Physician Profile

Simon Hanft, MD
Director, Minimally Invasive Brain Tumor Surgery
Surgical Director, Pituitary Tumor Program

Pituitary Tumor Program

I developed a focus on the treatment of brain and spine tumors while a resident at Columbia University in New York City.  I then transitioned to a dedicated surgical neuro-oncology fellowship at the University of Miami, where I gained significant experience in treating malignant brain tumors, developing clinical trials, and delivering minimally invasive therapies for both primary and metastatic tumors of the central nervous system.

Prior to my surgical training, I received my undergraduate degree from Yale University, a master’s degree from the University of Cambridge in England, and a medical degree from Stanford University.  While at Stanford, I was awarded a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) fellowship award for research into the effects of inflammation and radiation on neural stem cells.  The results from this research were published in a high impact journal on stem cell repair.

I am one of the dedicated surgical neuro-oncologists at Rutgers with expertise in the treatment of both malignant and non-malignant brain and spine tumors.  I have joined Dr. Danish in expanding the applications of laser ablation therapy, now including its use for tumors of the spine.  In addition, I work with the radiation oncologists on providing stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) to lesions of the spine.  I also have significant experience with Gamma Knife radiosurgery for all types of brain tumors.  One of my other important roles is being  part of the pituitary surgery program, as I have extensive training in minimally invasive, endoscopic approaches to tumors of the pituitary region.  This is a joint program that includes members of the ENT and endocrinology services.

The collective goal of the neurosurgical oncology program is the development and delivery of safe, minimally invasive methods of treating tumors of the brain and spine.  Towards this end, we are committed to designing the technology and research trials that will bring these cutting edge approaches to our patients.  

Clinical Expertise 

Primary and metastatic brain tumors; endoscopic approaches for pituitary tumors; awake craniotomy with mapping of motor and language function for treatment of eloquent region brain tumors; functional MRI for brain tumor surgery; Gamma Knife radiosurgery; spine stereotactic radiosurgery (SABR/SBRT); neuro-oncologic clinical trial development; and neural stem cell response to brain injury, Intramedullary spinal cord tumors, intradural spinal tumors, and metastatic tumors to the spine, brain cancer, neurosurgery

  • Jackson Hospital Systems Quality Improvement (QI) Grant for founding the Jackson Brain Tumor Bank, 2014
  • Council of State Neurosurgical Societies (CSNS) Socioeconomic Fellowship, 2011
  • Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Research Training Fellowship, 2005
  • William B. Bean Research Award, American Osler Society, 2005
  • Stanford Medical Scientist Fellowship, 2004
  • Stanford Arts & Humanities Medical Scholars Grant, 2002
  • New York Arthritis Foundation Fellowship, 2001
  • Lupus Foundation of America Fellowship, 1997
Contact Information  

To schedule a new patient appointment call 732-235-6333
For all other inquiries call 732-235-2465.

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