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Cancer Biology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

We have 38 Cancer Biology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

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We have 38 Cancer Biology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

A PhD in Cancer Biology would provide you with the opportunity to research a specific cancer in great detail. Whether you’re developing a new treatment, understanding the factors that allow a tumour to arise or innovating better diagnostic tests, you’ll be improving our understanding of cancer and saving lives.

What’s it like to do a PhD in Cancer Biology?

Doing a PhD in Cancer Biology, you’ll develop excellent laboratory skills, particularly in cell culture, working with RNA and studying the proteome. Most Cancer Biology projects link to other subjects and as such, you’ll have experience working with techniques from Cell Biology, Immunology and Genetics.

Some typical research topics in Cancer Biology include:

  • Developing novel diagnostic tests
  • Understanding a potential trigger of metastasis
  • Developing novel therapeutics to treat a specific cancer
  • The immune system and cancer interactions
  • Characterising the role of a specific tumour suppressor or oncogene in a certain cancer

Generally, Cancer Biology programmes are advertised on the university website with the research proposal, including the scope and primary aim of the research pre-determined by the supervisor. These projects are usually fully-funded.

It’s uncommon to propose your own research in Cancer Biology since the additional bench fees make self-funding difficult. It can also be tricky to find a supervisor with the interests that line up well with your suggested project that also have the equipment and expertise to supervise you through your PhD.

In your daily life you’ll be in the laboratory conducting experiments, reading the literature for new methods you could try, analysing old data, and talking to colleagues and your supervisor about your work. In the final year of your PhD you’ll submit a thesis of around 60,000 words that will contribute to the knowledge of your field and you’ll defend your work during your viva exam.

Entry requirements

The entry requirements for most Cancer Biology PhD programmes involve a Masters in a subject directly related to Biology, with at least a Merit or Distinction. If English isn’t your first language, you’ll also need to show that you have the right level of language proficiency.

PhD in Cancer Biology funding options

The Research Council responsible for funding Cancer Biology PhDs in the UK is the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC). They provide fully-funded studentships including a stipend for living costs, a consumables budget for bench fees and a tuition fee waiver. Students don’t apply directly to the BBSRC, you apply for advertised projects with this funding attached.

It’s uncommon for Cancer Biology PhD students to be ‘self-funded’ due to the additional bench fees. However, if you were planning to fund yourself it might be achievable (depending on your project) through the UK government’s PhD loan and part-time work.

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Cancer epigenetics PhD project

Broad Project Summary. Cancer is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Epigenetic changes are now recognised as a hallmark feature of cancer, but our understanding of factors that are responsible for tumour spread still remains limited. Read more

Cancer Immunology

Project opportunity. A position is available at the University of Queensland Diamantina Institute under Prof. Ian Frazer and Dr. Jazmina L Gonzalez Cruz for an enthusiastic, talented, and highly motivated student to undertake PhDs in cancer immunology. Read more

Genetics of skin cancer

  Research Group: Statistical Genetics
BACKGROUND. Genetics, together with sun exposure, play an important role in the development of skin cancers. Our lab studies both melanoma and the keratinocyte cancers basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. Read more

Personalised Medicine for Colorectal Cancer

In the. Conjoint Gastroenterology Laboratory. , we are interested in characterizing the genetic changes underlying the progression of pre-cancerous colonic polyps to colon cancer. Read more

Immunogenomics of oesophageal cancer to improve early detection

Oesophageal adenocarcinoma (OAC) is a deadly disease whose incidence has increased substantially in recent years. OAC is preceded by a pre-cancer condition named Barrett’s oesophagus (BO). Read more
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PhD in Cancer Biology - The relationship between uptake and efflux transporters in Breast Cancer

Number of awards. 1. Start date. 19 September 2022. Award duration. 3 Year funded PhD. Overview. This PhD project will explore the role of transport proteins in Breast Cancer. Read more

Postgraduate Research Opportunities at the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry

Self-funded PhD opportunities across a multitude of disciplines, supervised by PIs delivering cutting edge, world famous research are available throughout our Institutes. Read more

In vitro breast cancer model

Description. Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for a fully funded (fees and stipend), full-time PhD position at the University College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland. Read more

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