James A. Warneke, MD, FACS

Associate Professor of Surgery
Vice Chair, Education / Professionalism
Phone Number: 
(520) 694-0887
Patient Appointments: 
(520) 694-2873
Professional Bio: 

Dr. James A. Warneke is an Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery. He joined the faculty at the University of Arizona's College of Medicine in the Department of Surgery, Section of Surgical Oncology in 1991. From 1992-2002, Dr. Warneke was the Medical Student Clerkship Director and then Residency Director from 2001-2009.

Before joining the Department of Surgery here at the University of Arizona, he was an Assistant Professor at the State University of New York. Dr. Warneke completed a Surgical Oncology Fellowship at the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, New York. He completed his residency in General Surgery at the University of Arizona, Department of Surgery, in Tucson, Arizona. Dr. Warneke earned his Bachelor of Science with honors in Biomedical Sciences at the University of California in Riverside, California.

Dr. Warneke is involved in various research endeavors that allow him to continue to provide his patients with the most up-to-date treatment options available. Dr. Warneke’s research involves the treatment of and skin malignancies, especially melanoma and sarcoma.

His other research, conducted in the laboratory, is studying Thymocyte receptor expression in melanoma, which is used to study the progression and prevention of melanoma. He is also co-principal investigator on a program project grant from the National Cancer Institute belonging to David Alberts, MD This grant is for the study of chemoprevention of skin cancer. Dr. Warneke is also a co-investigator on Several Arizona Cancer Center clinical gene therapy studies funded by Vical, Inc., and coordinated by Evan Hersh, MD.


Clinical Information

Clinical Focus: 

Treatment of skin malignancies, specializing in sarcoma and melanoma

Disease or Clinical Specialty: 

Research Information

Research Program: 
Cancer Prevention and Control
Research Focus: 

Dr. Warneke is involved in various research endeavors that will allow him to continue to provide his patients with the most up to date treatment options available. His research interests include treatment of skin malignancies, especially melanoma and sarcoma, as well as chemoprevention of skin cancer.

Selected Publications: 
  1. Alberts DS, Dorr RT, Einspahr JG, Aickin M, Saboda K, Xu MJ, Peng YM, Goldman R, Foote JA, Warneke JA, Salasche S, Roe DJ, Bowden GT. Chemoprevention of human actinic keratoses by topical 2-(Difluoromethyl)-dl-ornithine. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2000 Dec;9(12)1281-6.
  2. Einspahr JG, Nelson MA, Saboda K, Warneke J, Bowden GT, Alberts DS. Modulation of biologic endopoints by topical difluoromethylornithine DFMO), in subjects at high-risk for nonmelanoma skin cancer. Clin Cancer Res. 2002 Jan;8(1):149-55
  3. Barton JK, Gossage KW, Xu W, Ranger-Moore JR, Saboda K, Brooks CA, Duckett LD, Salasche SJ, Warneke JA, Alberts DS. Investigating sun-damaged skin and actinic keratosis with optical coherence tomography: a pilot study. Technol Cancer Res Treat. 2003 Dec;2(6):525-35.
  4. Alberts DS, Ranger-Moore J, Einspahr J, Saboda K, Bozzo P, Liu Y, Xu XC, Lotan R, Warneke J, Salasche S, Stratton S, Levine N, Goldman R, Islas M, Duckett L, Thompson D, Bartels. Safety and Efficacy Study of Dose Intensive Oral Vitamin A in Participants with Sun-Damaged Skin. Clin Cancer Res. 2004 Mar 15;10(6):1875-80.
  5. Holubec H, Payne CM, Bernstein H, Dvorakova K, Bernstein C, Waltmire CN, Warneke JA, Garewal H. Assessment of apoptosis by immunohistochemical markers compared to cellular morphology in ex vivo-stressed colonic mucosa. J Histochem Cytochem. 2005 Feb;53(2):229-35.
  6. Payne, CM, Holubec H, Bernstein C, Bernstein H, Dvorak K, Green SB, Wilson M, Dall’Agnol M, Dvorakova B, Warneke J, Garewal H. Crypt-restricted loss and decreased protein expression of cytochrome C oxidase subunit I as potential hypothesis-driven biomarkers of colon cancer risk. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2005 Sept;14(9): 2066-75.
  7. Hess LM, Saboda K, Malone DC, Salasche S, Warneke J, Alberts DS: Adherence assessment using medication weight in a phase IIb clinical trial of difluoromethylornithine for the chemoprevention of skin cancer. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 14(11 Pt 1):2579-2583, 2005.
  8. Bernstein H, Prasad A, Holubec H, Bernstein C, Payne CM, Ramsey L, Dvorakova K, Wilson M, Warneke JA, Garewal H: Reduced Pms2 expression in non-neoplastic flat mucosa from patients with colon cancer correlates with reduced apoptosis competence. Appl Immunohistochem Mol Morphol. 2006 Jun; 14(2): 166-72.
  9. Shi J, Kahle A, Hershey JW, Honchak BM, Warneke JA, Leong SP, Nelson MA: Decreased expression of eukaryotic initiation factor 3f deregulates translation and apoptosis in tumor cells. Oncogene. 2006 Aug 10;25 (35):4923-36. Epub 2006 Mar 13.
  10. Einspahr JG, Xu MJ, Warneke J, Saboda K, Ranger-Moore J, Bozzo P, Duckett L, Goldman R, Lin P, Buckmeier J, Alberts DS: Reproducibility and expression of skin biomarkers in sun-damaged skin and actinic keratoses. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 15(10):1841-1848, 2006.
  11. Einspahr JG, Thomas TL, Saboda K, Nickoloff BJ, Warneke J, Curiel-Lewandrowski C, Ranger-Moore J, Duckett L, Bangert J, Fruehauf JP, Alberts DS: Expression of vascular endothelial growth factor in early cutaneous melanocytic lesion progression. Cancer 110(11):2519-2527, 2007.
  12. Korde V, Bonnema G, Xu W, Krishnamurthy C, Ranger-Moore J, Saboda K, Slayton L, Salasche S, Warneke J, Alberts D, Barton JK: Using optical coherence tomography to evaluate skin sun damage and precancer. Lasers in Surgery and Medicine 39(9):687-695, 2007.
  13. Stratton SP, Saboda K, Myrdal PB, Gupta A, McKenzie NE, Brooks C, Salasche SJ, Warneke JA, Ranger-Moore J, Bozzo PD, Blanchard J, Einspahr JE, Dorr RT, Levine N, Alberts DS: Phase 1 study of topical perillyl alcohol cream for chemoprevention of skin cancer. Nutr Cancer 60(3):325-330, 2008
  14. Einspahr JG, Bowden GT, Alberts DS, McKenzie N, Saboda K, Warneke J, Salasche S, Ranger-Moore J, Curiel-Lewandrowski C, Nagle RB, Nickoloff BJ, Brooks C, Dong Z, Stratton SP: Cross-validation of murine UV signal transduction pathways in human skin. Photochem Photobiol 84(2):463-476, 2008.
  15. Bedogni B, Warneke JA, Nickoloff BJ, Giaccia AJ, Powell MB: Notch 1 is an effector of Akt and hypoxia in melanoma development. J Clin Invest. 2008 Nov; 118 (11): 3660-70. Epub 2008 Oct 16.

Professional Information

Positions and Honors: 
  • 1993-94, Dean’s Teaching Scholar, University of Arizona, College of Medicine
  • 1994, Virginia Furrow Award: Feedback of Clinical Competence Using an OSCE during the Third Year Family Medicine and Surgical Clerkships
  • 1996, Included in The Best Doctors in the West
  • 2000, Resident Role Model Award
  • 2008, Teaching Award, University of Arizona, College of Medicine
Other Experience and Professional Memberships/Affiliations: 
  • American College of Surgeons
  • Association for Academic Surgery
  • Society of Surgical Oncology
  • Southwest Oncology Group
  • Tucson Surgical Society
Board Certifications & Licenses: 

American Board of Surgery

Academic Information

Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY
University of Arizona, Department of Surgery, Tucson, AZ
Medical School: 
University of California, Los Angeles, CA
Undergraduate School: 
University of California, Riverside, CA