Salvatore M. Zavarella, DO, FACOS

Dr. Salvatore M. Zavarella is a board-certified neurosurgeon, and is an integral part of the   neurosurgical team at LINPS. Dr. Zavarella obtained his medical degree from New York College of Osteopathic Medicine. He completed his general surgery internship and residency in Neurological Surgery at Hofstra North Shore-Long Island Jewish School of Medicine. Dr. Zavarella recently completed a prestigious fellowship at The University of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, where he obtained advanced clinical specialization in neurosurgical oncology, with a focus on the surgical treatment of primary and metastatic spine tumors and performing awake brain tumor surgery. During this time he published peer-reviewed papers on the treatment of metastatic spine tumors and was invited to write a chapter in a prominent spine textbook.

Dr. Zavarella received his Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Biomedical Sciences from the State University of New York at Buffalo where he graduated Magna Cum Laude. He received the prestigious Howard Hughes Medical Institute scholarship for international research, and from this work he was able to secure a position as Laboratory Manager at Buffalo’s Roswell Park Cancer Institute in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology.

The recipient of multiple foundation grants for research, Dr. Zavarella started a clinical trial entitled “The brain and spinal cord tissue donation program” whereby spinal cord and brain tumor patients could donate a portion of their tumor specimen, at the time of surgery, to study cell signaling mechanisms in central nervous system tumors.  From this work, Dr. Zavarella has published cell signaling mechanisms involved in the invasion of medulloblastoma and glioma cells.

Dr. Zavarella’s clinical expertise is in the treatment of complex spine tumors, adult degenerative deformity and scoliosis, herniated disc, spinal fractures, spinal stenosis, disc arthroplasty, minimally invasive spine surgery including lateral spine surgery, peripheral nerve tumor surgery, brain tumor surgery including awake surgery for metastatic and primary brain tumors.

Dr. Zavarella’s focus is to treat neurosurgical disorders with a non-operative conservative or minimally invasive approach when possible, and when surgery is indicated he is able to offer a wide range of open and minimally invasive options tailored to each patient.

PEER-REVIEWED PUBLICATIONS

“Can the spinal instability neoplastic score prior to spinal radiosurgery predict compression fractures following stereotactic spinal radiosurgery for metastatic spinal tumor?: a post hoc analysis of prospective phase II single-institution trials.” J Neurooncol. 2016.  Authors: Zavarella SM1, Lee SH1,2Tatsui CE3Ghia AJ4Amini B5Li J4Tannir NM6Brown PD4Rhines LD1.

Coniglio S, Zavarella S, Symons M. “Pak1 and Pak2 mediate tumor cell invasion through distinct signaling mechanisms.” Mol Cell Biol. 2008 Jun;28(12):4162-72.

Zavarella S, Nakada M, Belverud S, Coniglio SJ, Chan A, Mittler MA, Schneider SJ, Symons M. “Role of Rac1-regulated signaling in medulloblastoma invasion. Laboratory Investigation.” J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2009 Aug;4(2):97-104.

Zavarella S, Schulder M. “Role of iMRI in the resection of meningioma.” (in press)

Zavarella S, Schulder M. “Awake craniotomy with low field iMRI guidance.” (in progress)

 

CHAPTERS

Salvatore M Zavarella and Michael Schulder. “Intraoperative Anatomical Imaging.” Principles and Practice of Neuro-Oncology. Ed. Mehta et al. Demos Medical Publishing. NY 2011

 

ORAL PRESENTATIONS

  1. “Rac1-regulated signaling as a novel therapeutic target for medulloblastoma.” Congress of Neurological Surgeons. San Diego, CA. September 2007.
  1. “Rac1-mediated signaling in Medulloblastoma.” Feinstein Institute for Medical Research Annual Retreat. Mohonk, NY. October 2007.
  1. “Update on Brain and Spinal Cord Tissue Donation Program and Development of Novel Brain Tumor Stem Cell Isolation Protocol.” Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine Department of Neurosurgery Grand Rounds. November 2007.
  1. “Role of Rac1-mediated signaling in Medulloblastoma Invasion.” American Association of Neurological Surgeons. Chicago, IL. April 2008.
  1. “GTPase-mediated signaling in Medulloblastoma Invasion and Growth.” American Society of Pediatric Neurosurgery. April 2008.
  1. “Identification of Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factors as novel therapeutic targets for medulloblastoma invasion.” Congress of Neurological Surgeons. New Orleans, LA. October 2009.
  1. “Medulloblastoma and Invasion.” New York Neurosurgical Society Resident Research Night. New York, NY. May 2010.
  1. “Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factors and medulloblastoma invasion.” International Symposium on Pediatric Neuro-Oncology. Vienna, Austria. June 2010.
  1. “iMRI and the Meningioma.” Intraoperative Imaging Society. Zurich, Switzerland. January 2011.
  1. “Potential Medulloblastoma Therapeutic Targets.” Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine Department of Neurosurgery Graduation Symposium. June 2011
  1. “GEF’s in Medulloblastoma Invasion.” Congress of Neurological Surgery. Washington DC. October 2011.
  1. “TRIO as a novel therapeutic target for medulloblastoma.” AOA National Meeting September 2012. 1st Place Neurosurgical Resident Paper Award
  1. “Awake iMRI for dominant hemisphere lesions.” iOIS Annual Meeting. St Louis, Missouri. February 2013. 

ABSTRACTS / POSTERS

  1. Zavarella SM, Belverud S, Chan A, Steinberg B, Mittler M, Schneider S, Symons M. “Rac1-regulated signaling as a novel therapeutic target for medulloblastoma.” Congress of Neurological Surgeons. San Diego, CA. September 2007.
  1. Zavarella SM, Coniglio S, Belverud S, Mittler M, Schneider S, Symons M. “Rac1-mediated signaling in Medulloblastoma.” Feinstein Institute for Medical Research Annual Retreat. Mohonk, NY. October 2007.
  1. Zavarella SM, Belverud S, Chan A, Steinberg B, Mittler M, Schneider S, Symons M. “Rac1-regulated signaling as a novel therapeutic target for medulloblastoma.” Society for Neuro-Oncology. San Antonio, TX. November 2007.
  1. Zavarella SM, Coniglio S, Belverud S, Mittler M, Schneider S, Symons M. “Role of Rac1-mediated signaling in Medulloblastoma Invasion.” American Association of Neurological Surgeons. Chicago, IL. April 2008.
  1. Zavarella SM, Coniglio S, Belverud S, Mittler M, Schneider S, Symons M. “Role of GTPase-mediated signaling in Medulloblastoma Invasion and Growth.” American Society of Pediatric Neurosurgery. April 2008.
  1. Zavarella SM, Belverud S, Mittler M, Schneider S, Symons M. “Identification of Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factors as novel therapeutic targets for medulloblastoma invasion.” Congress of Neurological Surgeons. New Orleans, LA. October 2009.
  1. Zavarella SM, Latefi A, Schulder M. “Intraoperative MRI for Surgery of Intracranial Meningiomas.” Joint Meeting of the Society for Neuro-Oncology and the AANS/CNS Section on Tumors. New Orleans, LA. October 2009.
  1. Zavarella SM, Quinn J, Latefi A, Schulder M. “Stereotactic Brain Biopsy with Low Field Intraoperative MRI.” Joint Meeting of the Society for Neuro-Oncology and the AANS/CNS Section on Tumors. New Orleans, LA. October 2009.
  1. Zavarella SM, Schneider, S, Symons, M. “Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factors and medulloblastoma invasion.” International Symposium on Pediatric Neuro-Oncology. Vienna, Austria. June 2010.
  1.  Zavarella SM, Schulder, M. “iMRI and the Meningioma.” Intraoperative Imaging Society. Zurich, Switzerland. January 2011.

11.   Zavarella SM, Didier S, Mittler M, Schneider S, and Symons M.                  “GEF’s in    Medulloblastoma    Invasion.” Congress of Neurological                Surgery. Washington DC. October 2011.

  1. Schuler M, Zavarella SM, Nardi D, Schaffer S. “Combined brain mapping and Intraoperative MRI for brain tumor resection.” Neuro Oncol. Nov 2011; 13(Suppl 3): iii154-iii163.
  1. Zavarella SM, Schulder M. “Awake Low-field iMRI for dominant hemisphere lesions.” iOIS Annual Meeting. St Louis, Missouri. February 2013.
  1. Zavarella SM, Schulder M. “Intraoperative MRI guidance for laser interstitial thermal therapy.” European Association of Neurosurgical Societies Annual Meeting. Tel Aviv, Israel. November 2013.
  1. Petrizzo R, Zavarella SM, Jarchin L, Nardi D, Schaffer S, Schulder M. “Combined brain mapping and low-field intraoperative MRI for brain tumor resection.” American College of Physicians Annual Meeting. Orlando, FL. April 2014.
  1. Zavarella SM, Entz L, Groppe D, Stream S, Kingsley P, Schaffer S, Mehta A. “Predicting of electrical stimulation mapping results with functional MRI: What is the margin of clearance?” Congress of Neurological Surgery. Boston, MA. October 2014.
  1. Zavarella SM, Gandhi S, Nardi D, Schaffer S, Schulder M. “Combined awake brain mapping and low-field intraoperative MRI for brian tumor resection.” Society for Neuro-oncology. Miami, FL. November 2014

 

RESEARCH

“Brain and Spinal Cord Tissue Donation Program.” IRB approved clinical trial and GCRC funded. Over 300 patients and 320 brain/spinal cord tumor specimens were enrolled and demographic data chronicled from 2006-present. Brain Tumor Stem Cell Isolation Protocol Developed for Medulloblastoma and Glioblastoma

Initiated the grant-funded Pediatric Brain Tumor Research Program in Laboratory for Brain Tumor Biology at Feinstein Institute for Medical Research in Department of Oncology and Cell Biology.

Primary Investigator: Marc Symons, PhD

2005-Present