Raymond Lai

Professor, Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry - Laboratory Medicine & Pathology Dept


Professor, Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry - Laboratory Medicine & Pathology Dept
(587) 873-2223
Cross Cancer Institute
11560 University Avenue
Edmonton AB
T6G 1Z2


Area of Study / Keywords

Cancer stemness STAT signaling Intra-tumoral heterogeneity Sox2 NPM-ALK Pathology cancer cell plasticity autophagy chemoresistance tyrosine kinase inhibitors Myc lymphoma carcinoma


Dr. Raymond Lai is currently appointed as Professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology in the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry.


Using ALK-positive anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALK+ALCL) as the primary experimental model, my laboratory has been studying how oncogenic tyrosine kinases such as NPM-ALK mediates and promotes oncogenesis for the past 2 decades. One of the major focuses is related to the interactions between NPM-ALK and the STAT pathway, especially that of STAT1/STAT3. Since 2010, our NPM-ALK research has led us to a highly important embryonic stem cell protein, Sox2. Using a Sox2 transcription activity reporter, we discovered a highly novel intra-tumoral heterogeneity, in which a small subset of stem-like cells can be identified and purified. Most recently, we are studying how these stem-like cells create chemoresistance via directly altering autophagy, a subject that had won the 2016 Nobel Prize in Medicine/Physiology. I am currently recruiting students or post-doctoral fellows to further explore how cancer stem-like cells utilize autophagy to promote cell survival and chemoresistance, and how NPM-ALK/STAT pathway play roles in this context. 

Featured Publications

Stubbins R.J., Lam R., Zhu J., Ghosh S., Mabilangan C., Kuruvilla J., Goswami R.S., Lai R., Preiksaitis J.K., Jain M.D., Peters A.C.

Clinical Lymphoma Myeloma & Leukemia. 2022 October; 22 (10):744-752 10.1016/j.clml.2022.05.006

Chen Z.W., Wizniak J., Shang C., Lai R.

ARCHIVES OF PATHOLOGY & LABORATORY MEDICINE. 2022 June; 146 (6):718-726 10.5858/arpa.2020-0726-OA

Rostamizadeh L., Molavi O., Rashid M., Ramazani F., Baradaran B., Lavasanaifar A., Lai R.

BioImpacts. 2022 May; 12 (3):261-290 10.34172/bi.2022.23896

Garland G.D., Ducray S.P., Jahangiri L., Pucci P., Burke G.A.A., Monahan J., Lai R., Merkel O., Schiefer A.I., Kenner L., Bannister A.J., Turner S.D.

Cancers. 2022 January; 14 (1) 10.3390/cancers14010151

Lai J., Li J., Gniadecki R., Lai R.

Cells. 2021 November; 10 (11) 10.3390/cells10113190

Baksh S., Volodko N., Soucie M., Geier S.B., Diep A., Rozak K., Chan T.Y., Mustapha J., Lai R., Estey M., Verity B., Lee M.C.

Diagnostic Microbiology and Infectious Disease. 2021 October; 101 (2) 10.1016/j.diagmicrobio.2021.115458

Espinos E., Lai R., Giuriato S.

Cells. 2021 October; 10 (10) 10.3390/cells10102517

Peng S.H.T., Wong B., Chen W., Lai R., Canterbury L.A.

Journal of Hematopathology. 2021 September; 14 (3):235-242 10.1007/s12308-021-00455-7

Li J., Haque M., Shang C., Hassan B., Liu D., Chen W., Lai R.

CURRENT ISSUES IN MOLECULAR BIOLOGY. 2021 July; 43 (2):543-557 10.3390/cimb43020041

Li J., Haque M., Shang C., Hassan B., Liu D., Chen W., Lai R.

Current issues in molecular biology. 2021 July; 43 (2):543-557 10.3390/cimb43020041

Huang Y.H., Almowaled M., Li J., Venner C., Sandhu I., Peters A., Lavasanifar A., Lai R.

Current Issues in Molecular Biology. 2021 June; 43 (1):313-323 10.3390/cimb43010026

Mackey J.R., Lai J., Chauhan U., Beauchamp E., Dong W.F., Glubrecht D., Sim Y.W., Ghosh S., Bigras G., Lai R., Berthiaume L.G.

Breast cancer res treat. 2021 February; 186 (1):79-87 10.1007/s10549-020-06037-y

Alshareef A., Peters A.C., Gélébart P., Chen W., Lai R.

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF MOLECULAR SCIENCES. 2021 January; 22 (2):1-10 10.3390/ijms22020893

Alshareef A., Peters A.C., Gélébart P., Chen W., Lai R.

International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2021 January; 22 (2):1-10 10.3390/ijms22020893

Stubbins R.J., Mabilangan C., Rojas-Vasquez M., Lai R.L., Zhu J., Preiksaitis J.P., Peters A.C.

Leukemia and Lymphoma. 2020 December; 61 (14):3319-3330 10.1080/10428194.2020.1808206