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Available Studentships

PhD Studentship - Clonal and cell state heterogeneity in breast cancer xenografts (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Oct 15, 2019.

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (CRUK CI) is a joint venture between the Charity, Cancer Research UK, and the University of Cambridge. The Institute has excellent state-of-the-art facilities and research ranges from basic cancer biology and computational biology through to translational research and clinical application.

Graduate students play a pivotal role in the continuing success of our research programmes and gaining a studentship in the Institute is an excellent opportunity to start a research career in an environment committed to training outstanding cancer research scientists of the future. For further information, go to: https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/jobs-and-studentships/postgraduate-study

Professor Carlos Caldas, Head of the research group focussing on the Functional genomics of breast cancer, wishes to appoint a student, to commence study in October 2020, to work on the project entitled: Clonal and cell state heterogeneity in breast cancer xenografts. For further information about Professor Caldas' group, go to https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/research-groups/caldas-group

Project details:

Members of the Caldas research team have developed a biobank of patient-derived breast cancer xenografts (Bruna et al, Cell 2016) that represent the inter- and intra-tumour heterogeneity of human breast cancers (Curtis et al, Nature 2012; Pereira et al, Nat Commun 2016; Rueda et al, Nature 2019). These models are ideal tools to study clonal and cell state heterogeneity and how it affects tumour behaviour (dormancy, metastases, therapy resistance). The student will work on new clonal and cell state marking approaches, using barcoding and single cell analysis, to study evolution of the xenografts in vivo in response to perturbations (drugs, radiation, CRISPR screens). The aim is to unravel the mechanisms of the diverse tumour responses.

Further reading:

Bruna A, Rueda OM, Greenwood W, et al. A Biobank of Breast Cancer Explants with Preserved Intra-tumor Heterogeneity to Screen Anticancer Compounds. Cell 2016; 167 (1):260-74.

Curtis C, Shah SP, Chin SF, et al. The genomic and transcriptomic architecture of 2,000 breast tumours reveals novel subgroups. Nature 2012; 486 (7403):346-52.

Pereira B, Chin SF, Rueda OM, et al. The somatic mutation profiles of 2,433 breast cancers refine their genomic and transcriptomic landscapes. Nat Communications 2016; 7 (11479).

Rueda OM, Sammut SJ, Seoane JA, Chin SF et al, Dynamics of breast-cancer relapse reveal late-recurring ER-positive genomic subgroups. Nature 2019; 567 (7748): 399-404.

Preferred skills/knowledge

Experience both in wet lab and dry lab is desirable; however outstanding individuals with either a purely quantitative background such as Physics or Mathematics, or experimental laboratory background such as Biotechnology are also welcome to apply. The successful candidate must be strongly motivated to drive an independent research project, but also be a highly collaborative individual. A strong interest in translational cancer research is needed to work in the Caldas laboratory.

Funding

This project is funded by a Cancer Research UK studentship that includes full funding for University and College fees and a stipend of £19,000 per annum.

Eligibility

No nationality restrictions apply to Cancer Research UK funded studentships. Applications are invited from recent graduates or final year undergraduates who hold or expect to gain a first/upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject from any recognised university worldwide.

How to apply

All applications need to be made using the University Applicant Portal. Please visit: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcrpdmsc for further information about the course and to access the applicant portal.

To complete your on-line application, you need to provide the following:

Reference Request: The names and contact details of two academic referees who have agreed to act on your behalf.

Research: If you wish to be considered for more than one studentship, please enter the names of all of the supervisors you wish to consider your application in the 'Research summary' text box. If you only wish your application to be considered by a single supervisor, then please enter their name in the 'Research Supervisor' text box. Please describe your past 'Research experience' in the appropriate text box.

Course Specific Questions: Your statement of interest (limit of 2,500 characters) should explain why you wish to be considered for the studentship and which qualities and experience you will bring to the role. Please also state how you learned of the studentship.

Supporting Documents: Please upload your CV (PDF file), which should include a list of the examinations taken at undergraduate level and if possible, your examination results

Deadline

The closing date for applications is 30 November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in January 2020.

Please quote reference SW21080 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentship - Biology&Ecology of Asia - 2020/21 (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Oct 08, 2019.

A PhD Studentship in the Biology and Ecology of Asia, covering the University Composition Fee at the Home/EU rate, a stipend at the UKRI rate for 4 years, and £5k pa towards research costs for 3 years, is offered at the Department of Zoology (University of Cambridge) to start in October 2020. Candidates must carry out research that is relevant to the biology and ecology of Asia. Projects on offer can be found on the list of available projects. Applicants are also invited to suggest their own projects; please visit our research pages (https://www.zoo.cam.ac.uk/research) for more information on our supervisors and their research areas.

For more information please visit our website via the following link: https://www.zoo.cam.ac.uk/study/postgraduate

Eligibility: Applicants to the Department of Zoology graduate programme must have:

  1. at least a 2.1 in an Honours degree or equivalent (e.g., CGPA 3.5/4.0) in a relevant subject

  2. two excellent academic references

  3. fluency in the English language- recent IELTS test with an overall band score of at least 7.0 with not less than 7.0 in speaking, listening and writing, and 6.5 in reading.

For more details of the University's entrance requirements see the Graduate Admissions website via the following link http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/students/gradadmissions/prospec/studying/entryreq/

Candidates of any nationality/residency may apply, but a successful Overseas applicant would need to secure additional funds from other sources to cover the higher fee level. The most current estimates of costs can be found on the Graduate Admissions fees page (http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/finance).

Application procedure: To be considered for these studentships, candidates must have applied to the University of Cambridge via this link (https://www.zoo.cam.ac.uk/study/postgraduate) by 12 noon on 7 January 2020 We would advise candidates to contact their proposed supervisor directly before applying.

Please note that to be considered, you must also have uploaded all of your supporting documentation by this date.

Interviews are likely to be held in February/March 2020.

If you have any questions, please contact the Department of Zoology - Graduate Administration team (graduate@zoo.cam.ac.uk)

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 4 years.

Please quote reference PF20997 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentships in Marine Biology - 2020/21 x 2 (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Oct 08, 2019.

Two PhD Studentships in Marine Biology, covering the University Composition Fee at the Home/EU rate, a stipend at the UKRI rate for 4 years, and £5k pa towards research costs for 3 years, are offered at the Department of Zoology (University of Cambridge) to start in October 2020.

Candidates must carry out research that is relevant to marine biology. Projects on offer can be found on the list of available projects. Applicants are also invited to suggest their own projects; please visit our research pages: www.zoo.cam.ac.uk/research for more information on our supervisors and their research areas.

At least one of these studentships will be under the supervision of Dr James Herbert-Read (www.zoo.cam.ac.uk/directory/dr-james-herbert-read).

For more information please visit our website: www.zoo.cam.ac.uk/study/postgraduate

Eligibility:

Applicants to the Department of Zoology graduate programme must have: 1. at least a 2.1 in an Honours degree or equivalent (e.g., CGPA 3.5/4.0) in a relevant subject 2. two excellent academic references 3. fluency in the English language ¿ recent IELTS test with an overall band score of at least 7.0 with not less than 7.0 in speaking, listening and writing, and 6.5 in reading.

For more details of the University's entrance requirements see the Graduate Admissions website: www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/application-process/entry-requirements.

Candidates of any nationality/residency may apply, but a successful overseas applicant would need to secure additional funds from other sources to cover the higher fee level. The most current estimates of costs can be found on the Graduate Admissions fees page www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/finance.

Application procedure:

To be considered for these studentships, candidates must have applied to the University of Cambridge (following the normal application process: www.zoo.cam.ac.uk/study/postgraduate) by 12 noon on 7 January 2020.

We would advise candidates to contact their proposed supervisor directly before applying.

Please note that to be considered, you must also have uploaded all of your supporting documentation by this date.

Interviews are likely to be held in February/March 2020

If you have any questions, please contact the Department of Zoology - Graduate Administration team (email: graduate@zoo.cam.ac.uk)

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 4 years.

Please quote reference PF20999 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

CRUK International Alliance for Cancer Early Detection (ACED) MPhil and PhD Studentships

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Oct 07, 2019.

4-year MPhil + PhD studentships in Public Health or Social Sciences relating to the Early Detection of Cancer at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Centre Early Detection Programme

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Centre Early Detection Programme https://www.earlydetectioncambridge.org.uk/ is a multidisciplinary research initiative whose mission is to increase survival from cancer and improve quality of life through early detection and intervention. The Programme, based at the University of Cambridge, is a partner in the Cancer Research UK International Alliance for Cancer Early Detection (ACED); a unique, science-led £40M investment that will create new trans-atlantic collaborations and ideas that will transform the field. The Programme recognises the importance of public health research to explore the unmet need, strategies and impact of Cancer Early Detection, as well as the societal impact and ethics of work in this area https://www.earlydetectioncambridge.org.uk/research/projects/understanding-societal-implications

To support this work in Cambridge, ACED funding is available for non-clinical PhD students to be hosted at the University of Cambridge in the Department of Public Health and Primary Care (DPHPC) https://www.phpc.cam.ac.uk/, the Department of Social Anthropology https://www.socanth.cam.ac.uk/, or the Department of History and Philosophy of Science https://www.hps.cam.ac.uk/. Students will join the cohort of PhD students being trained by the CRUK Cambridge Centre and will carry out cancer-related research in population health sciences or in social sciences. They will also become members of the active CRUK Cambridge Centre Early Detection Programme, which offers regular training opportunities and networking events, and they will have the opportunity to attend an Early Detection Summer School.

The 4-year funding can be applied to a 1-year MPhil + 3 years PhD, with the MPhil being one of the existing programmes in the DPHPC (Epidemiology, Public Health or Primary Care Research) in Social Anthropology or History and Philosophy of Science and Medicine. Students applying who already have an equivalent degree or training could start the PhD directly without doing an MPhil.

Three fully-funded PhD studentships are available for non-clinical applicants, to commence in October 2020. Support includes a stipend at £19,000 per annum, research costs and fees at home/EU rates.

PhD project topics offered are (See https://crukcambridgecentre.org.uk/content/cruk-international-alliance-cancer-early-detection-aced):

Risk stratification in the bowel cancer screening programme: public acceptability and potential impact on uptake (Supervisor: Dr Juliet Usher-Smith).

Evaluation of risk-stratified approaches to breast cancer screening in the UK: health economic analysis and discrete choice experiment (Supervisors: Professor Antonis Antoniou and Professor Steve Morris)

Rare variants and cancer susceptibility & Sub clonal mosaicism, cancer therapy and susceptibility (Supervisor: Professor Doug Easton).

The ethics and epistemology of risk stratification (Supervisor: Dr Stephen John). Perceptions of cancer and competing hierarchies of risk among members of socially disadvantaged groups in the UK (Supervisor: Dr Maryon McDonald).

Applications, including a CV and a Reasons for Applying statement (2,500 character limit), must be made via the University of Cambridge Graduate Admissions website https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvocmpmsc (please note that this is applying for an MPhil in Oncology but this will be changed to the preferred MPhil or PhD course in a specific department upon being successfully awarded a studentship).

Applicants can state their preferred project of interest, if they so wish, and this should be clearly stated as part of your Reasons for Applying statement. The deadline for applications is 15th November 2019.

We invite applications from UK, EU and non-EU students for these non-clinical studentships. Please ensure you meet the University of Cambridge entrance requirements. https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvocpdcan/requirements

Interview and selection process Applicants will be informed of the outcome of their application via email by late December 2019.

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to attend a day of interviews at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/ on w/b 13th January 2020.

You will be interviewed by a panel of Principal Investigators and you will be given the opportunity to visit the relevant department(s) or institute(s) for your project of interest.

Following your interview you will be informed of the outcome via email.

Key dates

The deadline for applications is 15th November 2019.

Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application by late December 2019.

Shortlisted applicants will be invited for interview w/b 13th January 2020.

Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their interview at the beginning of February 2020 and successful applicants will receive a formal offer letter by mid-February 2020.

If you have general enquiries about the CRUK Cambridge Centre non-clinical MRes + PhD studentships or the application process, please contact trainingprogramme@crukcambridgecentre.org.uk.

Please quote reference RD20971 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

MRC Cancer Unit PhD Studentship

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 30, 2019.

The Medical Research Council Cancer Unit at the University of Cambridge is a leading centre for cancer research in the UK. Our aim is to undertake research that advances our understanding of the earliest steps in the emergence of cancer, and to use this knowledge for early diagnosis, risk stratification and clinical intervention, through the development of innovative enabling technologies. The Unit is based within the Hutchison/MRC Research Centre on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, and possesses excellent research facilities, strong collaborations with clinicians and colleagues in other disciplines, and a vibrant and supportive working environment.

We have the following PhD projects on offer for entry in October 2020, with funding available through studentships from the Medical Research Council. Eligibility and Funding criteria apply and are stated below.

Uncovering the (epi)Genomic regulation of cancer forming processes using integrative computational genomics and deep learning approaches - Dr Shamith Samarajiwa

Mutations in oncogenes and tumour suppressor genes, copy number changes and other genetic aberrations, together with anomalous epigenomic modifications all conspire to alter gene expression programmes, perturb normal cellular processes and promote tumour formation. Perturbation of signaling pathways and networks, transcription factor binding patterns, reconfiguration of the three dimensional chromatin architecture, and changes in regulatory element activity and interactions enable tumour formation and cancer progression. Understanding these processes will enable development of therapies as well as development of cancer early detection applications. This project will use integrative computational approaches and large biomedical data-sets to develop and apply computational biology and machine learning (including novel deep learning solutions) methods to understand the complex systems involved in cancer formation and progression.

This project will bring together big data analytical, modelling, data-mining and visualisation approaches.

Novel integrative methods will be developed and applied to multi-omic cancer datasets. Unique data integration approaches will be applied including modelling biological systems as knowledge graphs.

Cutting edge computational biology and genomics approaches will be combined with deep learning methods (Convolutional neural networks (CNNs), generative methods such as variational autoencoders (VAEs) and generative adversarial networks (GANs) together with other machine learning methods.

Requirements:

A masters degree in a quantitative field (data science, machine learning, deep learning, computational biology, mathematics, statistics or engineering) is required. Candidates with Biomedical or Medical degrees with exceptional (R and/or Python) programming and analytical skills with a good understanding of cancer biology, immunology or metabolism are also welcome to apply.

More information about the research undertaken in the Samarajiwa group can be found here: https://www.mrc-cu.cam.ac.uk/research/Shamith-Samarajiwa-folder Samarajiwa lab: https://www.samarajiwa-lab.org

Eligibility and Funding

We welcome applications from those holding or expecting to obtain at least an upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant scientific subject. These studentships are funded by the Medical Research Council and are open to UK and EU applicants only. Other international students are not eligible to apply. UK applicants will be eligible to receive full funding of University and College fees and a stipend of £18,000 p.a. EU applicants will be funded on a fees-only basis, unless they meet the MRC's eligibility criteria for residency (visit the MRC website for further details: www.mrc.ac.uk/skills-careers/studentships/studentship-guidance/student-eligibility-requirements/). Successful applicants will be registered with the University of Cambridge.

How to apply

All applications will need to be made through the University Application Portal and will entail an application fee of £65. Please visit: www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcupdmsc/apply for further information about the programme and to access the Applicant Portal. Please note that the course code for PhD applications to the MRC Cancer Unit is MDCU22. Whilst making your online application please make it clear which project area(s) and principal investigator(s) you are interested in working with. Your online application will need to include:

  • A CV, including full details of all University course grades to date.
  • Contact details for two academic or professional referees.
  • A personal statement outlining your interest in a specific project area, what you hope to achieve from a PhD, and your research experience to date.

The above information must be provided under relevant sections on the application portal.

Completing the Research section

If you are applying for one project only: in the 'Proposed title of Research' textbox, insert the project title. If you wish to apply for more than one project, insert 'Cancer Research'.

If you are applying to more than one supervisor: in the 'Proposed Supervisor' textbox, please insert the initials of the Supervisors you wish to consider your application and in the 'Research Summary' textbox, please insert the project titles being offered by those Supervisors.

Please describe your research experience in the appropriate textbox. The closing date for applications is 15th November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December.

Please contact studentships@mrc-cu.cam.ac.uk with any other enquiries concerning studentships or eligibility criteria.

Please quote reference SK20885 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

MRC Cancer Unit PhD Studentship

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 30, 2019.

The Medical Research Council Cancer Unit at the University of Cambridge is a leading centre for cancer research in the UK. Our aim is to undertake research that advances our understanding of the earliest steps in the emergence of cancer, and to use this knowledge for early diagnosis, risk stratification and clinical intervention, through the development of innovative enabling technologies. The Unit is based within the Hutchison/MRC Research Centre on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, and possesses excellent research facilities, strong collaborations with clinicians and colleagues in other disciplines, and a vibrant and supportive working environment.

We have the following PhD projects on offer for entry in October 2020, with funding available through studentships from the Medical Research Council. Eligibility and Funding criteria apply and are stated below.

Clonal dynamics of a metastatic benign cancer - Dr Ben Hall

Dermal cylindroma is a rare inherited disease of multiple benign, disfiguring tumors caused by inherited mutations in the gene CYLD. These typically grow on the head and neck, causing extreme discomfort to patients. The tumours that develop are highly heterogeneous and have distinct columnar structures. Surprisingly, benign metastases have been reported suggesting that cylindroma may offer insights into the interaction of the tumour and the environment associated with metastasis in cancer more generally.

In this studentship the patterns of mutation observed in two key (DNMT3A and BCOR) taken from biopsies will be analysed to model the growth and development of cylindroma. The student will build models of clonal growth and competition in the disease using data shared by clinical collaborators in the Nik-Zainal group. Over the course of the PhD the student will identify the underlying hierarchy of cells, before investigating the role of different genes in the development and progression of the disease.

More information about the research undertaken in the Hall Group can be found here: https://www.mrc-cu.cam.ac.uk/research/benjamin-hall-folder

Eligibility and Funding

We welcome applications from those holding or expecting to obtain at least an upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant scientific subject. These studentships are funded by the Medical Research Council and are open to UK and EU applicants only. Other international students are not eligible to apply. UK applicants will be eligible to receive full funding of University and College fees and a stipend of £18,000 p.a. EU applicants will be funded on a fees-only basis, unless they meet the MRC's eligibility criteria for residency (visit the MRC website for further details: www.mrc.ac.uk/skills-careers/studentships/studentship-guidance/student-eligibility-requirements/). Successful applicants will be registered with the University of Cambridge.

How to apply

All applications will need to be made through the University Application Portal and will entail an application fee of £65. Please visit: www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcupdmsc/apply for further information about the programme and to access the Applicant Portal. Please note that the course code for PhD applications to the MRC Cancer Unit is MDCU22. Whilst making your online application please make it clear which project area(s) and principal investigator(s) you are interested in working with. Your online application will need to include:

  • A CV, including full details of all University course grades to date.
  • Contact details for two academic or professional referees.
  • A personal statement outlining your interest in a specific project area, what you hope to achieve from a PhD, and your research experience to date.

The above information must be provided under relevant sections on the application portal.

Completing the Research section

If you are applying for one project only: in the 'Proposed title of Research' textbox, insert the project title. If you wish to apply for more than one project, insert 'Cancer Research'.

If you are applying to more than one supervisor: in the 'Proposed Supervisor' textbox, please insert the initials of the Supervisors you wish to consider your application and in the 'Research Summary' textbox, please insert the project titles being offered by those Supervisors.

Please describe your research experience in the appropriate textbox.

The closing date for applications is 15th November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December.

Please contact studentships@mrc-cu.cam.ac.uk with any other enquiries concerning studentships or eligibility criteria.

Please quote reference SK20888 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

MRC Cancer Unit PhD Studentship

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 30, 2019.

The Medical Research Council Cancer Unit at the University of Cambridge is a leading centre for cancer research in the UK. Our aim is to undertake research that advances our understanding of the earliest steps in the emergence of cancer, and to use this knowledge for early diagnosis, risk stratification and clinical intervention, through the development of innovative enabling technologies. The Unit is based within the Hutchison/MRC Research Centre on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, and possesses excellent research facilities, strong collaborations with clinicians and colleagues in other disciplines, and a vibrant and supportive working environment.

We have the following PhD projects on offer for entry in October 2020, with funding available through studentships from the Medical Research Council. Eligibility and Funding criteria apply and are stated below.

Oncogene-induced reprogramming of heterotypic cellular interactions - Dr Alessandro Esposito and Dr Jacqueline Shields

The accumulation of mutations during the development of cancer subverts normal cell-to-cell communication and cellular decisions. Deciphering the mechanisms that underlie cell decisions such as fate determination, cell cycle regulation and cellular migration is critical not only to identifying the molecular determinants of disease but also to the development of future cancer therapies. In particular, our understanding of the role and mechanisms of heterotypic cellular interactions during oncogenesis and therapy is severely lacking, hampered by methodological challenges associated with monitoring cell-to-cell communication between individual cells over time.

Dr Alessandro Esposito and his team have established techniques to enable live imaging of biochemical activities with subcellular resolution, light-inducible control of enzymatic activities, tracking and modelling of cellular populations. We are applying these unique tools to the study of how oncogenic KRAS mutations alter cell signalling and metabolism, and cellular phenotypes during early oncogenesis. Dr Jacqueline Shields and her team investigate how the "normal cells" of the tumour microenvironment - the stroma - regulate immune activity from early stages of disease to promote carcinogenesis. To do this, we examine both the primary tumour and draining lymph nodes developing complex culture systems and organ-on-a-chip models to monitor heterotypic cell interactions with low invasiveness.

This project will exploit these novel technologies to understand how oncogenic KRAS mutations alter cell-to-cell interactions between wild-type and mutant cells or between mutant cells and stroma contributing to the deregulation of tissue homeostasis during early oncogenesis. The project will offer a unique opportunity to train across disciplines through a strong partnership between groups specializing in oncology, engineering and biophysics.

More information about the research undertaken in the Esposito and Shields groups can be found here: https://quantitative-biology.org www.mrc-cu.cam.ac.uk/research/Jacqui-Shields-folder

Eligibility and Funding

We welcome applications from those holding or expecting to obtain at least an upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant scientific subject. These studentships are funded by the Medical Research Council and are open to UK and EU applicants only. Other international students are not eligible to apply. UK applicants will be eligible to receive full funding of University and College fees and a stipend of £18,000 p.a. EU applicants will be funded on a fees-only basis, unless they meet the MRC's eligibility criteria for residency (visit the MRC website for further details: www.mrc.ac.uk/skills-careers/studentships/studentship-guidance/student-eligibility-requirements/). Successful applicants will be registered with the University of Cambridge.

How to apply

All applications will need to be made through the University Application Portal and will entail an application fee of £65. Please visit: www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcupdmsc/apply for further information about the programme and to access the Applicant Portal. Please note that the course code for PhD applications to the MRC Cancer Unit is MDCU22. Whilst making your online application please make it clear which project area(s) and principal investigator(s) you are interested in working with. Your online application will need to include:

  • A CV, including full details of all University course grades to date.
  • Contact details for two academic or professional referees.
  • A personal statement outlining your interest in a specific project area, what you hope to achieve from a PhD, and your research experience to date.

The above information must be provided under relevant sections on the application portal.

Completing the Research section

If you are applying for one project only: in the 'Proposed title of Research' textbox, insert the project title. If you wish to apply for more than one project, insert 'Cancer Research'.

If you are applying to more than one supervisor: in the 'Proposed Supervisor' textbox, please insert the initials of the Supervisors you wish to consider your application and in the 'Research Summary' textbox, please insert the project titles being offered by those Supervisors.

Please describe your research experience in the appropriate textbox. The closing date for applications is 15th November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December.

Please contact studentships@mrc-cu.cam.ac.uk with any other enquiries concerning studentships or eligibility criteria.

Please quote reference SK20887 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

MRC Cancer Unit PhD Studentship

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 30, 2019.

The Medical Research Council Cancer Unit at the University of Cambridge is a leading centre for cancer research in the UK. Our aim is to undertake research that advances our understanding of the earliest steps in the emergence of cancer, and to use this knowledge for early diagnosis, risk stratification and clinical intervention, through the development of innovative enabling technologies. The Unit is based within the Hutchison/MRC Research Centre on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, and possesses excellent research facilities, strong collaborations with clinicians and colleagues in other disciplines, and a vibrant and supportive working environment.

We have the following PhD projects on offer for entry in October 2020, with funding available through studentships from the Medical Research Council. Eligibility and Funding criteria apply and are stated below.

Early detection of clinically-relevant mutational signatures - Dr Serena Nik-Zainal

Mutational signatures in human cancers are the final outcome of combinations of DNA damage and DNA repair processes. Direct DNA damage incurred by tobacco smoke, UV light or other environmental mutagens and direct abnormalities of a DNA repair pathway like homologous recombination (HR) repair or mismatch repair (MMR) leave characteristic imprints on the genome. However, abnormal cellular processes like replication stress can result in mutagenesis as well, albeit indirectly. Mutational signatures are therefore simply a read-out of a spectrum of cellular abnormalities and can thus be thought of and exploited in that way. In this studentship, which shall be a combined wet-lab/dry-lab project, we aim to identify on-going mutational signatures that can be used as a surrogate for particular cancer development processes and determine signatures that may be informative for therapeutic intervention. Apart from identifying clinically relevant mutational signatures, we aim to design mutational-signature-based clinical assays that could be used for early detection. We will test our assays, optimize their performance and demonstrate how well they perform in a clinical screening setting.

More information about the research undertaken in the Nik-Zainal group can be found here: https://www.mrc-cu.cam.ac.uk/research/serenanikzainal

Eligibility and Funding

We welcome applications from those holding or expecting to obtain at least an upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant scientific subject. These studentships are funded by the Medical Research Council and are open to UK and EU applicants only. Other international students are not eligible to apply. UK applicants will be eligible to receive full funding of University and College fees and a stipend of £18,000 p.a. EU applicants will be funded on a fees-only basis, unless they meet the MRC's eligibility criteria for residency (visit the MRC website for further details: www.mrc.ac.uk/skills-careers/studentships/studentship-guidance/student-eligibility-requirements/). Successful applicants will be registered with the University of Cambridge.

How to apply

All applications will need to be made through the University Application Portal and will entail an application fee of £65. Please visit: www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcupdmsc/apply for further information about the programme and to access the Applicant Portal. Please note that the course code for PhD applications to the MRC Cancer Unit is MDCU22. Whilst making your online application please make it clear which project area(s) and principal investigator(s) you are interested in working with. Your online application will need to include:

  • A CV, including full details of all University course grades to date.
  • Contact details for two academic or professional referees.
  • A personal statement outlining your interest in a specific project area, what you hope to achieve from a PhD, and your research experience to date.

The above information must be provided under relevant sections on the application portal.

Completing the Research section

If you are applying for one project only: in the 'Proposed title of Research' textbox, insert the project title. If you wish to apply for more than one project, insert 'Cancer Research'.

If you are applying to more than one supervisor: in the 'Proposed Supervisor' textbox, please insert the initials of the Supervisors you wish to consider your application and in the 'Research Summary' textbox, please insert the project titles being offered by those Supervisors.

Please describe your research experience in the appropriate textbox.

The closing date for applications is 15th November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December.

Please contact studentships@mrc-cu.cam.ac.uk with any other enquiries concerning studentships or eligibility criteria.

Please quote reference SK20889 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentship - In situ Immune Dynamics through Breast Cancer Progression and Treatment (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 27, 2019.

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (CRUK CI) is a joint venture between the Charity, Cancer Research UK, and the University of Cambridge. The Institute has excellent state-of-the-art facilities and research ranges from basic cancer biology and computational biology through to translational research and clinical application. Graduate students play a pivotal role in the continuing success of our research programmes and gaining a studentship in the Institute is an excellent opportunity to start a research career in an environment committed to training outstanding cancer research scientists of the future. For further information, go to: https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/jobs-and-studentships/postgraduate-study

Dr Raza Ali wishes to appoint a student, to commence study in October 2020, to work on the project entitled: In situ Immune Dynamics through Breast Cancer Progression and Treatment.

Project details:

Recent trials show that some breast cancer patients benefit from treatment with immunotherapies. Immune cells infiltrating breast tumours are also established prognostic factors in some breast cancer subtypes. We now face the challenges of identifying those patients most likely to benefit from treatment, how best to combine immunotherapies with conventional therapies and discovering novel immune targets for new treatments. This project will address these questions by using cutting edge multidimensional tissue imaging (imaging mass cytometry) technology to quantify expression of fifty markers simultaneously in breast tumours. This will enable in-depth characterisation of the cellular components of the in situ immune response, their spatial relatedness and organisation at the tumour-immune interface. How immune dynamics reflect tumour evolution and treatment response will be evaluated by using pre and post-treatment samples. Extensive training in systems pathology, multidimensional tissue imaging, computational biology and clinical epidemiology will be provided.

Further reading:

  • Giesen C, Wang HA, Schapiro D, Zivanovic N, Jacobs A, Hattendorf B, Schuffler PJ, Grolimund D, Buhmann JM, Brandt S, Varga Z, Wild PJ, Gunther D, Bodenmiller B (2014) Highly multiplexed imaging of tumor tissues with subcellular resolution by mass cytometry. Nat Methods 11(4): 417-22

  • Keren L, Bosse M, Marquez D, Angoshtari R, Jain S, Varma S, Yang SR, Kurian A, Van Valen D, West R, Bendall SC, Angelo M (2018) A Structured Tumor-Immune Microenvironment in Triple Negative Breast Cancer Revealed by Multiplexed Ion Beam Imaging. Cell 174(6): 1373-1387.e19

  • Schulz D, Zanotelli VRT, Fischer JR, Schapiro D, Engler S, Lun XK, Jackson HW, Bodenmiller B (2017) Simultaneous Multiplexed Imaging of mRNA and Proteins with Subcellular Resolution in Breast Cancer Tissue Samples by Mass Cytometry. Cell systems

Preferred skills/knowledge

A Master's degree or excellent first degree with some laboratory research experience is required. Experience both at the bench and with computational biology is desirable; however outstanding individuals with either a purely quantitative or wet laboratory background are welcome. A strong interest in translational cancer research is needed.

Funding

This project is funded by a Cancer Research UK studentship that includes full funding for University and College fees and in addition, a stipend of £19,000 per annum, initially for 3 years, with funding for a further year possible as required.

Eligibility

No nationality restrictions apply to Cancer Research UK funded studentships. Applications are invited from recent graduates or final year undergraduates who hold or expect to gain a first/upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject from any recognised university worldwide.

How to apply

All applications need to be made using the University Applicant Portal. Please visit: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcrpdmsc for further information about the course and to access the applicant portal.

To complete your on-line application, you need to provide the following:

Reference Request: The names and contact details of two academic referees who have agreed to act on your behalf.

Research: If you wish to be considered for more than one studentship, please enter the names of all of the supervisors you wish to consider your application in the 'Research summary' text box. If you only wish your application to be considered by a single supervisor, then please enter their name in the 'Research Supervisor' text box. Please describe your past 'Research experience' in the appropriate text box.

Course Specific Questions: Your statement of interest (limit of 2,500 characters) should explain why you wish to be considered for the studentship and which qualities and experience you will bring to the role. Please also state how you learned of the studentship.

Supporting Documents: Please upload your CV (PDF file), which should include a list of the examinations taken at undergraduate level and if possible, your examination results.

Deadline

The closing date for applications is 15 November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December/January.

Please quote reference SW20866 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentship - The molecular mechanisms of piRNA-guided transposon silencing (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 25, 2019.

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (CRUK CI) is a joint venture between the Charity, Cancer Research UK, and the University of Cambridge. The Institute has excellent state-of-the-art facilities and research ranges from basic cancer biology and computational biology through to translational research and clinical application. Graduate students play a pivotal role in the continuing success of our research programmes and gaining a studentship in the Institute is an excellent opportunity to start a research career in an environment committed to training outstanding cancer research scientists of the future. For further information, go to: https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/jobs-and-studentships/postgraduate-study

Professor Greg Hannon, Head of the research group studying Small RNAs and mammalian genomics, wishes to appoint a student, to commence study in October 2020, to work on the project entitled: The molecular mechanisms of piRNA-guided transposon silencing. For further information about Professor Hannon's group, go to https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/research-groups/hannon-group

Project details:

The Hannon laboratory has a long-standing interest in small RNA biology. In recent years, the lab has focused on the study of the PIWI-interacting RNAs (piRNAs) in Drosophila melanogaster. The piRNA pathway is an RNA-based immune system that protects the germline of animals from uncontrolled transposon mobilisation, thus safeguarding genome integrity. Our lab has pioneered this field, being amongst the first describing the pathway, carrying out large-scale genomic screens to identify the main players and characterising their role within the pathway.

This project aims to uncover the molecular mechanisms that underlie the piRNA pathway using the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster as a model. While a rough framework of the piRNA system has been established, the precise hierarchy of the events that result in silencing is not yet fully understood. This aim will be achieved by combining biochemistry, proteomics, cell biology, genomics (RNA-seq, small RNA-seq, CLIP-seq, ChIP-seq), imaging and bioinformatics and by exploiting in vitro cell culture models as well as fly genetics. Overall, this project will lie at the interface between small RNA-mediated silencing, chromatin biology and development.

Further reading:

  1. Czech B, et al. (2018). piRNA-Guided Genome Defense: From Biogenesis to Silencing. Annual Review of Genetics.
  2. Munafò M, et al. (2019). Daedalus and Gasz recruit Armitage to mitochondria, bringing piRNA precursors to the biogenesis machinery. Genes & Development.
  3. Fabry MH, et al. (2019). piRNA-guided co-transcriptional silencing coopts nuclear export factors. eLife.
  4. Kneuss E, et al. (2019). Specialization of the Drosophila nuclear export family protein Nxf3 for piRNA precursor export. Genes & Development.

Preferred skills/knowledge

The ideal candidate would have a relevant undergraduate degree, a keen interest in working on this project, and would be highly motivated to drive an independent research project. A research Master's degree with six months or more of lab experience, as well as a strong background in biochemistry or cell biology would be highly desirable. The successful candidate is expected to work closely with other team members, have excellent communication skills and record keeping habits, organisational and time-management skills, and an inquisitive mind.

Funding

This project is funded by a Cancer Research UK studentship that includes full funding for University and College fees and in addition, a stipend of £19,000 per annum, initially for 3 years, with funding for a further year possible as required.

Eligibility

No nationality restrictions apply to Cancer Research UK funded studentships. Applications are invited from recent graduates or final year undergraduates who hold or expect to gain a first/upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject from any recognised university worldwide.

How to apply

All applications need to be made using the University Applicant Portal. Please visit: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcrpdmsc for further information about the course and to access the applicant portal.

To complete your on-line application, you need to provide the following:

Reference Request: The names and contact details of two academic referees who have agreed to act on your behalf.

Research: If you wish to be considered for more than one studentship, please enter the names of all of the supervisors you wish to consider your application in the 'Research summary' text box. If you only wish your application to be considered by a single supervisor, then please enter their name in the 'Research Supervisor' text box. Please describe your past 'Research experience' in the appropriate text box.

Course Specific Questions: Your statement of interest (limit of 2,500 characters) should explain why you wish to be considered for the studentship and which qualities and experience you will bring to the role. Please also state how you learned of the studentship.

Supporting Documents: Please upload your CV (PDF file), which should include a list of the examinations taken at undergraduate level and if possible, your examination results

Deadline

The closing date for applications is 15 November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December/January.

Please quote reference SW20806 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentship - Characterising estrogen receptor associated factors in breast cancer (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 19, 2019.

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (CRUK CI) is a joint venture between the Charity, Cancer Research UK, and the University of Cambridge. The Institute has excellent state-of-the-art facilities and research ranges from basic cancer biology and computational biology through to translational research and clinical application. Graduate students play a pivotal role in the continuing success of our research programmes and gaining a studentship in the Institute is an excellent opportunity to start a research career in an environment committed to training outstanding cancer research scientists of the future. For further information, go to: https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/jobs-and-studentships/postgraduate-study

Professor Jason Carroll, Head of the research group studying Nuclear Receptor Transcription, wishes to appoint a student, to commence study in October 2020, to work on the project entitled: Characterising estrogen receptor associated factors in breast cancer. For further information about Professor Carroll's group, go to http://www.carroll-lab.org.uk/

Project details:

Estrogen Receptor (ER) is the defining feature of luminal breast cancers, where it functions as a transcription factor. ER utilises a number of associated proteins to effectively maintain DNA interactions and regulate the target genes that culminate in cell division. We have recently developed a quantitative proteomic method called qPLEX-RIME that permits unbiased discovery of protein-protein interactions from clinical tissue. This has revealed many hundreds of putative novel ER-regulatory proteins. When coupled with CRISPR screening data, there are more than 100 ER-associated proteins that are also required for ER transcriptional activity. This project will focus on defining key candidates within these datasets that are differentially associated with ER in different stages of disease progression, with a focus on the proteins that contribute to drug resistance. Specifically, the project will involve characterisation of key candidate proteins that modulate ER activity. In addition, the project will involve detailed identification of the changes in protein interactions that occur during disease progression from primary tumours to metastases. Detailed functional assessment of candidate factors will be conducted and the potential role in mediating ER function will be defined.

Preferred skills/knowledge

The student will have either a Masters research degree or an excellent undergraduate degree plus additional wet lab experience. Previous experience in cell culture, molecular biology and biochemistry assays is required. Any previous experience in cancer research is also expected and genomic/proteomic experience would be a benefit, but is not essential.

Funding

This project is funded by a Cancer Research UK studentship that includes full funding for University and College fees and a stipend of £19,000 per annum.

Eligibility

No nationality restrictions apply to Cancer Research UK funded studentships. Applications are invited from recent graduates or final year undergraduates who hold or expect to gain a first/upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject from any recognised university worldwide.

How to apply

All applications need to be made using the University Applicant Portal. Please visit: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcrpdmsc for further information about the course and to access the applicant portal.

To complete your on-line application, you need to provide the following:

Reference Request: The names and contact details of two academic referees who have agreed to act on your behalf.

Research: If you wish to be considered for more than one studentship, please enter the names of all of the supervisors you wish to consider your application in the 'Research summary' text box. If you only wish your application to be considered by a single supervisor, then please enter their name in the 'Research Supervisor' text box. Please describe your past 'Research experience' in the appropriate text box.

Course Specific Questions: Your statement of interest (limit of 2,500 characters) should explain why you wish to be considered for the studentship and which qualities and experience you will bring to the role. Please also state how you learned of the studentship.

Supporting Documents: Please upload your CV (PDF file), which should include a list of the examinations taken at undergraduate level and if possible, your examination results

Deadline

The closing date for applications is 15 November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December/January.

Please quote reference SW20739 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentship - Identifying genomic and epigenetic factors in different subtypes of pancreatic cancer (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 19, 2019.

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (CRUK CI) is a joint venture between the Charity, Cancer Research UK, and the University of Cambridge. The Institute has excellent state-of-the-art facilities and research ranges from basic cancer biology and computational biology through to translational research and clinical application. Graduate students play a pivotal role in the continuing success of our research programmes and gaining a studentship in the Institute is an excellent opportunity to start a research career in an environment committed to training outstanding cancer research scientists of the future. For further information, go to: https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/jobs-and-studentships/postgraduate-study

Professor Jason Carroll, Head of the research group studying Nuclear Receptor Transcription, wishes to appoint a student, to commence study in October 2020, to work on the project entitled: Identifying genomic and epigenetic factors in different subtypes of pancreatic cancer. For further information about Professor Carroll's group, go to http://www.carroll-lab.org.uk/

Project details:

Despite recent advances in the treatment of pancreatic adenocarcinoma (PDAC), the median survival remains <12 months, with only 8% of patients surviving more than 5 years after diagnosis. One obstacle underlying these clinical challenges is our limited understanding of the molecular mechanisms of PDA metastasis.

Epigenetic pathway alterations are an emerging mechanism for PDA progression. Recent studies highlight a common theme of enhancer reprogramming in driving disease progression and metastasis. Further, functional and clinical outputs of this reprogramming are subtype specific and determined by deregulated master transcription factors, including a number of developmental factors that get co-opted in cancer. The Carroll laboratory has extensive experience in investigating the role of nuclear receptor transcription factors and pioneer factors in the setting of breast, prostate and more recently pancreatic cancer. The current project involves exploring the dynamic epigenetic landscape of PDAC subtypes using tools developed (qPLEX-RIME) in our laboratory. The project will explore the putative role of subtype specific pioneer factors/transcription factors in PDAC and their interplay with the dynamic stromal environment.

Preferred skills/knowledge

The student will have either a Masters research degree or an excellent undergraduate degree plus additional wet lab experience in molecular /cell biology. Previous experience with genomic technologies and pancreatic cancer biology would be an advantage but is not essential.

Funding

This project is funded by a Cancer Research UK studentship that includes full funding for University and College fees and a stipend of £19,000 per annum.

Eligibility

No nationality restrictions apply to Cancer Research UK funded studentships. Applications are invited from recent graduates or final year undergraduates who hold or expect to gain a first/upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject from any recognised university worldwide.

How to apply

All applications need to be made using the University Applicant Portal. Please visit: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcrpdmsc for further information about the course and to access the applicant portal.

To complete your on-line application, you need to provide the following:

Reference Request: The names and contact details of two academic referees who have agreed to act on your behalf.

Research: If you wish to be considered for more than one studentship, please enter the names of all of the supervisors you wish to consider your application in the 'Research summary' text box. If you only wish your application to be considered by a single supervisor, then please enter their name in the 'Research Supervisor' text box. Please describe your past 'Research experience' in the appropriate text box.

Course Specific Questions: Your statement of interest (limit of 2,500 characters) should explain why you wish to be considered for the studentship and which qualities and experience you will bring to the role. Please also state how you learned of the studentship.

Supporting Documents: Please upload your CV (PDF file), which should include a list of the examinations taken at undergraduate level and if possible, your examination results

Deadline

The closing date for applications is 15 November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December/January.

Please quote reference SW20740 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentship - Non-invasive imaging of the tumour microenvironment during radiotherapy response (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 19, 2019.

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (CRUK CI) is a joint venture between the Charity, Cancer Research UK, and the University of Cambridge. The Institute has excellent state-of-the-art facilities and research ranges from basic cancer biology and computational biology through to translational research and clinical application. Graduate students play a pivotal role in the continuing success of our research programmes and gaining a studentship in the Institute is an excellent opportunity to start a research career in an environment committed to training outstanding cancer research scientists of the future. For further information, go to: https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/jobs-and-studentships/postgraduate-study

Dr Sarah Bohndiek, Head of the VISIONLab, wishes to appoint a student, to commence study in October 2020, to work on the project entitled: Non-invasive imaging of the tumour microenvironment during radiotherapy response.

About us:

The VISIONLab at the University of Cambridge develops novel imaging approaches for early cancer detection and evaluation of disease prognosis. Our imaging innovations arise primarily from low cost optics and photonics technologies, applied both in cancer models and in patients. We are particularly interested in developing methods to interrogate the cancer metabolism and the tumour microenvironment. Importantly, we place emphasis on biological validation of the imaging biomarkers that we measure, connecting our non-invasive imaging signatures with the molecular processes that generate them.

Project details:

Optoacoustic imaging is an emerging clinical technology that combines the high contrast of optical imaging with the spatial resolution of ultrasound imaging. Recent work in the VISIONLab has shown that this technology can be used to identify tumour vascular phenotypes and oxygenation status at unprecedented resolution and depth in vivo. A crucial application for such imaging methods is radiotherapy, where imaging of blood oxygenation and tumour tissue hypoxia find applications in monitoring response and determining radioresistance.

This PhD project will focus on developing methodology that enables accurate identification of oxygenation changes in the tissue before, during and after radiotherapy. Initial validation will be performed in vivo, using small animal models of cancer. These studies will run in parallel with imaging in patient trials in the clinic, which the student will have an opportunity to support, seeing their efforts transition from bench to bedside. The student will have the opportunity to work across multiple research environments and departments, with potential for research visits to other centres within the CRUK Radiation Research Network and beyond. It will also involve external industrial collaboration.

Desirable qualifications and skills

The ideal candidate must have (or expect to obtain) a 1st or 2:1 honours degree in biological or biomedical sciences. Candidates with a strong interest in the project but coming from a different scientific background will also be considered if they can demonstrate sufficient coursework in the appropriate discipline. We strongly value a candidate with the desire to learn, create and innovate.

The project will combine a majority of experimental imaging with a minority computational element for image analysis and statistics. Background knowledge of programming languages used for quantitative data analysis (e.g. Matlab, Python), or an interest in computational methods, is thus desirable. The successful candidate should also have a strong interest in experimental research, including and acquiring in vivo imaging data. Additional relevant skills include: demonstrably excellent oral and written communication skills; strong team working skills; an ability to take initiative to solve problems; strong motivation in driving projects forward; and a significant critical thinking capability. Examples of any past experience that demonstrates these characteristics should be highlighted in the cover letter that accompanies any application. We expect the candidate will develop into an independent experimental researcher and will present their work in academic journals, as well as at conferences.

Candidates with previous experience of in vivo imaging or biomedical optics, for example during a Masters or Diploma degree, are particularly encouraged to apply.

Further information

This funded PhD project will be based in the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute at the University of Cambridge. Funding is available at CRUK studentship rates through the CRUK RadNet funding to the University of Cambridge. Supplementary funding may be obtained by the successful candidate from other University funding mechanisms (see https://www.student-funding.cam.ac.uk/). More information about the VISIONLab can be found on our website (www.bohndieklab.org). Requests for more information about the project or questions related to candidate experience should be made to Dr Sarah Bohndiek (seb53@cam.ac.uk) with the subject line "Optoacoustic PhD 2019" before the application to the University is complete.

Funding

This project is funded by a Cancer Research UK studentship that includes full funding for University and College fees and a stipend of £19,000 per annum.

Eligibility

No nationality restrictions apply to Cancer Research UK funded studentships. Applications are invited from recent graduates or final year undergraduates who hold or expect to gain a first/upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject from any recognised university worldwide.

How to apply

All applications need to be made using the University Applicant Portal. Please visit: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcrpdmsc for further information about the course and to access the applicant portal.

To complete your on-line application, you need to provide the following:

Reference Request: The names and contact details of two academic referees who have agreed to act on your behalf.

Research: If you wish to be considered for more than one studentship, please enter the names of all of the supervisors you wish to consider your application in the 'Research summary' text box. If you only wish your application to be considered by a single supervisor, then please enter their name in the 'Research Supervisor' text box. Please describe your past 'Research experience' in the appropriate text box.

Course Specific Questions: Your statement of interest (limit of 2,500 characters) should explain why you wish to be considered for the studentship and which qualities and experience you will bring to the role. Please also state how you learned of the studentship.

Supporting Documents: Please upload your CV (PDF file), which should include a list of the examinations taken at undergraduate level and if possible, your examination results

Deadline

The closing date for applications is 15 November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December/January.

Please quote reference SW20741 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentship - Origins and fate of clonal expansions of cancer driver in human colon (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 19, 2019.

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (CRUK CI) is a joint venture between the Charity, Cancer Research UK, and the University of Cambridge. The Institute has excellent state-of-the-art facilities and research ranges from basic cancer biology and computational biology through to translational research and clinical application. Graduate students play a pivotal role in the continuing success of our research programmes and gaining a studentship in the Institute is an excellent opportunity to start a research career in an environment committed to training outstanding cancer research scientists of the future. For further information, go to: https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/jobs-and-studentships/postgraduate-study

Dr Doug Winton wishes to appoint a student, to commence study in October 2020, to work on the project entitled: Origins and fate of clonal expansions of cancer driver in human colon. For further information about Dr Winton's group, please go to https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/research-groups/winton-group.

Project details:

The non-transformed colonic epithelium acquires significant mutational burden with age, including many cancer drivers. For different mutations the extent of such burden is dictated by discrete stages of de novo mutation rate, stem cell replacement processes within glands and lateral clonal expansions of individual glands. The impact of each step has only recently been benchmarked in normal colon by quantifying the size and frequency of clones containing neutral mutations that have been visualised in situ. Biases in both stem cell replacement and lateral expansions can result in significant over representation of somatic variants to an extent that has not been appreciated hitherto. The project will involve: visualising somatic variants with a particular focus on cancer driver events associated with human colorectal cancer; performing detailed quantitative and functional characterisation to rank and compare different driver events and understanding how such expansions contribute to the development of neoplastic disease.

Preferred skills/knowledge

Applicants should have, or expect to obtain, an undergraduate degree at honours level or equivalent in biomedical sciences with a strong component of molecular biology. At least six months of lab based experience is required.

Funding

This project is funded by a Cancer Research UK studentship that includes full funding for University and College fees and a stipend of £19,000 per annum.

Eligibility

No nationality restrictions apply to Cancer Research UK funded studentships. Applications are invited from recent graduates or final year undergraduates who hold or expect to gain a first/upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject from any recognised university worldwide.

How to apply

All applications need to be made using the University Applicant Portal. Please visit: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcrpdmsc for further information about the course and to access the applicant portal.

To complete your on-line application, you need to provide the following:

Reference Request: The names and contact details of two academic referees who have agreed to act on your behalf.

Research: If you wish to be considered for more than one studentship, please enter the names of all of the supervisors you wish to consider your application in the 'Research summary' text box. If you only wish your application to be considered by a single supervisor, then please enter their name in the 'Research Supervisor' text box. Please describe your past 'Research experience' in the appropriate text box.

Course Specific Questions: Your statement of interest (limit of 2,500 characters) should explain why you wish to be considered for the studentship and which qualities and experience you will bring to the role. Please also state how you learned of the studentship.

Supporting Documents: Please upload your CV (PDF file), which should include a list of the examinations taken at undergraduate level and if possible, your examination results

Deadline

The closing date for applications is 15 November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December/January.

Please quote reference SW20742 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentship - Epigenetic Features of the Genome (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 18, 2019.

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (CRUK CI) is a joint venture between the Charity, Cancer Research UK, and the University of Cambridge. The Institute has excellent state-of-the-art facilities and research ranges from basic cancer biology and computational biology through to translational research and clinical application. Graduate students play a pivotal role in the continuing success of our research programmes and gaining a studentship in the Institute is an excellent opportunity to start a research career in an environment committed to training outstanding cancer research scientists of the future. For further information, go to: https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/jobs-and-studentships/postgraduate-study

Professor Sir Shankar Balasubramanian, Head of the research group studying the Chemical Biology of Nucleic Acids, wishes to appoint a student, to commence study in October 2020, to work on the project entitled: Epigenetic Features of the Genome.

Project details:

The lab exploits both chemistry and biology to address fundamental mechanisms of genome function (http://www-balasubramanian.ch.cam.ac.uk). While many genetic determinants of cancer are known, alternative nucleic acid secondary structures and chemically modified DNA (or RNA) bases can be epigenetic features of nucleic acids that are important to normal biology and in oncogenesis. The project will explore chemical modifications as epigenetic features and how these influence secondary structure formation and function in the genome of normal and cancer cells. The scope of the project may include exploring the formation and dynamics of G-quadruplex structures and modified DNA bases in the genome and their roles in gene expression, DNA replication and genome stability. We have developed methods to show that G-quadruplexes are enriched in cancer-related genes and have a profound impact on transcription (e.g. Nature Genetics, 2016, 48, 1267-1272; Nature Biotechnology, 2015, 33, 877-881). We have also developed genome-wide mapping and sequencing of modified bases and are now exploring further base modifications (e.g. Genome Biology, 2017, 18:23; Nature Chemical Biology, 2015, 11, 555-557).

Preferred skills/knowledge

The student will be highly motivated, capable of independent thought and have excellent communication skills with the ability to work collaboratively. Ideally, the candidate will have a strong background in molecular biology and/or biochemistry. Knowledge of the chemistry and biology of nucleic acids would be beneficial.

Funding

This project is funded by a Cancer Research UK studentship that includes full funding for University and College fees and a stipend of £19,000 per annum.

Eligibility

No nationality restrictions apply to Cancer Research UK funded studentships. Applications are invited from recent graduates or final year undergraduates who hold or expect to gain a first/upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject from any recognised university worldwide.

How to apply

All applications need to be made using the University Applicant Portal. Please visit: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcrpdmsc for further information about the course and to access the applicant portal.

To complete your on-line application, you need to provide the following:

Reference Request: The names and contact details of two academic referees who have agreed to act on your behalf.

Research: If you wish to be considered for more than one studentship, please enter the names of all of the supervisors you wish to consider your application in the 'Research summary' text box. If you only wish your application to be considered by a single supervisor, then please enter their name in the 'Research Supervisor' text box. Please describe your past 'Research experience' in the appropriate text box.

Course Specific Questions: Your statement of interest (limit of 2,500 characters) should explain why you wish to be considered for the studentship and which qualities and experience you will bring to the role. Please also state how you learned of the studentship.

Supporting Documents: Please upload your CV (PDF file), which should include a list of the examinations taken at undergraduate level and if possible, your examination results

Deadline

The closing date for applications is 15 November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December/January.

Please quote reference SW20730 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

PhD Studentship - Fibroblast Heterogeneity in Pancreatic Cancer (Fixed Term)

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 18, 2019.

The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (CRUK CI) is a joint venture between the Charity, Cancer Research UK, and the University of Cambridge. The Institute has excellent state-of-the-art facilities and research ranges from basic cancer biology and computational biology through to translational research and clinical application. Graduate students play a pivotal role in the continuing success of our research programmes and gaining a studentship in the Institute is an excellent opportunity to start a research career in an environment committed to training outstanding cancer research scientists of the future. For further information, go to: https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/jobs-and-studentships/postgraduate-study

Dr Giulia Biffi wishes to appoint a student, to commence study in October 2020, to work on the project entitled: Fibroblast Heterogeneity in Pancreatic Cancer. For further information about Dr Biffi's group, please go to https://www.cruk.cam.ac.uk/research-groups/biffi-group.

Project details:

In pancreatic cancer, cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) have been shown to promote tumour growth, chemotherapy resistance and immunosuppression by secreting ligands and extracellular matrix proteins. More recent evidence indicates that targeting of CAFs in pancreatic cancer might also have tumour-restraining functions. These studies underscore the need to better determine the nature and roles of CAFs, to identify effective therapeutic targets. This project will determine the interplay between cancer cells and fibroblasts in pancreatic cancer with diverse tumour genetic landscapes, as this may have both prognostic and therapeutic implications. The research project will involve the use of in vivo genetically modified and transplantation mouse models, in vitro three-dimensional, pancreatic tumour organoid/fibroblast co-culture models, genetic and pharmacological targeting of pancreatic tumour organoids and fibroblasts, bulk and single-cell RNA-Sequencing, flow cytometry, immunohistochemical and RNA in situ techniques, and standard molecular biology and biochemistry.

Further reading:

Ohlund D, Handly-Santana A, Biffi G, Elyada E, et al. Distinct populations of inflammatory fibroblasts and myofibroblasts in pancreatic cancer. J Exp Med 2017;214(3):579-96.

Biffi G, et al. IL1-Induced JAK/STAT Signaling Is Antagonized by TGFbeta to Shape CAF Heterogeneity in Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma. Cancer Discov 2019;9(2):282-301.

Elyada E, et al. Cross-species single-cell analysis of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma reveals antigen-presenting cancer-associated fibroblasts. Cancer Discov 2019.

Preferred skills/knowledge

Applicants are expected to have experience in laboratory techniques utilised in cellular and molecular biology. Also, experience in some of the areas mentioned in the project description would be highly desirable. The successful candidate must be strongly motivated to drive an independent research project, but also be a highly collaborative individual.

Funding

This project is funded by a Cancer Research UK studentship that includes full funding for University and College fees and a stipend of £19,000 per annum.

Eligibility

No nationality restrictions apply to Cancer Research UK funded studentships. Applications are invited from recent graduates or final year undergraduates who hold or expect to gain a first/upper second class degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject from any recognised university worldwide.

How to apply

All applications need to be made using the University Applicant Portal. Please visit: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcrpdmsc for further information about the course and to access the applicant portal.

To complete your on-line application, you need to provide the following:

Reference Request: The names and contact details of two academic referees who have agreed to act on your behalf.

Research: If you wish to be considered for more than one studentship, please enter the names of all of the supervisors you wish to consider your application in the 'Research summary' text box. If you only wish your application to be considered by a single supervisor, then please enter their name in the 'Research Supervisor' text box. Please describe your past 'Research experience' in the appropriate text box.

Course Specific Questions: Your statement of interest (limit of 2,500 characters) should explain why you wish to be considered for the studentship and which qualities and experience you will bring to the role. Please also state how you learned of the studentship.

Supporting Documents: Please upload your CV (PDF file), which should include a list of the examinations taken at undergraduate level and if possible, your examination results

Deadline

The closing date for applications is 15 November 2019, with interviews expected to take place in December/January.

Please quote reference SW20731 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

Universities of Cambridge and East Anglia and Wellcome Sanger Institute Wellcome PhD Programme for Clinicians

From Studentships at the University of Cambridge. Published on Sep 12, 2019.

The Universities of Cambridge and East Anglia together with the Wellcome Sanger Institute invite applications from medical or veterinary graduates for up to 8 Wellcome-funded PhD fellowships and 2 Wellcome Sanger Institute-funded PhD fellowships in the Wellcome PhD Programme for Clinicians to be taken up by the end of 2020. The fellowships provide funding for clinical salary, University and College fees and research consumables for 3 years*. Prior to commencement, the Programme can provide up to three months of additional salary support, enabling successful applicants to experience research in different groups before making an informed choice of project and supervisor. Candidates who are interested in computational biology, epidemiology or public health can be funded for an additional 1-year MPhil in order to obtain the appropriate skills before starting their PhD.

Fellowships based in campuses in Cambridge or Norwich offer diverse research training opportunities in Departments and Institutes throughout the University of Cambridge Schools of Clinical Medicine and Biological Sciences and the Biomedical campus of the University of East Anglia and associated Institutes on the Norwich Research Park.

In addition, the Wellcome Sanger Institute is a world-leading centre at the forefront of experimental, computational and translational genomic research. Faculty members use large-scale genomic tools to investigate important global health problems such as cancer, malaria, diabetes and infectious disease. Examples of potential Sanger-based projects can be found at http://www.sanger.ac.uk/about/study/phd-programmes/clinical-phd-programme. Examples of potential Norwich Research Park projects can be found at https://www.uea.ac.uk/medicine-health-sciences/graduate-school/studentships.

Applicants must be qualified in clinical or veterinary medicine and in a training grade (i.e., not of Consultant or Faculty status). It is anticipated that many candidates will have already commenced their higher specialist clinical training, but this is not essential. The most important criteria we are looking for are academic excellence and the potential to pursue a career in academic clinical or veterinary medicine. To be eligible to apply for the fellowships, you must be medically qualified; individuals qualified in veterinary medicine can also apply for fellowships but not at the Sanger Institute. Further details are available from https://www.mrl.ims.cam.ac.uk/postgraduate-study-at-the-mrl/wellcome-trust-clinical-phd-programme/how-to-apply/ and https://www.uea.ac.uk/medicine-health-sciences/graduate-school/studentships or by contacting Teresa Wallman (tdw30@medschl.cam.ac.uk) or by contacting Professor Alastair Watson for the University of East Anglia (alastair.watson@uea.ac.uk).

Closing Date: Thursday 31 October 2019

Interviews: Monday 9 and Tuesday 10 December 2019

Applications must be made via the University of Cambridge Graduate Admissions on-line portal http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcbpdwtc

Please quote reference RG20652 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.