Research Summary

Dr. Dhawan is an assistant professor in Medical Oncology and specializes in the prevention and treatment of hereditary cancer syndromes in the Center for BRCA Research as well as the development of Phase 1 clinical trials for patient with advanced cancers through the Experimental Therapeutics program. She joined UCSF for fellowship in 2014 and remains on as a faculty member. Her research interests are focused on tumors with mutations in homologous recombination, novel drug targets and preventative measures for inherited cancer predisposition syndromes.


University of California, San Diego, BS, 2006, Bioengineering
University of California, San Diego, MD, 2011, Medicine
Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, Residency, 2014, Internal Medicine
University of California, San Francisco Fellowship, 2017, Hematology/Oncology

Honors & Awards

  • 2002 - 2006
    Jacobs Scholarship, Jacobs School of Engineering, UC San Diego
  • 2006 - 2010
    Medical Scholars Program, UC San Diego
  • 2006
    Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society, UC San Diego
  • 2006
    Magna Cum Laude, UC San Diego
  • 2013
    Duke Faculty Resident Research Grant, Duke University
  • 2015 - 2016
    Simon Strauss Foundation Cancer Center Award, UC San Francisco
  • 2016 - 2017
    Sean Quinlan Career Development Award, UC San Francisco
  • 2017 - 2018
    Rosenberg Prostate Cancer Research Fellow, UC San Francisco
  • 2017 - 2019
    BRCA Young Investigator Award, BRCA Foundation

Selected Publications

  1. Kwon DH, Chou J, Yip SM, Reimers MA, Zhang L, Wright F, Dhawan MS, Borno HT, Desai A, Aggarwal RR, Wyatt AW, Small EJ, Alva AS, Chi KN, Feng FY, Koshkin VS. Differential treatment outcomes in BRCA1/2-, CDK12-, and ATM-mutated metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. Cancer. 2021 Jun 15; 127(12):1965-1973.  View on PubMed
  2. Szymaniak BM, Facchini LA, Giri VN, Antonarakis ES, Beer TM, Carlo MI, Danila DC, Dhawan M, George D, Graff JN, Gupta S, Heath E, Higano CS, Liu G, Molina AM, Paller CJ, Patnaik A, Petrylak DP, Reichert Z, Rettig MB, Ryan CJ, Taplin ME, Vinson J, Whang YE, Morgans AK, Cheng HH, McKay RR. Practical Considerations and Challenges for Germline Genetic Testing in Patients With Prostate Cancer: Recommendations From the Germline Genetics Working Group of the PCCTC. JCO Oncol Pract. 2020 12; 16(12):811-819.  View on PubMed
  3. Terranova-Barberio M, Pawlowska N, Dhawan M, Moasser M, Chien AJ, Melisko ME, Rugo H, Rahimi R, Deal T, Daud A, Rosenblum MD, Thomas S, Munster PN. Exhausted T cell signature predicts immunotherapy response in ER-positive breast cancer. Nat Commun. 2020 07 17; 11(1):3584.  View on PubMed
  4. Reimers MA, Yip SM, Zhang L, Cieslik M, Dhawan M, Montgomery B, Wyatt AW, Chi KN, Small EJ, Chinnaiyan AM, Alva AS, Feng FY, Chou J. Clinical Outcomes in Cyclin-dependent Kinase 12 Mutant Advanced Prostate Cancer. Eur Urol. 2020 03; 77(3):333-341.  View on PubMed
  5. Dhawan M, Ryan CJ. BRCAness and prostate cancer: diagnostic and therapeutic considerations. Prostate Cancer Prostatic Dis. 2018 11; 21(4):488-498.  View on PubMed
  6. Bartelink IH, Prideaux B, Krings G, Wilmes L, Lee PRE, Bo P, Hann B, Coppé JP, Heditsian D, Swigart-Brown L, Jones EF, Magnitsky S, Keizer RJ, de Vries N, Rosing H, Pawlowska N, Thomas S, Dhawan M, Aggarwal R, Munster PN, Esserman LJ, Ruan W, Wu AHB, Yee D, Dartois V, Savic RM, Wolf DM, van 't Veer L. Heterogeneous drug penetrance of veliparib and carboplatin measured in triple negative breast tumors. Breast Cancer Res. 2017 Sep 11; 19(1):107.  View on PubMed
  7. Dhawan MS, Bartelink IH, Aggarwal RR, Leng J, Zhang JZ, Pawlowska N, Terranova-Barberio M, Grabowsky JA, Gewitz A, Chien AJ, Moasser M, Kelley RK, Maktabi T, Thomas S, Munster PN. Differential Toxicity in Patients with and without DNA Repair Mutations: Phase I Study of Carboplatin and Talazoparib in Advanced Solid Tumors. Clin Cancer Res. 2017 Nov 01; 23(21):6400-6410.  View on PubMed
  8. Aggarwal R, Bryce A, Ryan CJ, Harzstark A, Derleth C, Kim W, Friedlander T, Lin AM, Rodvelt-Bagchi T, Dhawan M, Zhang L, Lee M, Siebeneck E, Hough J, Small EJ. A multicenter phase I study of cabazitaxel, mitoxantrone, and prednisone for chemotherapy-naïve patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer: A department of defense prostate cancer clinical trials consortium study. Urol Oncol. 2017 04; 35(4):149.e7-149.e13.  View on PubMed
  9. Dhawan M, Ryan CJ. Utility of novel androgen receptor therapies in the real world: A nuanced approach. Urol Oncol. 2016 08; 34(8):340-7.  View on PubMed
  10. Dhawan M, Ryan CJ, Ashworth A. DNA Repair Deficiency Is Common in Advanced Prostate Cancer: New Therapeutic Opportunities. Oncologist. 2016 08; 21(8):940-5.  View on PubMed
  11. Zhang T, Dhawan MS, Healy P, George DJ, Harrison MR, Oldan J, Chin B, Armstrong AJ. Exploring the Clinical Benefit of Docetaxel or Enzalutamide After Disease Progression During Abiraterone Acetate and Prednisone Treatment in Men With Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer. Clin Genitourin Cancer. 2015 Aug; 13(4):392-399.  View on PubMed
  12. Robinson ES, Khankin EV, Choueiri TK, Dhawan MS, Rogers MJ, Karumanchi SA, Humphreys BD. Suppression of the nitric oxide pathway in metastatic renal cell carcinoma patients receiving vascular endothelial growth factor-signaling inhibitors. Hypertension. 2010 Dec; 56(6):1131-6.  View on PubMed
  13. Regev GJ, Haloman S, Chen L, Dhawan M, Lee YP, Garfin SR, Kim CW. Incidence and prevention of intervertebral cage overhang with minimally invasive lateral approach fusions. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2010 Jun 15; 35(14):1406-11.  View on PubMed
  14. Regev GJ, Chen L, Dhawan M, Lee YP, Garfin SR, Kim CW. Morphometric analysis of the ventral nerve roots and retroperitoneal vessels with respect to the minimally invasive lateral approach in normal and deformed spines. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2009 May 20; 34(12):1330-5.  View on PubMed

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