Steven Artandi tapped to lead Stanford Cancer Institute

A cancer biologist, Artandi studies the role of telomerase in stem cells and cancer. He replaces outgoing director Beverly Mitchell.

- By Krista Conger

Steven Artandi

Steven Artandi, MD, PhD, professor of medicine and of biochemistry at the School of Medicine, has been named the new director of the Stanford Cancer Institute, effective today.

Artandi replaces Beverly Mitchell, MD, who has served as director for the past 10 years. Mitchell, a professor of medicine, will continue her involvement with the institute as senior adviser, researcher and mentor.

“A strategic thinker and collaborative physician-scientist, Dr. Artandi’s understanding of the opportunities to develop synergies between the elements of our tripartite mission — excellence in research, patient care and education — make him uniquely qualified to further the SCI’s goal of translating Stanford discoveries into individualized cancer care,” said Lloyd Minor, MD, dean of the School of Medicine. “His work is already producing new insights into the origins of cancer, revealing how aspiring cancers circumvent critical bottlenecks encountered during carcinogenesis, and leading to new therapies with the potential to treat many of the most refractory human cancers.”

Artandi, who holds the Jerome and Daisy Low Gilbert Professorship, is a cancer biologist whose research focuses on the role played by the enzyme telomerase in cancer, aging and stem cell biology. 

“I’m very honored to be the next director of the Stanford Cancer Institute, particularly at this exciting juncture in the history of cancer research and cancer therapy,” Artandi said. “We are entering a period during which major translational discoveries will transform our approach to treating cancer patients. Stanford has remarkable strengths in innovation, basic science, clinical medicine and translation. We’re also fortunate to have extraordinary people, including faculty, trainees, nurses and staff. At SCI, we’re uniquely positioned to drive forward the next wave of discoveries to benefit our cancer patients.”

Artandi came to Stanford in 2000 after completing a fellowship in medical oncology at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute and Massachusetts General Hospital. In 2015, he received an outstanding investigator award from the National Cancer Institute. He earned his MD and PhD in microbiology in 1995 from Columbia University. 

“Dr. Artandi is a highly accomplished physician-scientist who will take the Stanford Cancer Institute to the next level,” said Mary Hawn, MD, professor and chair of surgery at Stanford. “He has innovative plans to translate science to patients that will markedly impact care.” 

Hawn and Thomas Montine, MD, PhD, professor and chair of pathology, co-chaired the search committee for the new director. 

“We are delighted to have Dr. Artandi as the next director for the Stanford Cancer Institute,” Montine said. “His leadership will doubtless help the institute continue to improve outcomes for patients facing cancer diagnosis and treatment.”

About Stanford Medicine

Stanford Medicine is an integrated academic health system comprising the Stanford School of Medicine and adult and pediatric health care delivery systems. Together, they harness the full potential of biomedicine through collaborative research, education and clinical care for patients. For more information, please visit

2023 ISSUE 3

Exploring ways AI is applied to health care