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Aaron Andrew Ross Tobian, M.D., Ph.D.

Photo of Dr. Aaron Andrew Ross Tobian, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Pathology


Expertise: Pathology

Research Interests: Human papillomavirus (HPV); Genital herpes (HSV-2); Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV); Male circumcision; Sexually transmitted infections; Allergic transfusion reactions; Epidemiologic risk factors; Transfusion medicine; Epidemiology; Pathobiology more

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Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center
Appointment Phone: 410-955-6583

4940 Eastern Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21224 map

The Johns Hopkins Hospital (Main Entrance)
Appointment Phone: 410-955-6583

1800 Orleans St.
Sheikh Zayed Tower
Baltimore, MD 21287 map


Dr. Aaron Andrew Ross Tobian is an associate professor of pathology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

His research is largely focused on two blood transfusion-related adverse events: allergic transfusion reactions (the most common transfusion complication) and the epidemiologic risk factors of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and other sexually transmitted infections.

Dr. Tobian also serves on the faculty of the Center for Global Health, where he is leading an international study of oncogenic human papillomavirus (HPV), mucosal immune response and the risk of HIV acquisition.

He earned his medical and doctoral degrees at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. He completed both a pathology residency and a transfusion medicine fellowship at Johns Hopkins. more


  • Associate Professor of Pathology
  • Joint Appointment in Medicine



  • MD, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine (2006)


  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Pathology (2009)


  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Transfusion Medicine (2010)

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Pathology / Clinical Pathology (2009)
  • American Board of Pathology / Pathology-Transfusion Med (2013)

Research & Publications

Research Summary

Dr. Tobian’s research team is focused on two main areas of adverse events associated with transfusion:

  • Evaluation of the biological mechanisms of allergic transfusion reactions—the most common complication of blood transfusion—and methods to prevent these reactions
  • Evaluation of the epidemiologic risk factors of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections

In collaboration with Uganda’s Rakai Health Sciences Program (RHSP), Dr. Tobian’s team has established a research program to evaluate these factors.

Working closely with the RHSP, the investigators are evaluating the efficacy of male circumcision in preventing sexually transmitted infections in men and their female partners.

In addition, using foreskin mucosal tissue, they are assessing the genital cellular immune milieu associated with sexually transmitted infections to develop novel HIV prevention therapies.

Selected Publications

  1. Tobian AAR and Gray RH. "The medical benefits of male circumcision." JAMA. 2011; 306: 1479-1480.
  2. Tobian AAR, Kong X, Wawer MJ, Kigozi G, Gravitt PE, Serwadda D, Eaton K, Nalugoda F, Quinn TC, Gray RH. "Circumcision of HIV-infected men and human papillomavirus transmission to female partners: analyses of data from a randomised trial in Rakai, Uganda." Lancet Infectious Diseases. 2011; 11: 604-612.
  3. Tobian AAR, Savage WJ, Tisch DJ, Thoman S, King KE, and Ness PM. "Prevention of allergic transfusion reactions to platelets and red blood cells through plasma reduction." Transfusion. 2011; 51: 1676-1683.
  4. Tobian AAR, Serwadda D, Quinn TC, Kigozi G, Gravitt PE, Laeyendecker O, Charvat B, Ssempijja V, Riesdel M, Oliver AE, Nowak RG, Moulton LH, Chen MZ, Reynolds SJ, Wawer MJ, Gray RH. "Male circumcision for the prevention of HSV-2 and HPV infections and syphilis." N Engl J Med 2009; 360:1298-309.
  5. Tobian AAR, King KE, Ness PM. "Transfusion premedications: a growing practice not based on evidence." Transfusion 2007; 47:1089-1096.

Goel R, Ness PM, Takemoto C, King KE, Krishnamurti L, and Tobian AAR. Platelet transfusions in platelet consumptive disorders are associated with in-hospital arterial thrombotic complications and mortality. Blood. 2015; 125(9):1470-1476.

Kaufman RM, Djulbegovic B, Gernsheimer T, Kleinman S, Tinmouth AT, Capocelli KE, Cipolle MD, Cohn CS, Fung MK, Grossman BJ, Mintz PD, OMalley BA, Sesok-Pizzini DA, Shander A, Stack GE, Webert KE, Weinstein R, Welch BG, Whitman GJ, Wong EC, and Tobian AAR. Platelet transfusion: a clinical practice guideline from the AABB. Annals of Internal Medicine. 2015; 162:205-213.

Tobian AAR, Kigozi G, Manucci J, Grabowski MK, Serwadda D, Musoke R, Redd AD, Nalugoda F, Reynolds SJ, Kighoma N, Laeyendecker O, Lessler J, Gray RH, Quinn TC, Wawer MJ and the Rakai Health Sciences Program. HIV shedding from male circumcision wounds in HIV-infected men: a prospective cohort study. PLoS Medicine. 2015; 12(4): e1001820.

Grabowski MK, Gray RH, Makumbi F, Kagaayi J, Redd AD, Kigozi G, Reynolds SJ, Nalugoda F, Lutalo T, Wawer MJ, Serwadda D, Quinn TC, Tobian AAR. Use of injectable hormonal contraception and women's risk for herpes simplex virus type 2 acquisition: a prospective study of couples in Rakai, Uganda. Lancet Global Health. 2015; 3:e478-86.

Academic Affiliations & Courses

Graduate Program Affiliation


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