Division of Surgical Oncology & Endocrine Surgery

Punita Dhawan, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Punita Dhawan currently focuses her research on claudins, metastasis, tumorigenesis, signal transduction and trafficking, and cell death and differentiation.

Dr. Dhawan received the Bachelor of Science (1991) in Biochemistry from Delhi University, New Delhi, India and the Master of Science (1993) in Biotechnology from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India. She received the Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (1999) from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, Arkansas.

Postdoctoral Training:
Dr. Dhawan completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the Department of Cell Biology at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN in 2002.

Professional Experience:
Dr. Dhawan served as Research Instructor in the Vanderbilt Department of Cancer Biology in 2003. She then was promoted to Research Assistant Professor in the Vanderbilt Department of Surgery, Division of Surgical Oncology and is currently Assistant Professor.


  • The role of claudin-1 in colorectal cancer progression and metastasis
  • Role of NIK activation in Melanoma progression

Review some of Dr. Dhawan's abstracts on PubMed.

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