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Fields named chief of surgical oncology section

Surgeon, researcher also associate program director of General Surgery Residency Program

March 5, 2019

Washington University

Ryan C. Fields, MD, a noted cancer surgeon and researcher, has been named chief of the Section of Surgical Oncology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

Fields, who joined the faculty in 2011, also is associate program director of the General Surgery Residency Program and director of resident research in the Department of Surgery.

An associate professor of surgery, Fields treats patients with liver tumors, pancreatic cancer, gastric cancer, sarcoma and melanoma at Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine. He also co-leads the Melanoma and Cutaneous Oncology Program, and the Solid Tumor Therapeutics Program.

“Dr. Fields is a truly exceptional physician-scientist,” said Timothy J. Eberlein, MD, the Ann W. Olin Distinguished Professor, Bixby Professor, head of the Department of Surgery at the School of Medicine, and director of Siteman Cancer Center. “He is an extraordinary leader and will advance our surgical oncology program to its full potential. We are thrilled to have his leadership in our department and our cancer center.”

Fields’ research is focused on the identification and treatment of patients at high risk for recurrence of cancer, and the use of cutting-edge treatments to improve survival. He runs a translational research laboratory funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). His lab focuses on the biology and genetics of cancer metastases and novel models to study cancer biology and immunobiology.

Fields came to the School of Medicine in 2003 as a general surgery resident at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. He then completed a research fellowship in surgery and immunology, and was a resident and chief resident in general surgery. He completed a surgical oncology fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

He earned his medical degree from Duke University and bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan, where he was mentored in cancer immunology and biology.

The position formerly was held by Jeffrey F. Moley, MD, who was internationally known for his contributions in thyroid cancer and surgical oncology. Moley died Oct. 15, 2017.

Washington University School of Medicine’s 1,500 faculty physicians also are the medical staff of Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals. The School of Medicine is a leader in medical research, teaching and patient care, ranking among the top 10 medical schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. Through its affiliations with Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals, the School of Medicine is linked to BJC HealthCare.

Siteman Cancer Center, ranked among the top cancer treatment centers by U.S. News & World Report, also is one of only a few cancer centers to receive the highest rating of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) – “exceptional.” Comprising the cancer research, prevention and treatment programs of Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Siteman treats adults at six locations and partners with St. Louis Children’s Hospital in the treatment of pediatric patients. Siteman is Missouri’s only NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center and the state’s only member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network. Through the Siteman Cancer Network, Siteman Cancer Center works with regional medical centers to improve the health and well-being of people and communities by expanding access to cancer prevention and control strategies, clinical studies and genomic and genetic testing, all aimed at reducing the burden of cancer.