Rodney Stewart, PhD, MPhil

Research Interests

  • Childhood Cancer
  • Embryology
  • Brain Tumors
  • Neuroblastoma
  • Neural Crest Development
  • Zebrafish
  • Cell Migration
  • Cell Survival
  • Melanoma


Lab Website


  • English

Academic Information

  • Departments: Oncological Sciences - Research Associate Professor
  • Cancer Center Programs: Cell Response & Regulation

Academic Office Information

  • 801-587-5567
  • Huntsman Cancer Institute
    Dept. Oncological Sciences
    2000 Circle of Hope, Room: 3245
    Salt Lake City, UT 84112

Academic Bio

Rodney Stewart, PhD, is an assistant professor in the Department of Oncological Sciences at the University of Utah and a Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) investigator. He is a member of the Cell Response and Regulation Program.Stewart's research focuses on cell migration and cancer metastasis mechanisms using the zebrafish model. He is also interested in the discovery of new therapeutic targets in melanoma and neuroblastoma, cancers of the neural crest.Before joining HCI, Stewart was a research fellow in the Department of Pediatric Oncology at Harvard Medical School, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where he also served as an instructor in pediatric oncology. He earned a PhD from Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut.

Education History

Type School Degree
Postdoctoral Fellowship Dana-Farber Cancer Institute/Harvard Medical School
Cancer and Developmental Biology
Postdoctoral Fellow
Doctoral Training Yale University
Graduate Training Yale University
Undergraduate University of Melbourne
B.Sc. (Hons)

Global Impact

Education History

Type School Degree Country
Undergraduate University of Melbourne
B.Sc. (Hons) Australia

Selected Publications

Journal Article

  1. Casey MJ, Modzelewska K, Anderson D, Goodman J, Boer EF, Jimenez L, Grossman D, Stewart RA (2017). Transplantation of Zebrafish Pediatric Brain Tumors into Immune-competent Hosts for Long-term Study of Tumor Cell Behavior and Drug Response.LID - 10.3791/55712 [doi]. J Vis Exp, (123).
  2. Jimenez L, Wang J, Morrison MA, Whatcott C, Soh KK, Warner S, Bearss D, Jette CA, Stewart RA (2016). Phenotypic chemical screening using a zebrafish neural crest EMT reporter identifies retinoic acid as an inhibitor of epithelial morphogenesis. Dis Model Mech, 9(4), 389-400.
  3. Morrison MA, Zimmerman MW, Look AT, Stewart RA (2016). Studying the peripheral sympathetic nervous system and neuroblastoma in zebrafish. Methods Cell Biol, 134, 97-138.
  4. Modzelewska K, Boer EF, Mosbruger TL, Picard D, Anderson D, Miles RR, Kroll M, Oslund W, Pysher TJ, Schiffman JD, Jensen R, Jette CA, Huang A, Stewart RA (2016). MEK Inhibitors Reverse Growth of Embryonal Brain Tumors Derived from Oligoneural Precursor Cells. Cell Rep, 17(5), 1255-1264.
  5. Boer EF, Jette CA, Stewart RA (2016). Neural Crest Migration and Survival Are Susceptible to Morpholino-Induced Artifacts. PLoS One, 11(12), e0167278.
  6. Toruno C, Carbonneau S, Stewart RA, Jette C (2014). Interdependence of Bad and Puma during ionizing-radiation-induced apoptosis. PLoS One, 9(2), e88151.
  7. Pei D, Luther W, Wang W, Paw BH, Stewart RA, George RE (2013). Distinct neuroblastoma-associated alterations of PHOX2B impair sympathetic neuronal differentiation in zebrafish models. PLoS Genet, 9(6), e1003533.
  8. Sorrells S, Toruno C, Stewart RA, Jette C (2013). Analysis of apoptosis in zebrafish embryos by whole-mount immunofluorescence to detect activated Caspase 3. J Vis Exp, (82), e51060.
  9. Zhu S, Lee JS, Guo F, Shin J, Perez-Atayde AR, Kutok JL, Rodig SJ, Neuberg DS, Helman D, Feng H, Stewart RA, Wang W, George RE, Kanki JP, Look AT (2012). Activated ALK collaborates with MYCN in neuroblastoma pathogenesis. Cancer Cell, 21(3), 362-73.
  10. Sorrells S, Carbonneau S, Harrington E, Chen AT, Hast B, Milash B, Pyati U, Major MB, Zhou Y, Zon LI, Stewart RA, Look AT, Jette C (2012). Ccdc94 protects cells from ionizing radiation by inhibiting the expression of p53. PLoS Genet, 8(8), e1002922.
  11. Murphy DA, Diaz B, Bromann PA, Tsai JH, Kawakami Y, Maurer J, Stewart RA, Izpisua-Belmonte JC, Courtneidge SA (2011). A Src-Tks5 pathway is required for neural crest cell migration during embryonic development. PLoS One, 6(7), e22499.
  12. Bolli N, Payne EM, Rhodes J, Gjini E, Johnston AB, Guo F, Lee JS, Stewart RA, Kanki JP, Chen AT, Zhou Y, Zon LI, Look AT (2011). cpsf1 is required for definitive HSC survival in zebrafish. Blood, 117(15), 3996-4007.
  13. Stewart RA, Sanda T, Widlund HR, Zhu S, Swanson KD, Hurley AD, Bentires-Alj M, Fisher DE, Kontaridis MI, Look AT, Neel BG (2010). Phosphatase-dependent and -independent functions of Shp2 in neural crest cells underlie LEOPARD syndrome pathogenesis. Dev Cell, 18(5), 750-62.
  14. Schlisio S, Kenchappa R, Vredeveld L, George RE, Stewart R, Young AP, Greulich H, Pomeroy S, Maris JM, Look AT, Meyerson M, Peeper DS, Carter B, Kaelin WG (2008). The 1p36 gene KIF1Bß acts downstream of EglN3 to induce apoptosis and is mutated in nervous system tumors. Genes Dev, 22(7), 884-93.
  15. Jette CA, Flanagan AM, Ryan J, Pyati UJ, Carbonneau S, Stewart RA, Langenau DM, Look AT, Letai A (2008). BIM and other BCL-2 family proteins exhibit cross-species conservation of function between zebrafish and mammals. Cell Death Differ, 15(6), 1063-72.
  16. Smolen GA, Schott BJ, Stewart RA, Diederichs S, Muir B, Provencher HL, Look AT, Sgroi DC, Peterson RT, Haber DA (2007). A Rap GTPase interactor, RADIL, mediates migration of neural crest precursors. Genes Dev, 21(17), 2131-6.
  17. Stewart RA, Arduini BL, Berghmans S, George RE, Kanki JP, Henion PD, Look AT (2006). Zebrafish foxd3 is selectively required for neural crest specification, migration and survival. Dev Biol, 292(1), 174-88.
  18. Montero-Balaguer M, Lang MR, Sachdev SW, Knappmeyer C, Stewart RA, De La Guardia A, Hatzopoulos AK, Knapik EW (2006). The mother superior mutation ablates foxd3 activity in neural crest progenitor cells and depletes neural crest derivatives in zebrafish. Dev Dyn, 235(12), 3199-212.
  19. Yang X, Yu K, Hao Y, Li DM, Stewart R, Insogna KL, Xu T (2004). LATS1 tumour suppressor affects cytokinesis by inhibiting LIMK1. Nat Cell Biol, 6(7), 609-17.
  20. Pedraza LG, Stewart RA, Li DM, Xu T (2004). Drosophila Src-family kinases function with Csk to regulate cell proliferation and apoptosis. Oncogene, 23(27), 4754-62.
  21. Stewart RA, Li DM, Huang H, Xu T (2003). A genetic screen for modifiers of the lats tumor suppressor gene identifies C-terminal Src kinase as a regulator of cell proliferation in Drosophila. Oncogene, 22(41), 6436-44.


  1. Stewart RA, Lee JS, Lachnit M, Look AT, Kanki JP, Henion PD (2010). Studying peripheral sympathetic nervous system development and neuroblastoma in zebrafish. [Review]. Methods Cell Biol, 100, 127-52.
  2. Berghmans S, Jette C, Langenau D, Hsu K, Stewart R, Look AT, Kanki JP (2005). Making waves in cancer research: New models in the zebrafish. [Review]. BioTechniques, 39, 227-37.