Adam Sowalsky, PhD

Adam Sowalsky, Ph.D.

  • Center for Cancer Research
  • National Cancer Institute
Genitourinary Malignancies Branch


Dr. Sowalsky's laboratory, the Prostate Cancer Genetics Section, conducts translational research focused on tumor evolution and treatment resistance, with a particular emphasis on developing biomarkers for predicting responses in locally-advanced prostate cancers treated by neoadjuvant hormonal therapies. By using samples from NCI clinical trials as human model systems for analysis, these correlative studies enable us to assess mechanisms of treatment resistance and develop strategies for precision therapy.

Current focus areas of research include: mechanisms of sensitivity to systemic neoadjuvant therapies in locally advanced prostate cancer prior to surgery, assessment of tumor evolution using circulating tumor DNA, and the interaction between tumor subpopulation diversity and treatment resistance.

Inquiries for postdoctoral training opportunities are always welcome.

Areas of Expertise

Tumor Evolution
Structural Genomics
Functional Transcriptomics
Tumor Progression
Mechanisms of Drug Resistance


Selected Recent Publications

Nascent Prostate Cancer Heterogeneity Drives Evolution and Resistance to Intense Hormonal Therapy

Scott Wilkinson, Huihui Ye, Fatima Karzai, Stephanie A. Harmon, Nicholas T. Terrigino, David J. VanderWeele, John R. Bright, Rayann Atway, Shana Y. Trostel, Nicole V. Carrabba, Nichelle C. Whitlock, Stephanie M. Walker, Rosina T. Lis, Houssein Abdul Sater, Brian J. Capaldo, Ravi A. Madan, James L. Gulley, Guinevere Chun, Maria J. Merino, Peter A. Pinto, Daniela C. Salles, Harsimar B. Kaur, Tamara L. Lotan, David J. Venzon, Peter L. Choyke, Baris Turkbey, William L. Dahut, Adam G. Sowalsky
European Urology. 2021.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

MEIS1 down-regulation by MYC mediates prostate cancer development through elevated HOXB13 expression and AR activity

Nichelle C. Whitlock, Shana Y. Trostel, Scott Wilkinson, Nicholas T. Terrigino, S. Thomas Hennigan, Ross Lake, Nicole V. Carrabba, Rayann Atway, Elizabeth D. Walton, Berkley E. Gryder, Brian J. Capaldo, Huihui Ye, Adam G. Sowalsky
Oncogene. 39: 2020.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

A case report of multiple primary prostate tumors with differential drug sensitivity

Scott Wilkinson, Stephanie A. Harmon, Nicholas T. Terrigino, Fatima Karzai, Peter A. Pinto, Ravi A. Madan, David J. VanderWeele, Ross Lake, Rayann Atway, John R. Bright, Nicole V. Carrabba, Shana Y. Trostel, Rosina T. Lis, Guinevere Chun, James L. Gulley, Maria J. Merino, Peter L. Choyke, Huihui Ye, William L. Dahut, Baris Turkbey, Adam G. Sowalsky
Nature Communications. 11: 1-8, 2020. [ Journal Article ]

Low abundance of circulating tumor DNA in localized prostate cancer

S. Thomas Hennigan, Shana Y. Trostel, Nicholas T. Terrigino, Olga S. Voznesensky 2, Rachel J. Schaefer, Nichelle C. Whitlock, Scott Wilkinson, Nicole V. Carrabba, Rayann Atway, Steven Shema, Ross Lake, Amalia R. Sweet, David J. Einstein, Fatima Karzai, James L. Gulley, Peter Chang, Glenn J. Bubley, Steven P. Balk, Huihui Ye, Adam G. Sowalsky
JCO Precision Oncology. 3: 1-13, 2019. [ Journal Article ]

Neoadjuvant-Intensive Androgen Deprivation Therapy Selects for Prostate Tumor Foci with Diverse Subclonal Oncogenic Alterations

Sowalsky AG, Ye H, Bhasin M, Van Allen EM, Loda M, Lis RT, Montaser-Kouhsari L, Calagua C, Ma F, Russo JW, Schaefer RJ, Voznesensky OS, Zhang Z, Bubley GJ, Montgomery B, Mostaghel EA, Nelson PS, Taplin ME, Balk SP
Cancer Research. 78: 4716-4730, 2018. [ Journal Article ]

Job Vacancies

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