Lihua Liu, PhD

Associate Professor of Clinical Population and Public Health Sciences

Director and Principle Investigator of the Surveillance Epidemiology End Results (SEER) Program

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Dr. Liu holds a Ph.D. in Demography and Medical Sociology from the University of Southern California. She worked as a research scientist at the Los Angeles Cancer Surveillance Program (CSP) for many years, before joining the faculty of the Dept. of Preventive Medicine as an Assistant Professor of Clinical Preventive Medicine in 2008. Her interest in population and health found the ideal laboratory at the CSP, the population-based cancer registry for Los Angeles County. She was fascinated by the dramatic differences in cancer risk by race/ethnicity and socioeconomic status and learned to understand the values and challenges of using cancer registry data for research. She has contributed significantly to the enhancements of cancer registry data nationwide through participation of the developments of population estimates by detailed racial/ethnic groups and better identification of race/ethnicity in cancer registries. Her research interest is in the impact of social, economic, cultural, behavioral, and environmental factors on the development, diagnosis, and survival of cancer. Compelled by the alarming fact that immigrants in the U.S. quickly lose their healthy advantage after arrival, Dr. Liu assembled a multidisciplinary team with 12 faculty members from 8 USC schools to propose a new public health initiative to promote healthy behaviors and lifestyles in immigrants and to enrich and redefine American way of living. This visionary proposal recently received the USC Collaboration Fund Award. The group is poised to explore the new path and to inspire and attract interested faculty and students to join the effort.


  • Distance Between Home and the Admitting Hospital and Its Effect on Survival of Low Socioeconomic Status Population With Staphylococcus aureus Bacteremia Public Health Rep. 2022 Jan-Feb; 137(1):110-119. . View in PubMed
  • Evidence for racial/ethnic disparities in emergency department visits following breast cancer surgery among women in California: a population-based study Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2021 Jun; 187(3):831-841. . View in PubMed
  • Assessing Disparities in Lung Cancer Incidence for Gender Minority Individuals Using California Cancer Registry Data Chest. 2021 06; 159(6):2491-2493. . View in PubMed
  • Presentation, Management, and Outcomes Across the Rural-Urban Continuum for Hepatocellular Carcinoma JNCI Cancer Spectr. 2021 02; 5(1). . View in PubMed
  • A Reappraisal of Sex-Specific Cancer Survival Trends Among Adolescents and Young Adults in the United States J Natl Cancer Inst. 2019 05 01; 111(5):509-518. . View in PubMed
  • Response to Siegel et al J Natl Cancer Inst. 2019 06 01; 111(6):635-636. . View in PubMed
  • Striking Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Liver Cancer Incidence Rates and Temporal Trends in California, 1988-2012 J Natl Cancer Inst. 2018 11 01; 110(11):1259-1269. . View in PubMed
  • Multiple Sclerosis Mortality by Race/Ethnicity, Age, Sex, and Time Period in the United States, 1999-2015 Neuroepidemiology. 2018; 50(1-2):35-40. . View in PubMed
  • Designing a Patient Empowerment Program for Chinese Immigrants Health Soc Work. 2017 May 01; 42(2):121-124. . View in PubMed
  • Stomach Cancer Disparity among Korean Americans by Tumor Characteristics: Comparison with Non-Hispanic Whites, Japanese Americans, South Koreans, and Japanese Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2017 04; 26(4):587-596. . View in PubMed
  • Particulate matter air pollution and liver cancer survival Int J Cancer. 2017 08 15; 141(4):744-749. . View in PubMed
  • Disparities in colorectal cancer incidence among Latino subpopulations in California defined by country of origin Cancer Causes Control. 2016 Feb; 27(2):147-55. . View in PubMed
  • Air pollution affects lung cancer survival Thorax. 2016 10; 71(10):891-8. . View in PubMed
  • The impact of follow-up type and missed deaths on population-based cancer survival studies for Hispanics and Asians J Natl Cancer Inst Monogr. 2014 Nov; 2014(49):210-7. . View in PubMed
  • The global significance of China’s cancer burden and control effort Ann Transl Med. 2014 Jul; 2(7):64. . View in PubMed
  • Cancer incidence trends among native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders in the United States, 1990-2008 J Natl Cancer Inst. 2013 Aug 07; 105(15):1086-95. . View in PubMed
  • Invasive breast cancer incidence trends by detailed race/ethnicity and age Int J Cancer. 2012 Jan 15; 130(2):395-404. . View in PubMed
  • Challenges in identifying Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders in population-based cancer registries in the US. J Immigr Minor Health. 2011 Oct; 13(5):860-6. . View in PubMed
  • Oral squamous cell carcinoma incidence by subsite among diverse racial and ethnic populations in California Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod. 2008 Apr; 105(4):470-80. . View in PubMed
  • The association between elevated EphB4 expression, smoking status, and advanced-stage disease in patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2006 Oct; 132(10):1053-9. . View in PubMed
  • Childhood cancer patients’ access to cooperative group cancer programs: a population-based study Cancer. 2003 Mar 01; 97(5):1339-45. . View in PubMed
  • Rapidly rising breast cancer incidence rates among Asian-American women Int J Cancer. 2002 Jun 10; 99(5):747-50. . View in PubMed