About Us

Principal Investigator
Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology
Vice-Chair, Research
Cancer Biology Division Chief

I am a physician-scientist who sees and treats women with locally advanced cervical cancer.  At Washington University, we maintain one of the largest repositories of tissue samples from patients with cervical cancer treated with chemoradiation. This repository includes tumor biopsies and blood samples collected from patients before and during treatment.  Tissue samples are collected and corresponding clinical outcome data from the same patient are recorded, including the results of pre and post-treatment imaging.  The goal of this tissue repository is to use patient materials, imaging results and clinical outcome data to identify and to validate predictive biomarkers that can be used in the clinic to improve outcomes for our patients. As a research scientist, I maintain my own R01 funded research laboratory.  In the laboratory, we use molecular biology, genetic engineering and small animal imaging to answer fundamental questions about tumor biology and the biology that drives tumor appearance on diagnostic images (i.e., FDG-PET and MRI).

Rashmi has been in the Schwarz lab from our first days as an independent research group.  She has been instrumental in driving our molecular biology studies of PI3K signaling and glucose metabolism in cervical cancer cells.  Currently, she is leading a collaborative project exploring the interface between glucose metabolism and redox stress with Doug Spitz’ group at the University of Iowa.

Michael completed MD/PhD training in Germany followed by a post-doctoral research fellowship with Michael Kastan (Duke University) studying DNA repair and chromatin remodeling. He joined our group in 2016 as a staff scientist and began clinical training as a radiation oncology resident in July 2017.

Learn more about Dr. Goldstein’s developing research group »

Postdoctoral Fellow

Naoshad joined the Schwarz Lab in March 2017 and comes to us with significant experience in molecular biology and animal work having previously studied obesity in melanoma and breast cancer tumor models.  He will be leading the obesity project in cervical cancer where we will use preclinical models (both in vitro and in vivo) to explore the effects of obesity on radiotherapy outcome.

Research Technician

Mike has also been part of the Schwarz lab from the beginning.  Mike runs our animal program.  His mouse microsurgery skills have been instrumental in developing our orthotopic model.  He works with everyone in the lab to make sure things run smoothly.

Graduate Student

Fiona is pursuing a PhD in the Molecular Cell Biology Program at Washington University. Fiona is leading the cervical cancer sequencing project to identify novel targets for radiation therapy resistance. She has completed targeted exome sequencing, HPV directed sequencing and RNASeq analysis of pretreatment tumor biopsies.  Mechanistic studies of candidate genes are ongoing.  Her preliminary results were recently presented at the AACR National Meeting 2017.

Holman Research Pathway Resident

Jennifer completed her MD/PhD at University of Alabama in Birmingham, where she investigated novel therapeutic strategies to exploit DNA damage responses in repair proficient cancers. She is currently a clinical resident completing training in radiation oncology, and is joining the lab as a part of the Holman Research Pathway. Jennifer’s project will examine radiation induced anti-tumor immunity in advanced-stage and metastatic ovarian cancer. Her career goals include balancing teaching, research, and clinical practice in the fields of cancer biology and oncology.

Alumni

John Floberg, MD, PhD 

Project: Exploring novel imaging strategies in cervical cancer with a focus on imaging tumor metabolic stress
Award: Holman Pathway Resident

Award:  Varex Imaging/RSNA Research Grant – Imaging Oxidative Stress in Cervical Cancer: A Potential Biomarker for Traditional and Novel Therapies;  July 2017 – July 2018, Amount:  $30,000, Role:  P.I., Mentor:  Julie Schwarz, MD, PhD

Award:  ASTRO Residents/Rellows in Radiation Oncology Research Seed Grant – Redox Imaging in Cervical Cancer as a Predictive Biomarker for Traditional and Novel Therapeutics; July 2016 – June 2017; Amount:  $25,000; Role:  P.I., Mentor:  Julie Schwarz, MD, PhD

Current position: Assistant Professor, Radiation Oncology, University of Wisconsin, Madison

 

Isabel Eng  

Project: Regulation of gylcolytic enzumes lactate dehydrogenase and pyruvate kinase in cervical cancer cells
Current position: Undergraduate student at Washington University in St. Louis

 

Xiaojing Huang, MD, PhD 

Project: Effect of Glucose Metabolism on Sensitivity to Chemoradiation in Cervical Cancer Cells

Award: Radiological Society of North America, Research Medical Student Grant #RMS1612
Current position: internship at Washington University (2017) then radiation oncology residency at Memorial Sloan Kettering, NYC (2018)

Adnan Elhammali, MD, PhD

Project: Metabolic rewiring of PI3K activated cervical cancers
Award: Radiological Society of North America, Research Medical Student Grant #RMS1408
Current Position: Resident radiation oncology MD Anderson Cancer Center, TX

 

Carl Deselm MD, PhD

Project: The role of PIKE in cervical cancer: a potential novel therapeutic target
Award: Radiological Society of North America Research Medical Student Grant #RMS1113
Current position: Assistant Professor, Radiation Oncology, Washington University School of Medicine