Ken Batai, PhD

Cancer Prevention and Control Program


Ken Batai earned his BA in Anthropology from Southern Illinois University and his MA and PhD in Anthropology from University of Illinois at Chicago. He completed his postdoctoral training in Cancer Education and Career Training Program, Institute for Health Research and Policy, University of Illinois at Chicago where he worked with Rick Kittles on prostate cancer health disparities and genetics in African Americans. In 2014, he joined University of Arizona as a research scientist in Division of Urology, Department of Surgery. Then, he was promoted to Research Assistant Professor in Department of Urology in 2017.

Cancer Focus

Dr. Batai is a cancer health disparities researcher trained in anthropological genetics and medical anthropology. This unique training background prepared him to conduct transdisciplinary research projects to understand the interactions between gene/biology and social/behavior factors affecting development and progression of various diseases. The overarching goal of his research is to identify genetic, biological, and social/behavioral factors causing urologic cancer health disparities. His past and current research focuses on prostate cancer and kidney cancer in underserved racial/ethnic minority groups. Currently, he is a PI of NCI funded R21 project to understand kidney cancer surgical disparities in Arizona.