Denise Daley, PhD

Associate Professor
Department of Medicine

Centre for Heart Lung Innovation
St. Paul's Hospital
Room 166 - 1081 Burrard Street
Vancouver, B.C. V6Z 1Y6


Phone Number: 
(604) 682-2344 x62860
Fax Number: 
(604) 806-9274
Email Address: 

Dr. Denise Daley completed a PhD in Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Case Western Reserve University in 2003, followed by post-doctoral training at the University of British Columbia from 2003-2008.  In 2008 she was awarded a Tier II Canadian Research Chair (genetic epidemiology of common complex diseases) and appointed as an Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia and in 2013 she promoted to Associate Professor and her Canadian Research Chair was renewed until 2018.  She has received numerous awards including a Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research Career Scholar Award and the CIHR Institute of Genetics Maud Menten Prize in recognition of her outstanding achievements as a young investigator. Dr. Daley’s interests are in the study of complex diseases such as cancer, asthma, and heart disease, with a focus on gene-gene and gene-environment interactions.

Education and Training

  • BS, Sociology, University of Utah (1989)
  • BS, Medical Sociology, University of Utah (1999)
  • PhD, Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Case Western University (2003)

Area of Interest

Dr. Daley is utilizing cutting-edge statistical, epigenetic, and bioinformatic techniques to obtain a better understanding of how inherited genetic variants and environmental exposures interact to modify the risk for developing disease. Her lab has completed several genome-wide association and sequencing studies to identify genetic susceptibility to common complex diseases such as asthma and COPD, and initiated new studies focued on the evaluation of the "epigenome", or the genome's response to environmental exposures. Dr. Daley's overall research goal is to better understand the etiology of disease and the modifiable environmental risk factors to identify individuals who are at the greatest risk and develop biomarkers and public health interventions.

As part of her research studying why some children get asthma and others do not, Dr. Daley is studying the genetic susceptibility to asthma and other allergic conditions and the complex epigenetic mechanisms that may be involved. She is working to determine what contribution gender, genes, and environment make to the development of asthma and how the epigenome responds to environmental exposures such as tobacco smoke.

Further study of the interaction between genetic and environmental factors will create better understanding of some children develop asthma and others do not, identifying modifiable environmental risk factors which can lead to better treatments for these life-long conditions. To accomplish these goals Dr. Daley is leading an international team of researchers from across North America and the Netherlands, in a collaborative effort to understand the genetic and environmental determinants of asthma.

Dr. Daley is also working on projects to identify genetic and environmental risk factors for colorectal cancer, hypertension, healthy aging, lymphoma, and aortic stenosis.

Selected Publications