Aaron Clark MD, PhD


Assistant Professor of Neurological Surgery

Member, UCSF Spine Center

Dr. Aaron Clark joined the Department of Neurological Surgery in 2015. The main focus of his practice is to provide minimally invasive outpatient procedures for lumbar/cervical herniated discs and lumbar/cervical stenosis at UCSF’s Mt. Zion location. Minimally invasive spine procedures are associated with shorter recovery and less postoperative pain than standard surgeries, and almost all patients can return home the same day. Dr. Clark also specializes in minimally invasive lumbar fusion surgery, adult spinal deformity surgery, and spinal oncology.

Dr. Clark earned his medical and postdoctoral degrees from the Medical College of Virginia. He is a graduate of UCSF’s neurological surgery residency program, where he developed his interest in spine surgery and began publishing research on spinal oncology, spine biomechanics, spinal deformity, and intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring during spine surgery. In 2014 he completeda fellowship in minimally invasive spine surgery at the Semmes-Murphey Neurologic and Spine Institute in Memphis, Tennessee under the mentorship of Kevin Foley, MD, a pioneer in minimally invasive spine surgery.

Selected Professional Membership and Appointments

American Association of Neurological Surgeons
Congress of Neurological Surgeons
California Association of Neurological Surgeons

Selected Honors and Awards

2013: Harold Rosegay Young Investigator Award, San Francisco Neurological Society
2012: Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award, National Cancer Institute
2011: 1st place E-poster, American Association of Neurological Surgeons Annual Meeting

Selected Recent Publications

Saigal R, Clark AJ, Scheer JK, Smith JS, Bess S, Mummaneni PV, McCarthy IM, Hart RA, Kebaish KM, Klineberg EO, Deviren V, Schwab F, Shaffrey CI, Ames CP. Adult Deformity Surgery (ASD) Patients Recall Fewer than 50% of the Risks Discussed in the Informed Consent Process Preoperatively and the Recall Rate Worsens Significantly in the Postoperative Period. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2015: DOI: 10.1097/BRS.0000000000000964

Sun MZ, Oh T, Ivan ME, Clark AJ, Safaee M, Sayegh ET, Kaur G, Parsa AT, Bloch O. Survival impact of time to initiation of chemoradiotherapy after resection of newly diagnosed glioblastoma. J Neurosurg. 2015: DOI: 10.3171/2014.9.JNS14193

Osorio JA, Clark AJ, Safaee M, Tate MC, Aghi MK, Parsa A, McDermott MW. Intraoperative conversion from endoscopic to open trans-cortical-transventricular removal of colloid cysts as a salvage procedure. Cureus. 2015:7(2):e247.DOI:10.7759/cureus.247

Safaee M, Fakurnejad S, Bloch O, Clark AJ, Ivan ME, Sun MZ, Oh T, Phillips JJ, Parsa AT. Proportional Upregulation of CD97 Isoforms in Glioblastoma and Glioblastoma-Derived Brain Tumor Initiating Cells. PLoS One. 2015: DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0111532

Scheer JK, Smith JS, Clark AJ, Lafage V, Kim HJ, Rolston JD, Eastlack R, Hart RA, Protopsaltis TS, Kelly MP, Kebaish K, Gupta M, Klineberg E, Hostin R, Shaffrey CI, Schwab F, Ames CP; the International Spine Study Group. Comprehensive study of back and leg pain improvements after adult spinal deformity surgery: analysis of 421 patients with 2-year follow-up and of the impact of the surgery on treatment satisfaction. J Neurosurg Spine. 2015: 10.3171/2014.10.SPINE14475

Clark AJ, Safaee M, Oh T, Ivan ME, Parimi V, Ozawa T, James CD, Bloch O, Parsa AT. Luciferase expression does not alter immunogenicity or in vivo growth of GL261 murine glioma cells. J Transl Med. 2014:12(1):345

Lau D, Clark AJ, Scheer JK, Daubs MD, Coe JD, Paonessa KJ, LaGrone MO, Kasten MD, Amaral RA, Trobisch PD, Lee JH, Fabris-Monterumici D, Anand N, Cree AK, Hart RA, Hey LA, Ames CP; the SRS Adult Spinal Deformity Committee. Proximal Junctional Kyphosis and Failure Following Spinal Deformity Surgery: A Systematic Review of the Literature as a Background to Classification Development. Spine. 2014: 39(25):2093-102

Ivan ME, Safaee M, Oh T, Clark AJ, Sun MZ, Kim J, Bloch O, Jahangiri A, Phillips JJ, Aghi MK, Parsa AT. Epidermal growth factor-like module containing mucin-like hormone receptor 2 expression in gliomas. J Neurooncol. 2014:121(1):53-61

Oh T, Ivan ME, Sun MZ, Safaee M, Fakurnejad S, Clark AJ, Sayegh ET, Bloch O, Parsa AT. PI3K pathway inhibitors: potential prospects as adjuncts to vaccine immunotherapy for glioblastoma. Immunotherapy. 2014:6(6):737-53

Sun MZ, Ivan ME, Oh MC, Delance AR, Clark AJ, Safaee M, Oh T, Kaur G, Molinaro A, Gupta N, Parsa AT. Effects of adjuvant chemotherapy and radiation on overall survival in children with choroid plexus carcinoma. J Neurooncol. 2014: 120(2):353-60

Clark AJ, Garcia RM, Keefe MK, Koski TR, Rosner MK, Smith JS, Cheng JS, Shaffrey CI, McCormick PC, Ames CP and the ISSG. Results of the AANS membership survey of adult spinal deformity knowledge: impact of training, practice experience and assessment of potential areas for improved education. J Neurosurg Spine. 2014: 21(4):640-7

Oh T, Fakurnejad S, Sayegh ET, Clark AJ, Ivan ME, Sun MZ, Safaee M, Bloch O, James CD, Parsa AT. Immunocompetent murine models for the study of glioblastoma immunotherapy. J Transl Med. 2014: 29;12(1):107

Clark AJ, Tang JA, Leasure JM, Ivan ME, Kondrashov D, Buckley JM, Deviren V, Ames CP. Gait simulating fatigue loading analysis and sagittal alignment failure of spinal pelvic reconstruction after total sacrectomy: comparison of 3 technique. Laboratory investigation. J Neurosurg Spine. 2014: 20(4):364-70

Sparrey CJ, Bailey JF, Safaee M, Clark AJ, Ames CP. Etiology of lumbar lordosis and its pathophysiology: A review of the evolution of lumbar lordosis, and the mechanics and biology of lumbar degeneration. Neurosurg Focus. 2014: 36(5):E1

Clark AJ, Rutkowski M J, Mcdermott M. Securing Cranial Horizontal-Vertical Valve in Proper Orientation for Use in Ventriculoperitoneal Shunting: Technical Note. Cureus 2014:6(1): e158. doi:10.7759/cureus.158

Abla AA, Clark AJ, Lawton ML. Resection of pontine cavernous malformation through the pontomedullary sulcus. Neurosurg Focus. 2014:36(1 Suppl):1.

Sun MZ, Ivan ME, Clark AJ, Oh MC, Delance AR, Oh T, Safaee M, Kaur G, Bloch O, Molinaro A, Gupta N, Parsa AT. Gross total resection improves overall survival in children with choroid plexus carcinoma. J Neurooncol. 2014:116(1):179-85

Safaee M, Clark AJ, Ivan ME, Oh MC, Bloch O, Sun MZ, Oh T, Parsa AT. CD97 is a multifunctional leukocyte receptor with distinct roles in human cancers (Review). Int J Oncol. 2013: 43(5):1343-50

Safaee M, Clark AJ, Tihan T, Parsa AT, Bloch O. Falcine and parasagittal chondrosarcomas: case series and review of the literature. J Clin Neurosci. 2013:20(9):1232-6

Sun MZ, Kim JM, Oh MC, Safaee M, Kaur G, Clark AJ, Bloch O, Ivan ME, Kaur R, Oh T, Fouse SD, Phillips JJ, Berger MS, Parsa AT. Na+/K+-ATPase β2-subunit (AMOG) expression abrogates invasion of glioblastoma-derived brain tumor-initiating cells. Neuro Oncol. 2013:15(11):1518-31.

Clark AJ, Ziewacz JE, Safaee M, Lyon R, Chou D, Weinstein PR, Ames CP, Clark III JP, Mummaneni PV. Intraoperative neuromonitoring with MEPs and prediction of postoperative neurological deficits in patients undergoing surgery for cervical and cervicothoracic myelopathy. Neurosurg Focus. 2013:35(1):E7

Safaee M, Clark AJ, Ivan ME, Oh MC, Bloch OG, Kaur G, Sun MZ, Kim JM, Berger MS, Parsa AT. CD97 confers an invasive glioma cell phenotype associated with decreased survival of glioblastoma patients. PLoS One. 2013:8(4):e62765

*Jahangiri A,*Clark AJ, Han SJ, Kunwar S, Blevins, Jr., LS, Aghi MK. Socioeconomic factors associated with pituitary apoplexy. J Neurosurg. 2013:119(6):1432-6

Feldman WB, Clark AJ, Safaee M, Ames CP, Parsa AT. Tumor Control after Surgery for Spinal Myxopapillary Ependymomas: Distinct Outcomes in Adults and Children. J Neurosurg Spine. 2013: 19(4):471-6

Safaee M, Clark AJ, Bloch O, Oh MC, Singh A, Auguste KI, Gupta N, McDermott MW, Aghi MK, Berger MS, Parsa AT. Surgical outcomes in choroid plexus papillomas: an institutional experience. J Neurooncol. 2013:113(1):117-25

DeLance AR, Safaee M, Oh MC, Clark AJ, Kaur G, Sun MZ, Bollen AW, Phillips JJ, Parsa AT. Tuberculoma of the central nervous system. J Clin Neurosci. 2013:20(10):1333-41

Clark AJ, Jahangiri A, Garcia RM, George J, Sughrue ME, McDermott MW, El-Sayed I, Aghi MK. Endoscopic surgery for tuberculum sellae meningiomas: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Neurosurg Rev. 2013:36(3):349-59

Clark AJ, Cage TA, Aranda D, Parsa AT, Sun PP, Auguste KI, Gupta N. A systematic review of the results of surgery and radiotherapy on tumor control for pediatric craniopharyngioma. Childs Nerv Syst 2013:29(2):231-8

Cage TA, Clark AJ, Aranda D, Gupta N, Sun PP, Parsa AT, Auguste KI. A Systematic Review of Treatment Outcomes of Pediatric Intracranial Ependymomas. J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2013:11(6):673-81

Clark AJ, Cage TA, Aranda D, Parsa AT, Auguste KI, Gupta N. Treatment related morbidity and the management of pediatric craniopharyngioma. J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2012:10(4):293-301

Tate M, Clark AJ, McDermott MW. The “Watering Can” technique for prevention of postoperative epidural hematoma recurrence. Cureus. 2012:4(11): e65. (DOI:10.7759/cureus.65)

Clark AJ, Butowski NA, Chang SM, Prados MD, Clarke JL, McDermott MW, Parsa AT, Berger MS, Aghi MK. Neurosurgical management and prognosis of patients with glioblastoma that progress during bevacizumab treatment. Neurosurgery. 2012:70(2):361-70

Clark AJ, Kuperman R, Auguste KI, Sun PP. Intractable episodic bradycardia resulting from progressive lead traction in an epileptic child with a vagus nerve stimulator: Case report of a delayed complication. J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2012:9(4):389-93

Ivan ME, Cheng JS, Gurvinder K, Sughrue ME, Clark A, Kane AJ, Aranda D, McDermott M, Barani IJ, Parsa AT. Association of morbidity with extent of resection and cavernous sinus invasion in sphenoid wing meningiomas. J Neurol Surg B Skull Base. 2012;73(1):76-83. doi: 10.1055/s-0032-1304562.

Clark AJ, Auguste KI, Sun PP. Cervical spinal stenosis and sports-related cervical cord neurapraxia. Neurosurg Focus. 2011:31(5):E7

Han SJ, Clark AJ, Ivan ME, Parsa AT, Perry A. Pathology of pineal parenchymal tumors. Neurosurg Clin N Am. 2011;22(3):335-40

Clark AJ, Sughrue ME, Aranda D, Parsa AT. Contemporary Management of Pineocytoma. Neurosurg Clin N Am. 2011:22(3):403-7

Ivan ME, Sughrue ME, Clark AJ, Kane AJ, Aranda D, Barani IJ, Parsa AT. A meta-analysis of tumor control rates and treatment-related morbidity for patients with glomus jugulare tumors. J Neurosurg 2011;114(5):1299-305

Clark AJ, Butowski NA, Chang SM, Prados MD, Clarke J, Polley M-YC, Sughrue ME, McDermott MW, Parsa AT, Berger MS, Aghi MK. Impact of Bevacizumab Chemotherapy on Craniotomy Wound Healing. J Neurosurg 2011;114(6):1609-16

Clark AJ, Lu DC, Richardson RM, Tihan T, Parsa, AT, Chou D, Barbaro NM, Kunwar S, Weinstein PR, Lawton, MT, Berger MS, McDermott MW. Temporary arterial occlusion in the operative management of spinal hemangioblastomas. World Neurosurgery 2010;74(1):200-205

Chang EF, Clark A, Smith JS, Polley MY, Chang SM, Barbaro NM, Parsa AT, McDermott MW, Berger MS. Functional mapping-guided resection of low-grade gliomas in eloquent areas of the brain: improvement of long-term survival. J Neurosurg. 2011;114(3):566-73

Sughrue ME, Yang I, Kane AJ, Fang S, Clark AJ, Aranda D, Barani IJ, Parsa AT. Endocrinologic, neurologic, and visual morbidity after treatment for craniopharyngioma. J Neurooncol. 2011;101(3):463-76

Chen MY, Clark AJ, Chan DC, Ware JL, Holt SE, Chidambaram A, Fillmore HL, Broaddus WC. Wilms' tumor 1 silencing decreases the viability and chemoresistance of glioblastoma cells in vitro: a potential role for IGF-1R de-repression. J Neurooncol. 2011;103(1):87-102

Clark AJ, Sughrue ME, Ivan ME, Aranda D, Rutkowski MJ, Kane AJ, Chang S, Parsa AT. Factors influencing overall survival rates for patients with pineocytoma. J Neurooncol 2010;100(2):255-60

Clark AJ, Ivan ME, Sughrue ME, Yang I, Aranda D, Han SJ, Kane AJ, Parsa AT. Tumor control after surgery and radiotherapy for pineocytoma. J Neurosurg 2010;113(2):319-24.

Clark AJ, Lee K, Broaddus WC, Martin MJ, Ghatak NR, Grossman CE, Baker S Jr, Baykal A. Primary brain T-cell lymphoma of the lymphoblastic type presenting as altered mental status. Acta Neurochir (Wien) 2010;152(1):163-8.

Clark AJ, Ware JL, Chen MY, Graf MR, Van Meter TE, Dos Santos WG, Fillmore HL, Broaddus WC. Effect of WT1 gene silencing on the tumorigenicity of human glioblastoma multiforme cells. J Neurosurg 2010;112(1):18-25.

Chang EF*, Clark A*, Jensen RL, Bernstein M, Guha A, Carrabba G, Mukhopadhyay D, Kim W, Liau LM, Chang SM, Smith JS, Berger MS, McDermott MW. Multiinstitutional validation of the University of California at San Francisco Low-Grade Glioma Prognostic Scoring System. Clinical article. J Neurosurg 2009;111(2):203-10.

Clark AJ, Dos Santos WG, McCready J, Chen MY, Van Meter TE, Ware JL, Wolber SB, Fillmore H, Broaddus WC. Wilms tumor 1 expression in malignant gliomas and correlation of +KTS isoforms with p53 status. J Neurosurg 2007;107(3):586-92. 

Clark AJ, Chan DC, Chen MY, Fillmore H, Dos Santos WG, Van Meter TE, Graf MR, Broaddus WC. Down-regulation of Wilms' tumor 1 expression in glioblastoma cells increases radiosensitivity independently of p53. J Neurooncol 2007;83(2):163-72. 

Li HL, Suzuki J, Bayna E, Zhang FM, Dalle Molle E, Clark A, Engler RL, Lew WY. Lipopolysaccharide induces apoptosis in adult rat ventricular myocytes via cardiac AT(1) receptors. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 2002;283(2):H461-7.