Li-Xuan Qin

Associate Attending Biostatistician

Li-Xuan Qin

Office Phone



University of Washington

Current Research Interests

Dr. Qin develops benchmark data, analytic methods, and computational tools for enabling reproducible statistical translations of cancer transcriptomics data. With colleagues at Memorial Sloan Kettering, she has designed and collected unique benchmark datasets to study the issue of data normalization (i.e. ‘treatment’ for data artifacts due to disparate experimental handling) for microarrays and sequencing. She has built simulation algorithms and software tools to show that data normalization can lead to seemingly optimistic classifiers, due to its ‘side-effect’ of over-compressed data variability. She is studying its ‘off-label’ use for other analysis goals such as survival prediction and is developing a data-driven approach for guiding the choice of a suitable normalization method in practice. Her research program is supported by a previous NIH R01 grant and an ongoing NIH R21 grant.  


Dr. Qin collaborates with multidisciplinary investigators engaged in research on soft tissue sarcoma at MSK, for design and analysis of retrospective and prospective studies. She serves as Co-Director of the Biostatistics and Bioinformatics Core of the MSK Soft Tissue Sarcoma SPORE. Over the years she has also worked with investigators studying the molecular basis of other cancer types such as breast, ovarian, and pancreatic cancer.


Dr. Qin is a member of MSK Research Council, reviewing investigator-initiated and industry-sponsored protocols for scientific merit and priority. At the national level, she serves as Editorial Board Member for Journal of Clinical Oncology and Treasurer for Section on Statistics in Genomics and Genetics of American Statistical Association.


  1. Qin LX and Self SG. The clustering of regression models method with applications to gene expression data. Biometrics 2006, 62:526-533.
  2. Qin LX, Zhou Q, Bogomolniy F, Villafania L, Olvera N, Cavatore M, Satagopan JM, Begg CB, Levine DA. Blocking and randomization to improve molecular biomarker discovery. Clinical Cancer Research 2014, 20:3371-3378.
  3. Qin LX, Levine DA. Study design and data normalization to improve the discovery of prognostic molecular biomarkers. BMC Medical Genomics 2016, 9:27.
  4. Qin LX, Huang HC, Begg CB. Cautionary note on using cross-validation for molecular classification. Journal of Clinical Oncology 2016, Epub ahead of print.
  5. Qin LX, Zou J, Shi J, Lee A, Mihailovic A, Farazi TA, Tuschl T, Singer S. Statistical Assessment of Depth Normalization for Small RNA Sequencing. .JCO Clin Cancer Inform. 2020 Jun;4:567-582

Visit PubMed for a full listing of Li-Xuan Qin’s journal articles

Pubmed is an online index of biomedical articles maintained by the U.S. National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health.


Doctors and faculty members often work with pharmaceutical, device, biotechnology, and life sciences companies, and other organizations outside of MSK, to find safe and effective cancer treatments, to improve patient care, and to educate the health care community.

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Li-Xuan Qin discloses the following relationships and financial interests:

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