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Kester A. Phillips, MD

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Kester Phillips, MD


Board-certified specialties granted by an ABMS Member Board. Learn more about board certification.

Clinical Interest

Areas of special interest identified by the physician or additional training completed.
Brain Cancer/Tumors, Brain Problems and Treatment, Cancer, Personalized Medicine

Years of Experience





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About Kester Phillips, MD

While working as Senior Research Technician in the lab of David Sulzer, PhD, at New York Presbyterian Medical Center, Dr. Phillips co-authored papers that provided insights to key molecular and neuroinflammatory pathways underpinning the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease. However, it was during his neuro-oncology rotation at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center during his Neurology Residency that he developed a renewed interest in the treatment of patients with brain tumors.

After his residency at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, Dr. Phillips completed his Neuro-Oncology Fellowship at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston under the guidance of Eric T. Wong, MD. He then sought and completed further fellowship training under the mentorship of David Schiff, MD, and Camilo E. Fadul, MD, co-directors of the University of Virginia Neuro-Oncology Center.

As an integral member of the Neuro-Oncology Team at Inova Schar Cancer Center, his goal is to deliver optimal team-based coordinated care to patients with primary brain tumors (such as glioblastoma, astrocytoma, oligodendroglioma, primary CNS lymphoma, meningioma, medulloblastoma, hemangioblastoma, ependymoma, pituitary tumors), brain metastases, spinal cord tumors and those affected by neurologic complications from cancer or cancer therapy. Dr. Phillips is personable, patient, connects with his patients and listens with compassion. His research interest includes participating in translational studies and clinical trials to improving therapeutic approaches in the treatment of patients with brain tumors.

A native of Brooklyn, New York, Dr. Phillips currently lives in Alexandria, Virginia with his wife. In his spare time, he enjoys cooking, gardening, playing tennis, biking, hiking, traveling, and spending time with his family.


  • Ross University School of Medicine, High Honors Distinction Diploma
  • Nubian Conservatory of Music Board of Directors
  • Beth Israel Deaconess Academy of Medical Educators
  • Society for Neuro-Oncology, Member

Peer-reviewed Publications

  1. Phillips KA, Fadul CE, Schiff D. Neurologic and Medical Management of Brain Tumors. In: Neurol Clin. Vol 36. United States: 2018 Elsevier Inc; 2018:449-466.
  2. Phillips KA, Gaughan E, Gru A, Schiff D. Regression of an intramedullary spinal cord metastasis with a checkpoint inhibitor: a case report. CNS Oncol. 2017;6(4):275-280.
  3. Zhang W, Phillips K, Wielgus AR, et al. Neuromelanin activates microglia and induces degeneration of dopaminergic neurons: implications for progression of Parkinson's disease. Neurotox Res. 2011;19(1):63-72.
  4. Mosharov EV, Larsen KE, Kanter E, et al. Interplay between cytosolic dopamine, calcium, and alpha-synuclein causes selective death of substantia nigra neurons. Neuron. 2009;62(2):218-229.
  5. Larsen KE, Benn SC, Ay I, et al. A glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF): tetanus toxin fragment C protein conjugate improves delivery of GDNF to spinal cord motor neurons in mice. In: Brain Res. Vol 1120. Netherlands2006:1-12.


A Phase 2/3 Randomized, Open-Label Study of Toca 511, a Retroviral Replicating Vector, Combined with Toca FC Versus Standard of Care in Subjects Undergoing Planned Resection for Recurrent Glioblastoma or Anaplastic Astrocytoma

Study and Targeting of Tumor Cell Invasion in Glioma Using an Organotypic Slice Culture Model


Medical Education

Ross University School of Medicine 2010


SUNY - Downstate Medical Center College of Medicine Neurology 07/01/2010 - 06/30/2014


Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center Neuro-Oncology 03/01/2015 - 05/31/2016
University of Virginia Medical Center Neuro-Oncology 07/01/2016 - 06/30/2017

Board Certification


Hospital Affliation

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