When I was in my twenties, my grandfather was diagnosed with cancer. At first, we were told that the tumor was very aggressive but later found out that his initial diagnosis was not entirely accurate; he actually had a rare tumor that was slower-growing, and he enjoyed eight more years with us. That experience taught me to always be on the lookout for unusual ways a patient’s disease presents — what may be unique or what doesn’t seem to fit — in order not to miss a rare diagnosis or less common clinical situation.
In my experience, most patients appreciate clear communication, a genuine sense of empathy and dedicated time to discuss their concerns, so those three things form the foundation of my approach to care. I find that the more knowledge that you as a patient have about your disease and prognosis, the more likely you are to feel a sense of control about your situation and make informed decisions that fit your priorities. I come as a representative of Fred Hutch’s entire team of doctors; we consult with each other regularly in order to find the best possible approach to your condition. While I may be the physician in charge of your care, you have access to the collective wisdom of world-renowned experts.
Area of clinical practice
Hematologic malignancies, non-malignant hematology
Acquired bone marrow failure disorders
I am a physician-scientist and hematologist who specializes in caring for patients with acquired bone marrow failure disorders, such as aplastic anemia and myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). These disorders affect stem cells that normally reside in the bone marrow and give rise to all blood cells in the body. When stem cells are damaged by drugs or chemicals or acquire genetic mutations, they are no longer able to produce healthy blood cells and may become cancerous.
The treatment options for these patients are currently very limited. In the laboratory, my colleagues and I conduct basic research to find soluble molecules in the bone marrow that can protect stem cells from injury or stress. Our long-term goal is to turn one of these molecules into a drug that can help stem cells repair damage, restore their ability to make blood cells and prevent the development of leukemia. Learn more about our research at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.
AwardsNovosibirsk Medical Institute
The Royal London Hospital, London, United Kingdom, Internal Medicine
University College Hospital, London, United Kingdom, Hematology
PhD, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom; Post-doctoral Research Fellowship, Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Boston
Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Translational Research Program Grant
This grant provides funding for innovative basic research exploring cures and improved treatment options for leukemia, lymphoma and multiple myeloma that shows promise for clinical application.
Andy Hill Research Endowment Distinguished Researcher Award
This award supports the recruitment of talented scientists to cancer research organizations in Washington state.
At Fred Hutch, you receive care from a team of providers with extensive experience in your disease. Your team includes doctors, a patient care coordinator, a registered nurse, an advanced practice provider and others, based on your needs. You also have access to experts like nutritionists, social workers, acupuncturists, psychiatrists and more who specialize in supporting people with cancer or blood disorders.
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