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Lisa A. Cannon-Albright, Ph.D.

Languages spoken: English

Academic Information

Departments: Internal Medicine - Professor, Family & Preventive Medicine - Adjunct Professor

Divisions: Epidemiology, Public Health

Academic Office Information

Research Interests

  • Disease Predisposition Genes
  • Population-Based Studies
Dr. Lisa Cannon-Albright is Professor and Division Chief of the Division of Genetic Epidemiology in the Department of Medicine at the University of Utah School of Medicine. She is a Huntsman Cancer Institute investigator and a member of the Cancer Control and Population Sciences program. As a Genetic Epidemiologist her research interests include computerized genealogy data, high risk pedigree studies, and predisposition gene identification.

Dr. Albright has over 3 decades of experience in designing and directing studies of high-risk pedigrees to identify genes predisposing to cancer and other diseases. Genes identified in Utah high risk pedigree studies include NF (Barker et al.); Alport Syndrome (Atkins et al): BRCA1 (Miki et al, 1994); BRCA2 (Tavtigian et al, 1996); p16 (Kamb et al, 1994; Cannon-Albright et al., 1994); and ELAC2/PRCA2 (Tavtigian et al., 2001). Dr. Albright’s research goals are to identify and understand predisposition genes for common traits. Her research group accomplishes this primarily through analysis of genealogy data and the study of extended Utah high-risk pedigrees. She currently directs and is involved in cancer studies of prostate cancer, pancreas cancer, Ewings sarcoma, melanoma, pelvic floor disorders, colorectal cancer, and the exploration of new population-based resources. Her work is sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, the University of Utah, AACR, Alex’s Lemonade Stand, the Huntsman Cancer Institute, and the George E. Wahlen Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Dr. Albright has over 3 decades of experience analyzing a unique computerized genealogy of Utah, linked to medical data, to describe the heritable contribution to various health-related phenotypes including cancer, influenza mortality, asthma mortality, aneurysm, heart disease, diabetes, and rotator disease (Cannon et al., 1982, Cannon-Albright et al., 1994; 2003; 2005, Horne et al., 2005, 2006; Teerlink et al., 2007; Albright et al., 2008; Weires et al., 2005; Tashjian et al., 2009), among others. Dr. Albright continues to explore many different phenotypes using the UPDB. She is currently collaborating on the following phenotypes: head and neck cancers, lung cancer, ataxias, Alzheimers, spinal disorders, neurofibromatosis, celiac disease, influenza, asthma, thinness, tendonopathies, benign pituitary tumors, stroke, auto-immune disease, gallstone disease, sepsis, stroke, skeletal injury, and osteoarthritis.

Dr. Albright has recently built the genealogy of Utah and Massachusetts and record linked this genealogy to VA patients served in these states. This is part of a long-term plan to build the US genealogy and link to all 24 million VA patients nationwide.

Dr. Albright is interested in exploring new approaches and has directed a collaboration to develop analyses using high density SNP data to identify regions identical by descent within and between individuals in search of predisposition genes (Thomas et al., 2008). She has developed an innovative approach of mining existing tissue resources to obtain germline DNA for affected members of high-risk pedigrees to enable genetic studies for diseases that are quickly lethal.

Education History

Doctoral Training University of Utah
Genetic Epidemiology/Biomedical Informatics
Graduate Training University of Utah
Undergraduate Brigham Young University

Global Impact


Description Country
Utah High Risk Asthma Pedigree Study, AllerGen Gene Environment Asthma Workshop, Vancouver, Canada. Canada
Genetic heterogeneity of prostate cancer, Prostate Cancer Charitable Trust, Oxford Meeting, Hertford College, Oxford, England. United Kingdom
Utah genealogical database. Family Based Studies and Genetic Epidemiology:Theory and Practice Symposium, Sheffield, England. United Kingdom
Prostate cancer studies in Utah and the 22q locus. Prostate Cancer Research Foundation Symposium, London, England. United Kingdom