Phoenix, Arizona


Tokish.John@mayo.edu Clinical Profile


The research of John M. Tokish, M.D., focuses on shoulder instability, rotator cuff healing and shoulder arthroplasty. He develops new techniques to treat glenoid bone loss and a novel autograft biceps patch for rotator cuff injury.

He develops and validates new materials for use in rotator cuff augmentation. Validation takes place through animal models. First-in-human trials are on the horizon.

Focus areas

  • Distal clavicular autograft for glenoid bone loss. Dr. Tokish developed the instrumentation and delivery methods to do this procedure safely, arthroscopically and reproducibly.
  • Rotator cuff augmentation. Dr. Tokish developed a technique to transform a person's own biceps tendon into an augmentation patch. The patch provides live tenocytes to augment a diseased rotator cuff tendon.
  • Synthetic tendon augmentation patches. Dr. Tokish works with the Mayo Center for Regenerative Biotherapeutics to develop an electrospun patch for rotator cuff augmentation. This patch serves as a scaffold and delivery vehicle for growth factors to augment tendon healing and regeneration.
  • Biologic approaches to osteoarthritis. Dr. Tokish is the principal investigator for the Biologic Association Registry and Biorepository. Dr. Tokish and researchers investigate the relationship between people who respond to platelet-rich plasma injections and growth factor for knee osteoarthritis.

Significance to patient care

Osteoarthritis affects large portions of the population. Effective treatments for this condition are expensive and invasive. Dr. Tokish researches new treatment methods that are less invasive and cost less.

Current treatments for bone loss in shoulder instability have unacceptably high failure rates. Rotator cuff repair results in a high rate of retear. Other treatments still have a long way to go for optimal outcomes.

Advances in these areas would make a broad and deep impact on overall health and quality of life.

Professional highlights

  • Medical director, Arizona Coyotes, National Hockey League, 2020-present.
  • Principal investigator, Biologic Association Registry and Biorepository, 2019-present.
  • Fellowship director, Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine, Mayo Clinic, 2018-present.
  • Associate editor, Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery, 2011-present.
  • President, Arthroscopy Association of North America, 2023-2024.
  • Academic faculty of the year in military medicine, Mayo Clinic, 2020.
  • Research Educator of the Year, Mayo Clinic, 2020.
  • Residency instructor of the year in orthopedics, Mayo Clinic, 2019.
  • Member, Society of Military Orthopaedic Surgeons, 2010, 2011.


Primary Appointment

  1. Consultant, Division of Sports Medicine, Department of Orthopedic Surgery

Administrative Appointment

  1. Associate Chair of Research, Department of Orthopedic Surgery

Academic Rank

  1. Professor of Orthopedics


  1. Fellowship - Sports Medicine and Arthroscopy Steadman Hawkins Sports Medicine Foundation
  2. Residency - Orthopedic Surgery University of Arizona Health Sciences Center
  3. Internship - General Surgery University of Arizona Health Sciences Center
  4. MD University of Washington School of Medicine
  5. BS - Biochemistry United States Air Force Academy

Clinical Studies

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