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Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer CenterVanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center

 
Austin  Kirschner

Austin Kirschner, M.D., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Radiation Oncologist

  • Appointments
    615-322-2555
    Physicians: 1-877-936-8422
  • Clinical Trials Information
  • Other Telephone Numbers
    Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center Radiation Oncology
    615-322-2555

    Office
    615-322-2555
  • Faxes
    Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center Radiation Oncology Fax
    615-343-3075

    Clinic Fax
    615-343-6589
  • Addresses
    Clinic
    The Vanderbilt Clinic (TVC)-Preston Research Building
    Department of Radiation Oncology, B1003
    Nashville, TN 37232-5671

    Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center Radiation Oncology
    22nd at Pierce Avenue, B1034
    Nashville, TN 37232-5671
    Website

    Office
    2220 Pierce Ave, B944 TVC
    Nashville, TN 37232
Profile

I am a physician in the department of radiation oncology. I treat several types of malignancies including genitourinary, pediatrics, lymphoma, leukemia, and cutaneous malignancies.

I also have research interests that involve the study of cancer biology with focus on developing new cancer treatments and improving therapies that are currently used.
Read more...

I am a physician in the department of radiation oncology. I treat several types of malignancies including genitourinary, pediatrics, lymphoma, leukemia, and cutaneous malignancies.

I also have research interests that involve the study of cancer biology with focus on developing new cancer treatments and improving therapies that are currently used. I focus on targeted cancer treatment as well as the combination of drug therapy with radiation therapy to enhance its effectiveness, while limiting toxicity and side effects. Ultimately, my goal is to translate my research findings into clinical trials.

Research Interests  Prostate Cancer  Development of Radiation Sensitizing Drugs  Investigation of Cancer Treatment-Resistance Mechanisms

Clinical Interests  Pediatrics  Lymphoma / Leukemia  Genitourinary Malignancies  Tremor Treatment by Stereotactic Radiosurgery

Honors/Awards  Honors Scholar, New York University  Isidore Rubiner Award for Chemistry, New York University  NASA Graduate Student Research Program Fellowship Grant, New York University  Medical Scientist Training Program, Northwestern University  Biotechnology Training Program, Northwestern University  ABR Leonard B. Holman Research Pathway, Vanderbilt University   RSNA Roentgen Resident/Fellow Research Award, Vanderbilt University  American Brachytherapy Society HDR Brachytherapy Scholarship, Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Center, Toronto, CA

Education
  • Bachelor's of Arts - New York University, NY, NY
  • Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) - Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL
  • Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) - Northwestern University, Evanston, IL
  • Internship - Northshore University Healthsystem, Evanston, IL (Affiliate of University of Chicago)
  • Residency - Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN
Research Specialty

Radiation Oncology, Cancer Biology, Mechanisms of Resistance to Cancer Therapies, Development of New Cancer Treatments

Research Description

My central theme of research is cancer biology with focus on developing new cancer treatments, especially for locally advanced and metastatic cancers that have limited treatments. I believe new cancer therapies should be targeted to specific cancer pathways to limit their toxicity and side effects, while providing effective treatment. I am a physician-scientist treating cancer patients in a department of radiation oncology and perform basic science and translational research investigating new cancer therapies and mechanisms. Ultimately, my goal is to directly translate my research findings into clinical trials with patients.

My current research focuses on prostate cancer, since there is a significant clinical deficit: nearly 30,000 men die from prostate cancer each year in the USA, making it the #2 cause of cancer death in men (world-wide: 1.1 million diagnosed and 307,000 deaths).

One research project studies a core mechanism in prostate cancer involving the oncogene PIM1 kinase, which has been implicated in numerous human malignancies, making it an important drug target for directed cancer therapy. I pursue research work that reveals PIM1-related mechanistic details in prostate cancer and demonstrates the efficacy of PIM1-directed inhibition for the treatment of prostate cancer.

Another research project focuses on resistance to current cancer-directed therapies. Drugs that improve the effectiveness hormone therapy (androgen deprivation therapy), radiation therapy, and chemotherapy are needed to treat localized high-risk and metastatic disease. I study detailed mechanisms of the androgen receptor pathway, the DNA-damage repair pathway, and other pathways toward developing new therapeutic agents.

Clinical Research Description

I am the Principal Investigator on a clinical trial for patients receiving stereotactic radiosurgery for essential tremor or Parkinsonian tremor. This treatment is a standard-of-care option for patients with severe tremor who are unable or unwilling to undergo surgical implantation of a deep brain stimulator (DBS). The trial involves questionnaire-based assessments of a patient's tremor in how it affect the patient's quality of life (subjective determination by the patient) and the severity of the tremor (objective determination by a neurologist), as well as neuropsychological measurements. The assessments are made at baseline (prior to treatment) and at intervals after the stereotactic radiosurgery procedure. For more information, please see the ClinicalTrials.gov website: http://clinicaltrials.gov/show/NCT01734122

Publications