John Kelly

Dr. John Kelly



Assistant Professor

Cumming School of Medicine, Department of Clinical Neurosciences


Arnie Charbonneau Cancer Institute

Contact information

Web presence

Phone number

Office: 403.944.3239

Preferred method of communication

Admin Assistant

Jennifer Juvonen


Office: 403-944-3239


Educational Background

B.S. Molecular Biology, University of Calgary, 1997

Doctor of Medicine Medicine, University of Alberta, 2001

Doctor of Philosophy Neuroscience, University of Calgary, 2011


Dr. Kelly is a neurosurgeon at the Foothills Medical Centre and clinician scientist in the Arnie Charbonneau Cancer Institute and Clark H. Smith Brain Tumour Centre. Dr. Kelly completed a PhD in the lab of Dr. Sam Weiss then clinical fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre in New York. Both Dr. Kelly’s research and clinical interests focus on investigation and treatment of Glioblastoma, a highly aggressive cancer of the brain. His laboratory focuses on development of novel model systems to investigate different molecular subgroups of infiltrating gliomas. His lab has created a robust organoid model system for glioblastoma and other cancers from patient-derived samples. The lab uses this system to interrogate and understand Glioblastoma, and to identify new therapeutic strategies for this disease and other cancers.


Areas of Research

Area of Focus
  • Cancer stem cells and the cellular hierarchy within brain tumors
Summary of Research

Our research seeks to identify novel therapeutic strategies for brain cancer. Brain tumor stem cells are thought to initiate brain tumors, drive their growth, and lead to tumor recurrence following treatment. We isolate and interrogate brain tumor stem cells in order to identify novel therapeutics that target these cells and ultimately provide for new, effective treatments for brain tumors.


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