Tom Mikkelsen

Tom Mikkelsen, MD

medical group

Specialties: Neurology

Services: Brain Tumors

Board Certification and Education

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology - Neurology


  • University of Calgary, 1983

Residencies & Internships

  • Montreal Neurological Hospital & Institute, Neurology, 1988
  • Foothills Medical Center, 1985


  • Ludwig Institute For Cancer Research, Cellular and Molecular Biology, NY, 1992

About Me

Member of the Henry Ford Cancer Institute

Neurological Surgery


I specialize in neuro-oncology, brain tumors and clinical trials.

Medical Director, Precision Medicine Program & Clinical Trials

Biographical Statement:
Internationally recognized in the neuro-oncology and precision medicine areas, Dr. Mikkelsen received his MD from the University of Calgary, Canada and completed clinical training in neurology at the Montreal Neurologic Institute. Following this, he did post-doctoral training in brain tumor cellular and molecular biology at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research in Montreal and then in La Jolla, California. He has had an accomplished 23-year career with Henry Ford Health System, where he co-founded and managed the Hermelin Brain Tumor Center (HBTC), including the brain tumor biorepository - an internationally recognized resource for biospecimens and the clinical annotation associated with them, for more than 20 years.

He has a long track record in clinical trials for both cancer and neurologic disorders, including as president and chief scientific officer at the Ontario Brain Institute. Dr. Mikkelsen currently serves as the medical director of the Henry Ford Health Precision Medicine and Clinical Trials Program.

The internet age has been empowering for many patients dealing with a new diagnosis of a brain tumor. However, there is way too much unfiltered content and it takes a real multidisciplinary team to partner with a patient and their family to formulate the best plan of care. We have access to many novel and innovative approaches to treatment to compliment current state-of-the-art treatment. The goal, of course, is to maximize the quality of a person's life, despite the challenges. This means emotionally, mentally and physically. I pride myself on engaging a patient, the team and moving ahead in the most promising way possible.

Research Interests
Hermelin Brain Tumor Bank and Personalized Brain Tumor Therapy: HBTC is a leader in the understanding of the genetics of brain tumors, and in the development of therapies matched to each patient's brain tumor genetics for the best chance at recovery. The Center is a major contributor to The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) - a national cooperative of major academic medical centers sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, responsible for identifying certain survival-related genes. The data generated from the TCGA and the 1000 tumor tissues in the tumor bank are a major resource for each of the HBTC's research laboratories. HBTC resources constitute some 40% of resources in the national TCGA program.

Brain Tumor Neuro-imaging: Dr. Mikkelsen's laboratory has collaborated extensively with small animal imaging, clinical neuroradiology, and image analysis for pre-clinical and clinical brain tumor studies, primarily using perfusion CT and multiple MRI techniques. The long-term goal is to validate imaging biomarkers as measures of therapeutic response toward targeted therapies.

Dr. Mikkelsen works closely with Dr. Tobias Walbert and Dr. Jim Snyder, neuro-oncology colleagues, with clinical research interests focus on outcomes research.

Research Web Links
American Brain Tumor Association
National Brain Tumor Foundation
National Cancer Institute
New Approaches to Brain Tumor Therapy

Award and Honors

  • Additional (Examined) Certification, United Council of Neurologic Subspecialties of NeuroOncology (2012)
  • Author of 175 publications and co-editor of a text book on brain tumor invasion
  • “Top Doc”, HOUR Detroit (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 & 2007)
  • Best Doctors for Oncology, HOUR Detroit (2007 and 2008)




Blog Posts
  • What Is A Clinical Trial?

    Clinical trials move us one step closer to knowing what medical treatments and interventions work and which ones do not. Read the FAQs about clinical trials here.

View All Blog Posts


Henry Ford Cancer Institute - Detroit
2800 W Grand Blvd
Detroit, MI 48202
Henry Ford Hospital
2799 W Grand Blvd
Detroit, MI 48202

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