely coated non-viral gene vectors able to rapidly traverse the extracellular space and effectively deliver their cargo to their target cell. In this way, he was able to construct therapeutic schemes for a glioblastoma rodent model using convection-enhanced delivery and for a Parkinson’s disease rodent model using systemic administration with focused ultrasound targeted blood brain barrier opening. This work was the basis of four patents as well as three R01 and one R24 NIH funded grants.

He subsequently developed interest in secondary injury related to cerebrovascular disease and received training in neuroimmunology from Dr. Dorian McGavern at the National Institutes of Health. He focused on the myeloid cell responses following hemorrhagic stroke and employed a combination of immunology techniques to describe the interplay between invading monocytes and microglia and their role in acute injury and repair. Using the tools developed for this project he also delineated the mechanism by which myelomonocytic cells initiate meningeal repair following traumatic brain injury and determined that the presence of a systemic infection distracts the myelomonocytic cells and interferes with the immune driven reparatory.

He joined the UTSouthwestern department of Neurosurgery and the O'Donnell Jr. Brain Institute and aims to characterize the immune drivers of secondary injury following aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage, focusing on the effect of subarachnoid blood on the CSF-brain interface and the corresponding parenchymal immune response, the role of meningeal innate immune cells in secondary injury as well as the role of intracranial pressure fluctuations in triggering the initial immune response.


Medical School
University of Athens School of Health Sciences, Greece (2012)
Other Post Graduate Training
University of Athens School of Health Sciences, Greece (2017)
National Institute of Health (2022)
University of Virginia (2022), Neurological Surgery
National Institute of Health (2022), Neurological Surgery
Thomas Jefferson University (2023), Cerebrovascular Neurosurgery

Research Interest

  • Development of therapeutics for intraarterial immunomodulation for chronic subdural hemorrhage
  • Immune response to acute intracranial pressure fluctuations
  • Innate immune drivers of secondary injury following aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications


Featured Books Legend Featured Books

General Principles for the Management of Ruptured and Unruptured Intracranial Aneurysms. In Principles of Neurological Surgery

Mastorakos P. Ding D. Starke R. (2018). Elsevier

Treatment of the Adult Chiari I Malformation. In The Chiari Malformations

Mastorakos P. Heiss J. (2020). Springler

Pituitary Adenomas. In Textbook of Pediatric Neurosurgery

Taylor DG. Mastorakos P. Paisan GM. Pomeraniec IJ. Lopes MB. Jane JAJ. (2019). Springer Nature

Perioperative Challenges During Cerebrovascular Surgery. In Essentials of Neurosurgical Anesthesia and Critical Care

Mastorakos P. Raper DMS. Liu KC. (2020). Springer

Predicting Outcomes of Stereotactic Radiosurgery for Dural Arteriovenous Fistulas. In Cranial and spinal dural arteriovenous fistulas

Chandrabhatla AS. Mastorakos P. Chen CJ. Ding D. Sheehan J. (2022). Springer Nature

Honors & Awards

  • Disease-Oriented Clinical Scholars (DOCS) program Award, UTSouthwestern
  • Excellence in research award, Department of neurosurgery, University of Virginia
  • Jane - Nugent basic science presentation award, The Neurosurgical Society of the Virginias
  • Donald O. Quest, MD, FAANS(L) Basic Science Award, AANS Young Neurosurgeons Research Forum
    Immunology of Cerebrovascular Injury: Innate Drivers of Damage and Repair (2021)
  • Jane - Nugent basic science presentation award, The Neurosurgical Society of the Virginias
  • National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke Clinical Research Excellence Award
    Intrathecal endoscopy for spinal arachnoiditis: lessons learned from a single center experience (2021)
  • National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke Directors Award
    For outstanding collaboration and leadership in efforts to understand the mechanism of edema formation following cerebrovascular injury (2021)
  • National Institutes of Health Fellows Award for Research Excellence
  • Jane - Nugent basic science presentation award, The Neurosurgical Society of the Virginias
  • Immunology Interest Group award - Neuroimmunology session, National Institutes of Health
  • Award for Research Excellence, Center for Nanomedicine/ Johns Hopkins University
  • Empeirikeion Scholarship for support of research fellowship

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • AANS/CNS Cerebrovascular section (2015)
  • American Association of Neurological Surgeons (2015)
  • Congress of Neurological Surgeons (2015)