Research Summary

Dr. Pavithra Viswanath is an Associate Professor in the Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging at UCSF. She graduated with a Ph D in Biochemistry from the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore, India. The overall vision of her research is to harness insights from tumor genetics, epigenetics and biology to drive the preclinical development of novel, metabolic imaging biomarkers that will ultimately benefit patients by enabling the non-invasive assessment of tumor burden and response to therapy. In parallel, she will pinpoint metabolic vulnerabilities that can be exploited for the development of novel therapeutic and theranostic agents. Her long-term goal is to work with clinical and translational colleagues at UCSF and beyond to enable clinical translation of the imaging methods, therapeutics and theranostics that come out of her preclinical studies.

Research Funding

  • February 11, 2020 - January 31, 2025 - IMAGING TELOMERE MAINTENANCE MECHANISMS IN GLIOMAS , Principal Investigator . Sponsor: NIH, Sponsor Award ID: R01CA239288
  • September 15, 2020 - September 14, 2022 - Imaging a Hallmark of Cancer: Noninvasive Metabolic Imaging of TERT Expression in Brain Tumors , Principal Investigator . Sponsor: Department of Defense CDMRP, Sponsor Award ID: W81XWH201055315

Education

St. Xavier’s college, Goa University, Goa, India, BSc, 2000, Microbiology
Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India, MS, 2003, Biochemistry
Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India, PhD, 2007, Biochemistry

Honors & Awards

  • Career Enhancement Program Award, UCSF Brain Tumor Center SPORE, 2017
  • Career Enhancement Program Award, UCSF Brain Tumor Center SPORE, 2018
  • Inaugural Women in Neuro-oncology Basic/Translational Science Research Award, Society for Neuro-oncology, 2019
  • Margaret Hart Surbeck Travel Award, Dept. of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging, UCSF

Selected Publications

  1. Batsios G, Taglang C, Tran M, Stevers N, Barger C, Gillespie AM, Ronen SM, Costello JF, Viswanath P. Deuterium Metabolic Imaging Reports on TERT Expression and Early Response to Therapy in Cancer. Clin Cancer Res. 2022 08 15; 28(16):3526-3536.  View on PubMed
  2. Taglang C, Batsios G, Mukherjee J, Tran M, Gillespie AM, Hong D, Ronen SM, Artee Luchman H, Pieper RO, Viswanath P. Deuterium magnetic resonance spectroscopy enables noninvasive metabolic imaging of tumor burden and response to therapy in low-grade gliomas. Neuro Oncol. 2022 07 01; 24(7):1101-1112.  View on PubMed
  3. Minami N, Hong D, Stevers N, Barger CJ, Radoul M, Hong C, Chen L, Kim Y, Batsios G, Gillespie AM, Pieper RO, Costello JF, Viswanath P, Ronen SM. Imaging biomarkers of TERT or GABPB1 silencing in TERT-positive glioblastoma. Neuro Oncol. 2022 Apr 23.  View on PubMed
  4. Hong D, Batsios G, Viswanath P, Gillespie AM, Vaidya M, Larson PEZ, Ronen SM. Acquisition and quantification pipeline for in vivo hyperpolarized 13 C MR spectroscopy. Magn Reson Med. 2022 04; 87(4):1673-1687.  View on PubMed
  5. Viswanath P, Batsios G, Ayyappan V, Taglang C, Gillespie AM, Larson PEZ, Luchman HA, Costello JF, Pieper RO, Ronen SM. Metabolic imaging detects elevated glucose flux through the pentose phosphate pathway associated with TERT expression in low-grade gliomas. Neuro Oncol. 2021 09 01; 23(9):1509-1522.  View on PubMed
  6. Polvoy I, Qin H, Flavell RR, Gordon J, Viswanath P, Sriram R, Ohliger MA, Wilson DM. Deuterium Metabolic Imaging-Rediscovery of a Spectroscopic Tool. Metabolites. 2021 Aug 25; 11(9).  View on PubMed
  7. Batsios G, Taglang C, Cao P, Gillespie AM, Najac C, Subramani E, Wilson DM, Flavell RR, Larson PEZ, Ronen SM, Viswanath P. Imaging 6-Phosphogluconolactonase Activity in Brain Tumors In Vivo Using Hyperpolarized δ-[1-13C]gluconolactone. Front Oncol. 2021; 11:589570.  View on PubMed
  8. Radoul M, Hong D, Gillespie AM, Najac C, Viswanath P, Pieper RO, Costello JF, Luchman HA, Ronen SM. Early Noninvasive Metabolic Biomarkers of Mutant IDH Inhibition in Glioma. Metabolites. 2021 Feb 13; 11(2).  View on PubMed
  9. Viswanath P, Batsios G, Mukherjee J, Gillespie AM, Larson PEZ, Luchman HA, Phillips JJ, Costello JF, Pieper RO, Ronen SM. Non-invasive assessment of telomere maintenance mechanisms in brain tumors. Nat Commun. 2021 01 04; 12(1):92.  View on PubMed
  10. Zhao N, Huang Y, Wang YH, Muir RK, Chen YC, Wei J, Hooshdaran N, Viswanath P, Seo Y, Ruggero D, Renslo AR, Evans MJ. Ferronostics: Measuring Tumoral Ferrous Iron with PET to Predict Sensitivity to Iron-Targeted Cancer Therapies. J Nucl Med. 2021 07 01; 62(7):949-955.  View on PubMed
  11. Subramani E, Radoul M, Najac C, Batsios G, Molloy AR, Hong D, Gillespie AM, Santos RD, Viswanath P, Costello JF, Pieper RO, Ronen SM. Glutamate Is a Noninvasive Metabolic Biomarker of IDH1-Mutant Glioma Response to Temozolomide Treatment. Cancer Res. 2020 11 15; 80(22):5098-5108.  View on PubMed
  12. Molloy AR, Najac C, Viswanath P, Lakhani A, Subramani E, Batsios G, Radoul M, Gillespie AM, Pieper RO, Ronen SM. MR-detectable metabolic biomarkers of response to mutant IDH inhibition in low-grade glioma. Theranostics. 2020; 10(19):8757-8770.  View on PubMed
  13. Batsios G, Najac C, Cao P, Viswanath P, Subramani E, Saito Y, Gillespie AM, Yoshihara HAI, Larson P, Sando S, Ronen SM. In vivo detection of γ-glutamyl-transferase up-regulation in glioma using hyperpolarized γ-glutamyl-[1-13C]glycine. Sci Rep. 2020 04 10; 10(1):6244.  View on PubMed
  14. Batsios G, Viswanath P, Subramani E, Najac C, Gillespie AM, Santos RD, Molloy AR, Pieper RO, Ronen SM. PI3K/mTOR inhibition of IDH1 mutant glioma leads to reduced 2HG production that is associated with increased survival. Sci Rep. 2019 07 19; 9(1):10521.  View on PubMed
  15. Najac C, Radoul M, Le Page LM, Batsios G, Subramani E, Viswanath P, Gillespie AM, Ronen SM. In vivo investigation of hyperpolarized [1,3-13C2]acetoacetate as a metabolic probe in normal brain and in glioma. Sci Rep. 2019 03 04; 9(1):3402.  View on PubMed
  16. Radoul M, Najac C, Viswanath P, Mukherjee J, Kelly M, Gillespie AM, Chaumeil MM, Eriksson P, Delos Santos R, Pieper RO, Ronen SM. HDAC inhibition in glioblastoma monitored by hyperpolarized 13 C MRSI. NMR Biomed. 2019 02; 32(2):e4044.  View on PubMed
  17. Viswanath P, Radoul M, Izquierdo-Garcia JL, Luchman HA, Gregory Cairncross J, Pieper RO, Phillips JJ, Ronen SM. Mutant IDH1 gliomas downregulate phosphocholine and phosphoethanolamine synthesis in a 2-hydroxyglutarate-dependent manner. Cancer Metab. 2018; 6:3.  View on PubMed
  18. Viswanath P, Radoul M, Izquierdo-Garcia JL, Ong WQ, Luchman HA, Cairncross JG, Huang B, Pieper RO, Phillips JJ, Ronen SM. 2-Hydroxyglutarate-Mediated Autophagy of the Endoplasmic Reticulum Leads to an Unusual Downregulation of Phospholipid Biosynthesis in Mutant IDH1 Gliomas. Cancer Res. 2018 05 01; 78(9):2290-2304.  View on PubMed
  19. Mazor T, Chesnelong C, Pankov A, Jalbert LE, Hong C, Hayes J, Smirnov IV, Marshall R, Souza CF, Shen Y, Viswanath P, Noushmehr H, Ronen SM, Jones SJM, Marra MA, Cairncross JG, Perry A, Nelson SJ, Chang SM, Bollen AW, Molinaro AM, Bengtsson H, Olshen AB, Weiss S, Phillips JJ, Luchman HA, Costello JF. Clonal expansion and epigenetic reprogramming following deletion or amplification of mutant IDH1. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2017 10 03; 114(40):10743-10748.  View on PubMed
  20. Viswanath P, Morayya S, Rautela N, Sinha A. Development of a rapid and reliable assay for in vitro determination of compound cidality against the asexual stages of Plasmodium falciparum. Acta Parasitol. 2016 Dec 01; 61(4):828-835.  View on PubMed

Go to UCSF Profiles, powered by CTSI