Peter W. Laird, Ph.D.

Professor, Department of Epigenetics; Peter and Emajean Cook Endowed Chair in Epigenetics

Areas of Expertise

Cancer epigenomics, experimental models of cancer epigenetics, epigenetic characterization of technology, epigenomic bioinformatics, clinical and translational epigenetics


Dr. Laird earned his B.S. and M.S. from the University of Leiden and earned his Ph.D. in 1988 from the University of Amsterdam with Dr. Piet Borst. He completed postdoctoral training in the laboratory of Dr. Anton Berns at the Netherlands Cancer Institute and with Dr. Rudolf Jaenisch at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research. Dr. Laird was a faculty member at the University of Southern California (USC) from 1996 to 2014, where he served as professor of surgery, biochemistry and molecular biology; as Skirball-Kenis Professor of Cancer Research; as a program leader in epigenetics and regulation for the Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center; and as director of the USC Epigenome Center. Dr. Laird joined VAI as a professor in September 2014.