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Sensitizing Head and Neck Cancer to ionising radiation by targeting PARP enzymes

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  • Full or part time
    Dr G Grundy
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Head and Neck Cancer (HNC) describes cancers effecting the lining of the mouth, nose and throat, salivary glands and thyroid. In the UK around 12,000 cases of Head and Neck Cancer are diagnosed each year and it is a particular challenge in North West regions where incidence is over 3 times the national average. The University of Liverpool and North West Cancer Research have made HNC a priority research area and the Head and Neck Cancer research group contains a team of researchers and clinicians dedicated to improve HNC treatments and outcomes.
The strategy in our laboratory is to improve the effectiveness of radiotherapy by combining treatment with targeted chemotherapy drugs. One class of agents are called PARP inhibitors which are currently being used to treat certain breast and ovarian cancers but are also being investigated as radio-sensitizers for HNC. Using cellular, functional genomic (RNA interference and CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing) and biochemical techniques (mass spectrometry) we hope to uncover the molecular mechanisms of the PARP family of enzymes that contribute to resistance to radiation that is used in radiotherapy. The successful candidate will be part of a well-supported community of graduate students at the University of Liverpool and will also enjoy support from the NWCR charity where there will be opportunity for participation in charity events and public engagement.

Qualifications and Experience
You should have, or expect to hold at least a 2:1 in Biochemistry, Biomolecular Sciences or a related subject with some laboratory experience as part of your degree or gained independently. Previous experience with scientific engagement is desired and will be expected of the successful candidate by the funding Charity.
Please note the University of Liverpool’s English Language Requirement for EU and International Students is an IELTS score of 6.5 with no band score lower than 5.5.

To apply please send CV and cover letter to [Email Address Removed] .
For application enquires please contact Dr Gabrielle Grundy, [Email Address Removed]

Funding Notes

North-West Cancer Research provide a stipend of £19,000 per year (RCUK Rate) for three years.
Applications can only be from Home/EU applicants
Proposed start date: 1 October 2020



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