Diana M. Stafforini, PhD

Research Interests

  • Signal Transduction
  • Apoptosis
  • Platelet Activating Factor
  • Lipid Peroxidation
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Colon Cancer
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Inflammation
  • Lipids
  • Lysophospholipids
  • Phospholipids
  • Phospholipases A
  • Phospholipid Ethers


Lab Website


  • English
  • French
  • Spanish

Academic Information

  • Departments: Internal Medicine - Research Professor
  • Divisions: Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Cancer Center Programs: Cell Response & Regulation

Academic Office Information

  • 801-585-3402
  • Huntsman Cancer Institute
    2000 Circle of Hope, Room: 3364
    Salt Lake City, UT 84112

Academic Bio

Diana Stafforini, PhD, is an investigator at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI), a research associate professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, at the University of Utah School of Medicine, and a member of the Cell Response and Regulation Program.

She is interested in the role of inflammation in human disease. Her current studies at HCI are aimed at applying her expertise in the field of inflammation to the discovery of new pathways and mechanisms that lead to cancer. As a graduate student, Stafforini became well known for her work on an anti-inflammatory enzyme, PAF-AH, that plays important roles in physiology and disease. In subsequent years, and in association with investigators at the University of Utah and at ICOS Corporation, she conducted studies aimed at establishing the role of this enzyme in vascular and pulmonary diseases. These studies provided a foundation for clinical trials focused on discovering the suitability of PAF-AH as a treatment for diseases with inflammatory components such as acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), asthma, and sepsis. In addition to these studies, Stafforini discovered a human mutation that results in the lack of PAF-AH activity. She established that individuals who have this mutation have a tendency to develop severe inflammation.

Stafforini completed her PhD in biochemistry at the University of Utah. She continued her work as a research associate, and subsequently joined the faculty of the Department of Medicine before joining HCI.

Education History

Type School Degree
Postdoctoral Fellowship University of Utah, NEH-CVRTI
Cardiovascular Research
Postdoctoral Fellow
Doctoral Training University of Utah
Undergraduate University of Buenos Aires

Global Impact

Education History

Type School Degree Country
Undergraduate University of Buenos Aires
B.S. Argentina

Selected Publications

Journal Article

  1. Kan CF, Singh AB, Stafforini DM, Azhar S, Liu J (2014). Arachidonic acid downregulates acyl-CoA synthetase 4 expression by promoting its ubiquitination and proteasomal degradation. J Lipid Res, 55(8), 1657-1667.
  2. Nakano T, Iravani A, Kim M, Hozumi Y, Lohse M, Reichert E, Crotty TM, Stafforini DM, Topham MK (2014). Diacylglycerol kinase eta modulates oncogenic properties of lung cancer cells. Clin Transl Oncol, 16(1), 29-35.
  3. Matsumiya T, Xing F, Ebina M, Hayakari R, Imaizumi T, Yoshida H, Kikuchi H, Topham MK, Satoh K, Stafforini DM (2013). Novel role for molecular transporter importin 9 in posttranscriptional regulation of IFN-epsilon expression. J Immunol, 191(4), 1907-15.
  4. Xu C, Reichert EC, Nakano T, Lohse M, Gardner AA, Revelo MP, Topham MK, Stafforini DM (2013). Deficiency of phospholipase A2 group 7 decreases intestinal polyposis and colon tumorigenesis in Apc(Min/+) mice. Cancer Res, 73(9), 2806-16.
  5. Crotty TM, Nakano T, Stafforini DM, Topham MK (2013). Diacylglycerol kinase delta modulates Akt phosphorylation through pleckstrin homology domain leucine-rich repeat protein phosphatase 2 (PHLPP2). J Biol Chem, 288(3), 1439-47.
  6. Teixeira-da-Cunha MG, Gomes RN, Roehrs N, Bozza FA, Prescott SM, Stafforini D, Zimmerman GA, Bozza PT, Castro-Faria-Neto HC (2013). Bacterial clearance is improved in septic mice by platelet-activating factor-acetylhydrolase (PAF-AH) administration. PLoS ONE, 8(9), e74567.
  7. Monaco ME, Creighton CJ, Lee P, Zou X, Topham MK, Stafforini DM (2010). Expression of Long-chain Fatty Acyl-CoA Synthetase 4 in Breast and Prostate Cancers Is Associated with Sex Steroid Hormone Receptor Negativity. Translational Oncology, 3(2), 91-8.
  8. Cai J, Crotty TM, Reichert E, Carraway KL 3rd, Stafforini DM, Topham MK (2010). Diacylglycerol kinase delta and protein kinase C(alpha) modulate epidermal growth factor receptor abundance and degradation through ubiquitin-specific protease 8. J Biol Chem, 285(10), 6952-9.
  9. Phelps RA, Broadbent TJ, Stafforini DM, Jones DA (2009). New perspectives on APC control of cell fate and proliferation in colorectal cancer. Cell Cycle, 8(16), 2549-56.
  10. Matsumiya T, Imaizumi T, Yoshida H, Satoh K, Topham MK, Stafforini DM (2009). The levels of retinoic acid-inducible gene I are regulated by heat shock protein 90-alpha. J Immunol, 182(5), 2717-25.
  11. Al-Salihi MA, Terrece Pearman A, Doan T, Reichert EC, Rosenberg DW, Prescott SM, Stafforini DM, Topham MK (2009). Transgenic expression of cyclooxygenase-2 in mouse intestine epithelium is insufficient to initiate tumorigenesis but promotes tumor progression. Cancer Lett, 273(2), 225-32.


  1. Matsumiya T, Stafforini DM (2010). Function and regulation of retinoic acid-inducible gene-I. [Review]. Crit Rev Immunol, 30(6), 489-513.

Book Chapter

  1. Rosenson R, Stafforini DM (2014). Role of Lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 in vascular disease. In Christie M. Ballantyne (Ed.), Clinical Lipidology-A Companion to Braunwald's Heart Disease (Second edition, pp. 146-162). Philadelphia: Elsevbier Saunders.


  1. Stafforini DM, Zimmerman GA (2014). Unraveling the PAF-AH/Lp-PLA2 controversy. J Lipid Res, 55(9), 1811-4.