Kavita R. Dhanwada, Professor of Biology, came to Dominican University as the Founding Dean of its new College of Health Sciences, which later became the Borra College of Health Sciences (BCHS). She received her BS in Microbiology from the University of Illinois-Champaign-Urbana and her PhD from Loyola University of Chicago.

Dr. Dhanwada has over two decades of experience in higher education settings. Prior to coming to Dominican University, she was a long-time faculty member in Biology at the University of Northern Iowa. During her time there, in addition to being a faculty member, she served in various administrative positions including Department Head, Associate Dean and Associate Provost for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Graduate College. As Dean of the Borra College of Health Sciences, she oversees academic programs in Physician Assistant Studies, Nutrition and Dietetics, Health, Wellness and Medical Studies as well as the Elizabeth T. MacNeil School of Nursing. BCHS is proud to offer a range of programs that are at the undergraduate, graduate as well as post baccalaureate level.

Her research is focused on evaluating the effects of herbicides in non-target cells. The prevalence of these chemicals in agriculture-rich areas has been associated with alterations on human health. While herbicides act on plant cells, studies have indicated herbicide exposure can lead to harmful health effects in many non-target organisms, such as humans, including DNA damage, reproductive problems, endocrine effects and cancer. She is very proud that in many of her research publications, her undergraduate and graduate students have contributed as authors.

PhD, Loyola University Chicago
BS, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Research Interests 

Health effects of herbicide/pesticide exposure
Cell cycle interactions
Mechanisms of cellular transformation

Selected Publications 

Smith, A., Poole, L., Dhanwada, K. and Goonesekare, N. 2016. Identification of candidate biomarkers and cancer genes AHNAK2 and EPPK1 in pancreatic cancer. British J Medicine Med Research 18(8):1-8.

Lowry, D.M., Greiner, D., Fretheim, M., Ubben, M. and Dhanwada K.R. 2013 Mechanism of metolachlor action due to alterations in cell cycle progression. Cell Biology Toxicol. 29(4):283-291.?

Hartnett, S.P., Musah, S. and Dhanwada, K.R. 2012. Cellular effects of metolachlor exposure on human liver HepG2 cells. Chemosphere 90:1258-1266.

Powell, E.R., Fadladdin, N., Rand, A.M., Pelzer, D., Schrunk, E.M. and Dhanwada, K.R. 2012. Atrazine exposure leads to altered growth of HepG2 cells. Toxicology In Vitro 25(3):644-651.?

Selected Presentations 
Differential gene expression analysis of metolachlor treated HepG2 human liver cells., International Conference on Advances in Biosciences and Technology: Impact on Plant, Animal and Human Health (ICABT)., 2019
Acute toxicity of atrazine metabolites on human HepG2 liver cells. , International Conference on Environmental Conservation and Human Health - 10th Annual Convention of Association of Biotechnology, 2016
Analysis of protein expression in human tumor cell lines as potential biomarkers for pancreatic cancer., 29th Annual National Council of Undergraduate Research Conference., 2015
Effect of Cp2Ru2(bipy)2(DMSO)2 on growth of human liver cells., 29th Annual National Council of Undergraduate Research Conference., 2015


Dominican faculty and staff, log in to update your profile.