University College London Featured PhD Programmes
Ulster University Featured PhD Programmes
University College London Featured PhD Programmes
Heriot-Watt University Featured PhD Programmes
University of Reading Featured PhD Programmes

Implementation of the patient-derived explant (PDE) platform forevaluating tumour responses to novel immunotherapies

This project is no longer listed on and may not be available.

Click here to search for PhD studentship opportunities
  • Full or part time
    Prof A Thomas
    Prof C Pritchard
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Attrition is a major problem in anticancer drug development with ~95% of drugs tested in Phase I trials not reaching the market. The demand for better pre-clinical models that more accurately predict success in clinical trials has motivated us to invest in a patient-relevant tumour “explant” (PDE) platform. In this approach, tumour samples are obtained fresh from surgery, cultured ex vivo and drug responses assessed in situ using multi-immunofluorescence and digital pathology evaluation. One of the major advantages of PDEs over other preclinical models is that they contextually preserve the original architecture of the tissue, thus allowing assessment of responses to agents that target the tumour microenvironment including ICIs and, indeed, our preliminary data indicate patient-specific responses of PDEs to immunotherapies. The aim of this studentship is to use extend the PDE platform to the Birmingham Cancer Centre and apply the PDE platform to investigate patient-specific responses to a range of novel ICIs in development and identify novel biomarkers predictive of response. The student will receive bespoke training in this novel technology, so gaining expertise in cutting-edge digital methods and their application to cancer diagnosis, development of new therapies and biomarkers.

Entry requirements:
You must hold (or be about to obtain) a First or an Upper Second Class UK undergraduate degree or an equivalent degree from a recognised EU institution, in an area relevant to the projects you are applying for.

Qualifications (or a combination of qualifications and experience) which demonstrate equivalent ability and attainment will also be considered.

For example, a less than sufficient first degree may be enhanced to meet the requirements by the acquisition of a Distinction at Masters level or significant research experience gained from employment).

Informal enquiries:
If you have any questions or would like to find out more about IMPACT, please get in touch.
Email us at [Email Address Removed]

UK/EU applicants only

To apply:
Please refer to

Funding Notes

The Studentship provides 3.5 years of Stipend at UKRI rates and Tuition fees at UK/EU rates.

FindAPhD. Copyright 2005-2020
All rights reserved.