Massachusetts General Hospital
Harvard Medical School

Boston, Massachusetts
Associate Professor of Pathology, Harvard
Co-leader of the Dana-Farber-Harvard Cancer Center Neuro-Oncology Program

Research Projects

Dr. Mario Suva’s research has provided unprecedented insights into pediatric and adult brain tumors with single-cell genomic technologies. He leverages a systems biology approach to characterize and target the cellular states that drive gliomas. He pioneered and co-directed the first studies using single-cell RNA-sequencing to comprehensively characterize the environments of pediatric and adult gliomas. His efforts have offered new insights into cancer stem cell programs, cancer cells lineages of differentiation, and the interplay between neural development and genetics in adult and pediatric brain tumors.

With NFCR support, Dr. Suva and Dr. Rakesh Jain, also at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard, are collaborating to improve the immunotherapy, CAR-T therapy for patients with the deadly brain cancer, GBM (glioblastoma). The infiltration of CAR-T cells into the tumor microenvironment is needed to improve CAR-T cell therapy. Moreover, CAR-T cells actually produce an immune-suppressive environment. Dr. Jain has shown that the anti-hypertensive agent, lorsartan, has potential to improve the delivery and efficacy of CAR-T cells against GBM in models. Dr. Suva is using his systems biology approach with single-cell genomic techniques to identify the cell-specific role of losartan in CAR-T cell-induced immunosuppression.

If proven efficacious, these results will directly inform the design of clinical trial(s) testing this novel combination to achieve durable anti-tumor responses in GBM patients.


Dr. Mario L. Suva is an Associate Professor of Pathology at Massachusetts General Hospital, a Principal Investigator and the co-leader of the computational Support Group at Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center.

Dr. Suva received his M.D. in 1999 and his Ph.D. in cancer biology in 2009 from the University of Lausanne, Switzerland. After completing a research fellowship in cancer and epigenetics at MGH and the Broad Institute in 2014, he joined the faculty at Harvard Medical School.

Dr. Suva has received 15 awards for his seminal contributions, including most recently, the MERIT Award from the National Cancer Institute (2020), Emerging Leader Award from the Mark Foundation (2020), and Neuro-Oncology Scientific Award, American Academy of Neurology (2017). Dr. Suva has a strong interest in teaching and mentoring students, residents and post-doctoral fellows beginning as a medical school student to his current faculty position at MGH and Harvard.

Our approach emphasizes a collaborative, team environment to accelerate new breakthroughs.


Rakesh K. Jain, Ph.D.
Massachusetts General Hospital & Harvard Medical School

Accelerate innovative research like this and help save cancer patient lives.

Cancer Type Areas