Sandi Alexander Kwee, PhD, MD

Sandi Alexander Kwee, MD, PhD, MSc

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | (808) 691-5466

Full Member, Cancer Biology Program, University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center
Core Clinical Member, Translational and Clinical Research, University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center

Academic Appointment(s):
Associate Professor (Associate Researcher), Cancer Biology Program, University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center
Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Research Program Director, Hamamatsu/Queen's PET Imaging Center

MD, Medicine, University of Pittsburgh
Residency, Internal Medicine, University of Hawaiʻi
PhD, Biomedical Sciences, University of Hawaiʻi
MSc, Clinical Research, University of Hawaiʻi

Nuclear Medicine and Nuclear Cardiology, University of Washington, Seattle


Diplomate of the American Board of Nuclear Medicine, Certification is Current


2022 – Richard L. Wahl Mid-Career Leadership Award, The Education and Research Foundation for Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
2019 – Expanding National Capacity in Patient-centered Outcomes Research through Training (ENACT) Fellow
2016 – Alavi-Mandell Award, The Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
2015 – American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Travel Award, Croucher Course and Seminar in Cancer Biology, Hong Kong University
2012 – Weinman Innovator Award for Translational Research, University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center, “Liver Cancer Detection Using Tumor DNA Isolated from Blood”

Research Focus

Dr. Kwee is a physician scientist with specialty board certification in nuclear medicine and molecular imaging. Leveraging formal training in clinical trial design and clinical research, he has designed and conducted multiple investigator-initiated clinical trials, including four NCI-funded clinical trials (NCT01395030, NCT00928252, NCT00928174, and NCT04965454). His main research interest is in developing and clinically evaluating novel cancer imaging methods based on positron emission tomography (PET), as well as in applying clinical and molecular imaging techniques to study cancer biology in-vivo, often in combination with other sources of biomarkers that have included tissue metabolomics, genomics, and liquid biopsy.

Selected Publications

Kwee SA, Wong LL, Ludema C, Deng CK, Taira D, Seto T, Landsittel D. (2023). TargetTrial Emulation: A Design Tool for Cancer Clinical Trials. Journal of Clinical Oncology Clinical Cancer Informatics; Jan;7:e2200140. doi: 10.1200/CCI.22.00140. PMID: 36608311.

Kwee SA, Wong LL, Sato MM, Acoba JD, Rho YS, Srivastava A, Landsittel DP. (2021). Transarterial Radioembolization for Hepatocellular Carcinoma with Major Vascular Invasion: A Nationwide Propensity Score-Matched Analysis with Target Trial Emulation. J Vasc Interv Radiol.;Sep;32(9):1258-1266. PMID: 34242775.

Kwee S, Tiirikainen M, Sato M, Acoba J, Wei R, Jia W, Le Marchand L, Wong L. (2019). Transcriptomics Associates Molecular Features with 18 F-Fluorocholine PET/CT Imaging Phenotype and Its Potential Relationship to Survival in Hepatocellular Carcinoma. Cancer Research.;April 01; 79(7):1696-1704. PMID: 30760520

Kwee S, Wong L, Chan O, Kalathil S, Tsai N. (2016). PET/CT with 18 F Fluorocholine as an Imaging Biomarker for Chronic Liver Disease: A Preliminary Radiopathologic Correspondence Study in Patients with Liver Cancer. RadiologyApril;287(1):294-302. PMID 29315063.

Lee J, Sato MM, Coel MN, Lee KH, Kwee SA. (2016). Prediction of PSA Progression in astration-Resistant Prostate Cancer Based on Treatment-Associated Change in Tumor Burden Quantified by 18F-Fluorocholine PET/CT. J Nucl Med;Jul;57(7):1058-64. PubMed PMID: 26912444

Kwee SA, Ko JP, Jiang CS, Watters M, Coel MN. (2007). Solitary Brain Lesions Enhancing at MR Imaging: Evaluation with Fluorine 18 Fluorocholine PET. Radiology;Aug;244(2):557-65.

Active Grants

S. Kwee, PI
"Evaluation of treatment predictors reflecting beta-catenin activation in hepatocellular carcinoma"
07/2021 - 06/2026