Peter Laird, PhD

Peter Laird, Ph.D. is currently an associate professor of surgery, biochemistry and molecular biology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC, and is principal investigator on three NCI R01 grants. He is director of basic research for surgery, and co-leader with Dr. Michael Stallcup of the Epigenetics and Regulation Program at the USC/Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center. He serves on various editorial and scientific advisory boards and is co-founder of ORCA Biosciences, currently Epigenomics, AG, and of TherEpi Corporation.

He pioneered the use of mouse models to investigate the causal contribution of DNA methylation to cancer (Laird et al. 1995, Cell 81, 197), and invented two DNA methylation assays, COBRA (Xiong and Laird 1997, Nucleic Acids Res 25, 2532) and MethyLight (Eads et al. 2000, Nucleic Acids Res 28, E32), which has been issued a U.S. patent.
Dr. Laird earned his B.S. and his M.S., Cum Laude, from the University of Leiden, the Netherlands. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Amsterdam with Dr. Piet Borst, and postdoctoral training from Dr. Anton Berns at the Netherlands Cancer Institute and Dr. Rudolf Jaenisch at the Whitehead Institute at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.