Peter Lance, MD

Cancer Prevention and Control Program


I obtained my undergraduate, masters and medical degrees at the University of Cambridge, UK. After specialty training in London, previous appointments in the U.S. include postdoctoral studies at UCSF and a faculty appointment at Brown University. Before joining UArizona Cancer Center in 2001, I was a staff physician at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center and Chief of Gastroenterology at the University of Buffalo. UArizona Cancer Center positions have included Program Director, Cancer Prevention and Control, and UArizona Cancer Center Deputy Director. My current academic title is Professor Emeritus of Molecular and Cellular Biology. University-level roles have included a term as Chair of the UA Committee on Promotion and Tenure. In relation to my current research focus on Native American cancer disparities, I am a member of the Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health Cancer Care Project Steering Committee. I serve on the Navajo Nation Department of Health Cancer Control Plan Workgroup.

Cancer Focus

My basic, translational, and clinical research has been on the mechanisms of colorectal carcinogenesis and approaches for prevention and early detection of colorectal cancer. Earlier mechanistic studies focused on the regulation of glycosylation in colonic epithelium. My laboratory focused more recently on prostaglandin synthesis and inflammation in the colonic microenvironment. I have led a series of multicenter, NCI-funded colorectal adenoma prevention studies in a cumulative total of >4,000 patients. The biobank of ~250,000 biospecimens from these patients has provided the experimental materials for >50 peer-reviewed publications, including current metabolomic and lipidomic analyses. Current disparities research, funded as a CCSG supplement supported by the NCI Moonshot initiative, takes an implementation science approach to investigating ways to move towards eradication of glaring disparities in rates of colorectal cancer screening among Native Americans compared to the general U.S. population.