Dennis D. Hickstein, M.D.
Class of 1967
Hall of Honor 2013
Following graduation in 1967, Dr. Hickstein received his BA in British history from the University of Nebraska- Lincoln in 1971. After the summer of 1971, he returned to the University of Nebraska, completed his pre-medical studies, and entered the University of Nebraska Medical School in 1974.
Dr. Hickstein graduated from medical school in 1978, and continued his medical training with an internship and residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan Medical Center under the visionary leadership of Dr. William N. Kelley. He then spent one year as a junior faculty member in the Department of Medicine at the University of Michigan Hospital.
Dr. Hickstein completed subspecialty training in Hematology from1982 to 1987 at the University of Washington School of Medicine and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington. He worked under the direction of Nobel Prize winner E. Donnell Thomas.
Following the completion of his training, Dr. Hickstein began his academic career as a faculty member at the University of Washington School of Medicine in the Division of Hematology. Throughout his academic career in Seattle, Dr. Hickstein held faculty appointments at the Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. During this time Dr. Hickstein’s studies focused on hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and gene therapy for genetic immunodeficiency diseases.
In 2000 Dr. Hickstein was recruited to the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland to direct the program in Molecular Oncology and Gene Transfer, and to design clinical trials in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and gene therapy for children and adults with genetic immunodeficiency diseases. Currently Dr. Hickstein is directing the clinical program in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation for new immunodeficiency diseases while also maintaining an active research program in the use of gene therapy to reprogram the patient’s own blood cells to make a replacement copy of genes that are defective or mutated.
Dr. Hickstein has received numerous awards, mentored future faculty members, and served as the keynote speaker for many medical organizations during his career. In 1993 he was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation. He has lectured throughout the US and in Canada, Brazil, Greece, and the Netherlands on the topic of innovative treatments for genetic immunodeficiency diseases.
Dr. Hickstein and his wife, Dr. Mary Musselman, have two sons, Daniel Hickstein and Matthew Musselman.