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Lucas A Salas, MD, MPH, PhD

Assistant Professor of Epidemiology

Additional Titles/Positions/Affiliations
Investigator Cancer Population Sciences Research Program, Dartmouth Hitchcock- Norris Cotton Cancer Center


Universitat Pompeu Fabra, PhD 2015
Universitat Pompeu Fabra, MPH 2011
Universidad de Antioquia, Epidemiology 2007
Universidad Nacional de Colombia, MD 2001

Quantitative Biomedical Sciences

NIH Biosketch


Contact Information

Professional Interests

The broad goal of Dr. Salas research is to investigate how cell heterogeneity impacts human health and disease, with an emphasis on how genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors model the human epigenome and therefore the cell plasticity. Dr. Salas’ laboratory studies how some key epigenetic mechanisms (DNA methylation, DNA hydroxymethylation, and miRNA alterations) affect gene expression and cancer outcomes, including how the immune cells are altered in this disease. Other research interests include biomarker development, chronic inflammation, and human disease, and how exposures during fetal life alter newborn and childhood outcomes.

Grant Information

W81XWH-20-1-0778, Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs/Department of Defense
Salas Diaz, Lucas A (PI) 09/01/20-08/31/24
Epigenetic modifications of cytosines in clear cell kidney carcinogenesis and survival
P20 GM104416-09/8299, National Institute of General Medical Sciences
Salas Diaz, Lucas A (PI) 10/01/20-01/01/23
A single-cell approach to disentangle tumor microenvironments in short and long survivors to clear cell renal carcinoma

Courses Taught


Mentoring Information

Current trainees:
Ze Zhang, QBS
Steven Pike, IND
Prasoona Karra, Ph.D. (postdoctoral fellow)
David Vargas-Estrella (Neurosciences '23)

Selected Publications


Application of novel breast biospecimen cell type adjustment identifies shared DNA methylation alterations in breast tissue and milk with breast cancer risk factors.
Muse ME, Carroll CD, Salas LA, Karagas MR, Christensen BC
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2023 Feb 10; pii: EPI-22-0405. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-22-0405. Epub 2023 Feb 10.
PMID: 36780234

Umbilical cord blood immune cell profiles in relation to the infant gut microbiome.
Moroishi Y, Salas LA, Zhou J, Baker ER, Hoen AG, Everson TM, Marsit CJ, Madan J, Gui J, Karagas MR
iScience. 2023 Jan 20;26(1):105833. doi: 10.1016/j.isci.2022.105833. Epub 2022 Dec 17.
PMID: 36632065

Comparative analysis of the DNA methylation landscape in CD4, CD8, and B memory lineages.
Zhang Z, Butler R, Koestler DC, Bell-Glenn S, Warrier G, Molinaro AM, Christensen BC, Wiencke JK, Kelsey KT, Salas LA
Clin Epigenetics. 2022 Dec 15;14(1):173. doi: 10.1186/s13148-022-01399-0. Epub 2022 Dec 15.
PMID: 36522672

Hypertension Impacts Peripheral Blood Leukocyte Composition.
Salas LA, Kelsey KT
Hypertension. 2023 Jan;80(1):54-56. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.122.20422. Epub 2022 Dec 7.
PMID: 36475861

HiTIMED: hierarchical tumor immune microenvironment epigenetic deconvolution for accurate cell type resolution in the tumor microenvironment using tumor-type-specific DNA methylation data.
Zhang Z, Wiencke JK, Kelsey KT, Koestler DC, Christensen BC, Salas LA
J Transl Med. 2022 Nov 8;20(1):516. doi: 10.1186/s12967-022-03736-6. Epub 2022 Nov 8.
PMID: 36348337

Evaluation of cross-platform compatibility of a DNA methylation-based glucocorticoid response biomarker.
Tang E, Wiencke JK, Warrier G, Hansen H, McCoy L, Rice T, Bracci PM, Wrensch M, Taylor JW, Clarke JL, Koestler DC, Salas LA, Christensen BC, Kelsey KT, Molinaro AM
Clin Epigenetics. 2022 Oct 28;14(1):136. doi: 10.1186/s13148-022-01352-1. Epub 2022 Oct 28.
PMID: 36307860

DNA methylation as a pharmacodynamic marker of glucocorticoid response and glioma survival.
Wiencke JK, Molinaro AM, Warrier G, Rice T, Clarke J, Taylor JW, Wrensch M, Hansen H, McCoy L, Tang E, Tamaki SJ, Tamaki CM, Nissen E, Bracci P, Salas LA, Koestler DC, Christensen BC, Zhang Z, Kelsey KT
Nat Commun. 2022 Sep 20;13(1):5505. doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-33215-x. Epub 2022 Sep 20.
PMID: 36127421

MethylMasteR: A Comparison and Customization of Methylation-Based Copy Number Variation Calling Software in Cancers Harboring Large Scale Chromosomal Deletions.
Mariani MP, Chen JA, Zhang Z, Pike SC, Salas LA
Front Bioinform. 2022;2 pii: 859828. doi: 10.3389/fbinf.2022.859828. Epub 2022 Apr 12.
PMID: 35573871

A Novel Framework for the Identification of Reference DNA Methylation Libraries for Reference-Based Deconvolution of Cellular Mixtures.
Bell-Glenn S, Thompson JA, Salas LA, Koestler DC
Front Bioinform. 2022;2 pii: 835591. doi: 10.3389/fbinf.2022.835591. Epub 2022 Mar 21.
PMID: 35419567

Phase I Study of High-Dose L-methylfolate in Combination with Temozolomide and Bevacizumab in Recurrent IDH wild-type High-Grade Glioma.
Salas LA, Stewart TG, Mobley BC, Peng C, Liu J, Loganathan SN, Wang J, Ma Y, Berger MS, Absher D, Hu Y, Moots PL, Christensen BC, Clark SW
Cancer Res Commun. 2022 Jan;2(1):1-9. doi: 10.1158/2767-9764.CRC-21-0088.
PMID: 35392283

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