Department of  Neurosurgery
Menu  -
»
Call Us: (314) 362-3636

Ammar H. Hawasli, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor of Neurological Surgery, Orthopedic Surgery, Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience

Washington University School of Medicine

Department of Neurological Surgery
660 S. Euclid Avenue
Campus Box 8057
St. Louis, Missouri 63110

Patient Appointments: 314-362-3577
Administrative Office:
314-747-6144
Fax: 314-362-2107

Clinical Interests
General neurosurgery with a focus in spinal surgery.  Surgical treatment of disorders of the craniocervical junction, cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine. Expertise in degenerative spinal disease, spondylosis, spondylolisthesis, spinal tumors, metastatic cancer, inflammatory disorders, ankylosing spondylitis, rheumatoid arthritis, infections, spinal deformity, neurotrauma, spinal cord injury, minimally invasive spine surgery, complex spinal instrumentation and reconstruction, arthroplasty, and microsurgery for brain tumors and spinal cord tumors.

Research Interests
With advances in human systems neuroscience and functional magnetic resonance imaging, we are now able to map human brain networks and directly apply these networks to human disease and clinical practice. My functional spinal neurosurgery research laboratory aims to understand the physiological and pathophysiological relationships between the spine and brain. We study brain physiology and connectivity in spinal disorder patients leveraging expertise in both spinal neurosurgery and brain physiology and a network of high-level collaborators at Washington University School of Medicine.

For more information, visit Dr. Hawasli's Lab.

Education
BA, Biochemistry, Magna Cum Laude
Washington University
Saint Louis, Missouri
1998-2002

PhD, Neuroscience
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center              
Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences: Neuroscience Program
Dallas, Texas
2003-2009

MD, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center       
Dallas, Texas
2003-2009

Residency
Intern in Neurological Surgery
Washington University School of Medicine, Barnes-Jewish Hospital & Saint Louis Children’s Hospital
Saint Louis, Missouri
2009—2010

Resident in Neurological Surgery
Washington University School of Medicine, Barnes-Jewish Hospital & Saint Louis Children’s Hospital
Saint Louis, Missouri
2010—2016

Specialist Registrar in Neurosurgery
Beaumont Hospital
Dublin, Ireland
2015

Chief Resident in Neurological Surgery
Washington University School of Medicine, Barnes-Jewish Hospital
Saint Louis, Missouri
2015—2016

Fellowships
Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, Departments of Biomedical Engineering & Neurosurgery at
Washington University School of Medicine
Saint Louis, Missouri
2013-2015

Spinal Surgery Fellowship
Departments of Neurosurgery and Orthopedic Surgery
Washington University School of Medicine
Saint Louis, Missouri
2016—2017

Hospital Appointments
Barnes-Jewish Hospital
Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital
St. Louis Children’s Hospital

Medical Licensure
Missouri

Board Certification
Board Eligible

Publications

  1. Hawasli AH, Saifee O, Liu C, Nonet ML, Crowder CM. Resistance to Volatile Anesthetics by Mutations Enhancing Excitatory Neurotransmitter Release in Caenorhabditis elegans. Genetics. 2004 Oct; 168(2):831-43.
  2. Hawasli AH, Benavides DR, Nguyen C, Kansy JW, Hayashi K, Chambon P, Greengard P, Powell CM, Cooper DC, and Bibb JA. Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 governs learning and synaptic plasticity via control of NMDAR degradation. Nature Neuroscience. 2007 Jul;10(7):880-6.
  3. Hawasli AH, Bibb JA. Alternative roles for Cdk5 in learning and synaptic plasticity. Biotechnol J. 2007 Aug; 2(8):941-8.
  4. Hawasli AH. Regulation of excitatory neurotransmission, synaptic plasticity, and learning by Cyclin-dependent kinase 5.  Ph.D. dissertation. Division of Basic Sciences, Department of Neuroscience. University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas. July 2007.
  5. Benavides DR, Quinn JJ, Zhong P, Hawasli AH, DiLeone RJ, Kansy JW, Olausson P, Yan Z, Taylor JR, Bibb JA. Cdk5 modulates cocaine reward, motivation, and striatal neuron excitability. J of Neuroscience 2007 Nov 21;27(47):12967-76.
  6. Sahin B, Hawasli AH, Greene RW, Molkentin JD, Bibb JA. Negative regulation of Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 targets by protein kinase C. Eur. J. of Pharmacology. 2008 Mar 10;581(3):270-5.
  7. Hawasli AH, Cayce R, Luong T, Taiwo E, Feliciano MN, Reimold SC, DiMaio JM, Haley BH. Metastatic pleomorphic sarcoma to the left atrium. Rare Tumors, Vol 1, No 1 (2009)
  8. Hawasli AH, Koovakkattu D, Hayashi K, Anderson AE, Powell CM, Sinton C, Bibb JA, Cooper DC. Regulation of hippocampal and behavioral excitability by Cyclin-dependent kinase 5. PLoS One. 2009 Jun 4;4(6):e5808.
  9. Xu J, Kurup P, Zhang Y, Hawasli AH, Bibb JA, Lombroso P.  Striatal-Enriched Protein Tyrosine Phosphatase is Neuroprotective against Excitotoxicity. J Neurosci. 2009 Jul 22;29(29):9330-43.
  10. Pahys JM, Pahys JR, Cho SK, Zebala LP, Kang MM, Hawasli AH, Sweet FA, Lee DH, Riew KD. Methods to Decrease Post-operative Infections Following Posterior Cervical Spine Surgery.  The Spine Journal. 2011 Oct 31; 11(10):s136.
  11. Hawasli AH, Ray WZ, Murphy RK, Dacey RG Jr, Leuthardt EC. MRI-guided focused laser interstitial thermal therapy for subinsular metastatic adenocarcinoma: Technical Case Report. Neurosurgery. 2012 Jun;70(2 Suppl Operative):332-7
  12. Hawasli AH, Rubin JB, Tran DD, Adkins DR, Waheed S, Hullar TE, Gutmann DH, Evans, J, Chicoine MR. Anti-angiogenic agents for non-malignant brain tumors.  Journal of Neurological Surgery: Part B. 2012 Feb 10;74(S1):14.
  13. Reynolds MR, Hawasli AH, Murphy RKJ, Ray WZ, Simpson JR, Drzymala RE, Rich KM. Acute Hemorrhage Following Gamma Knife Radiosurgery to a Clival Meningioma. J Spine Neurosurg. 2013, 2:2
  14. Hawasli AH, Rubin JB, Tran DD, Adkins DR, Waheed S, Hullar TE, Gutmann DH, Evans J, Leonard JR, Zipfel GJ, Chicoine MR. Anti-angiogenic agents for non-malignant brain tumors.  Journal of Neurological Surgery: Part B. 12 Mar 2013
  15. Pahys JM, Pahys JR, Cho SK, Kang MM, Zebala LP, Hawasli AH, Sweet FA, Lee DH, Riew KD. Methods to Decrease Post-operative Infections Following Posterior Cervical Spine Surgery. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2013 Mar 20;95(6):549-54
  16. Hawasli AH, Buckley R, Limbrick DL, Smyth MD,  Leonard JR, Santiago P, Stewart TJ, Park TS, Grubb RL,  Dowling JL, Leuthardt EC,  Rich KM, Zipfel GJ, Dacey RG,  Chicoine MR. Open brain biopsies: predictors of efficacy and outcomes.  Neurosurgery. 2013 Aug;73(2):224-32
  17. Hawasli AH, Haydon DH, Dahiya S, Smyth MD. Pontine Extraventricular Neurocytoma in a Child. Pediatric Neurosurgery. 2012;48(5):319-23
  18. Hawasli AH, Swapnil B, Shimony JS, Miller-Thomas M, Leuthardt EC. Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Guided Focused Laser Interstitial Thermal Therapy for Intracranial Lesions: Single-Institution Series. Neurosurgery. 2013 Dec; 73(6):1007-17.
  19. Plattner F, Hernandez A, Kistler TM, Pozo K, Zhong P, Yuen EY, Tan T, Hawasli AH, Cooke SF, Nishi A, Guo A, Wiederhold T, Yan Z, Bibb JA. Memory Enhancement by Targeting Cdk5 Regulation of NR2B. Neuron. 2014 Mar 5; 81(5):1070-83
  20. Leuthardt EC, Hawasli AH. Commentary-Journal Club: Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Guided Focused Laser Interstitial Thermal Therapy for Intracranial Lesions: Single-Institution Series. Neurosurgery. 2014 May; 74(5):565.
  21. Hawasli AH, Beaumont, Vogel T, Woo A, Leonard JR. Acalvaria. Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics. 2014 Jun; 13:1-3.
  22. Mohammadi AM, Hawasli AH, Rodriguez A, Schroeder JL, Laxton AW, Elson P, Tatter S, Barnett GH, Leuthardt EC. The Role of Laser Interstitial Thermal Therapy in Enhancing Progression Free Survival of Difficult-to-Access High Grade Gliomas: a Multi-Center Study. Cancer Medicine. 2014 Aug; 3(4):971-9
  23. Hawasli AH, Ray WZ, Wright NM.  Idiopathic Spinal Cord Herniation: Single Institution Series and Technical Report. Neurosurgery. 2014 Sep; 10 Suppl 3:E498-504
  24. Bandt SK, Bundy DT, Hawasli AH, Ayoub KW, Sharm M, Hacker CD, Pahwa M, Leuthardt EC.  The role of resting state networks in focal neocortical seizures.  PLoS One.  2014 Sep 23;9(9):e107401.
  25. Hawasli AH, Bandt SK, Hogan E, Werner N, Leuthardt EC. Laser Ablation as an Effective Treatment Strategy for Medically Refractory Dominant Insular Epilepsy. Stereotactic & Functional Neurosurgery.  2014 Oct 29;92(6):397-404.
  26. Hawasli AH, Chicoine MR, Dacey RG. Choosing Wisely: A Neurosurgical Perspective on Neuroimaging for Headaches. Neurosurgery. 2014 Sep 24.
  27. Hawasli AH, Kim AH, Dunn G, Tran D, Leuthardt EC.  Stereotactic laser ablations for high-grade gliomas. Neurosurgical Focus. 37 (6):E1, Dec 2014
  28. Hawasli AH, Chang J, Reynolds MR, Ray WZ. Brachialis to Anterior Interosseous Nerve Transfer for Cervical Spinal Cord Injury: Technical Note. Global Spine Journal. 2015 Apr;5(2):110-7. doi: 10.1055/s-0034-1396760.
  29. Hawasli AH, Hullar T, Dorward I. Idiopathic Scoliosis and the Vestibular System. European Spine Journal. 15 Feb;24(2):227-33. doi: 10.1007/s00586-014-3701-4.0.
  30. Sun SQ, Hawasli AH, Huang J, Chicoine MR, Kim AH. Decision Points in the Management of Atypical and Anaplastic Meningiomas: A Treatment Algorithm. Neurosurgical Focus. 2015 Mar;38(3):E3. doi: 10.3171/2015.1.FOCUS14757.
  31. Hawasli AH, Leuthardt EC.  Response to Letters to the Editor: Stereotactic laser ablations for high-grade gliomas. Neurosurgical Focus. 39 (2):E20, Aug 2015. 10.3171/2015.3.FOCUS1566
  32. Janjua MB, Yarbrough CK, Gamble P, Zhang A, Mengzuan T, Ghenbot R, Hawasli AH, Kelly M, Dorward I, Santiago P, Wright N, Ray WZ. Patient demographics, insurance status, and race predict mortality after spinal cord injury.  Journal of Neurosurgery. 2015 Aug:123(2):A520-1.
  33. Ray WZ, Chang J, Hawasli A, Wilson TJ, Yang L. Motor Nerve Transfers: A Comprehensive Review. Neurosurgery. 2016 Jan;78(1):1-26.
  34. Leuthardt EC, Allan M, Kamran M, Hawasli AH, Snyder AZ, Hacker CD, Mitchell TJ, Shimony JS. Resting State BOLD fMRI – A Paradigm Shift in Preoperative Brain Mapping. Stereotactic & Functional Neurosurgery. 2015;93(6):427-39.
  35. Yarbrough CK, Bommarito KM, Gamble PG, Hawasli AH, Dorward IG, Olsen MA, Ray WZ. Population-based approaches to treatment and readmission after spinal cord injury. J Neurosurg Sci. 2016 Mar 3. 
  36. Hawasli AH, Chang J, Yarbrough CK, Steger-May K, Dorward IG. Interpedicular height as a predictor of radiculopathy in adult degenerative scoliosis. The Spine Journal. 2016 May 2. pii: S1529-9430(16)30067-5. 
  37. Yarbrough CK, Gamble PG, Janjua MB, Tang M, Ghenbot R, Zhang AJ, Juknis N, Hawasli AH, Kelly M, Ray WZ. Readmission after spinal cord injury: analysis of an institutional cohort of 795 patients. J Neurosurg Sci. 2016 May 6. 
  38. Hawasli AH, Kim D, Ledbetter NM, Dahiya S, Barbour DL, Leuthardt EC. Dissecting Human Cortical Oscillations with Surgical Transections. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. 2016 Jun 28;10:330. doi: 10.3389/fnhum.2016.00330. eCollection 2016.
  39. Hawasli AH, Chacko R, Szrama NP, Bundy DT, Pahwa M, Yarbrough CK, Dlouhy BJ, Limbrick D, Barbour DL, Smyth MD, Leuthardt EC.  Electrophysiological Sequelae of Functional Hemispherotomy in Ipsilateral Human Cortex. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. In press.
  40. Hawasli AH, Khalifeh J, Chatrath A, Yarbrough CK, Ray WZ. Radiological Analysis of Expandable versus non-expandable cages for Minimally Invasive Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion. Neurosurgical Focus. In press.
  41. Kamath AA, Friedman DD, Hacker CD, Smyth MD, Limbrick DD, Kim AH, Hawasli AH, Leuthardt EC. MRI-Guided Interstitial Laser Ablation for Intracranial Lesions: A Large Single Institution Experience of 133 Cases. Stereotactic & Functional Neurosurgery. Under Review
  42. Hawasli AH, Cashin, JL, Wright NM. Modular Cervical Plate System for Adjacent Segment Disease. Clinical Spine Surgery. Under Review
  43. Mokkarala M, Hawasli AH, Buchowski JM. Adult Neuromuscular Scoliosis after Motor Cortex Stimulator Placement: A Case Report. European Spine Journal. Under Review. 
  44. Hawasli AH, Rutlin J, Roland J, Murphy RKJ, Leuthardt EC, Shimony JS, Ray WZ. Spinal Cord Injury Disrupts Resting-State Networks in the Human Brain. Journal of Neurotrauma. Under Review.