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The Programme

cancer cellsCancer has a devastating impact on the lives of millions worldwide every year. The NDM's Cancer Biology programme at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research is dedicated to educating and training the future generations of scientists who will advance our understanding of this disease and develop therapeutic strategies to treat it.

Our projects are multidisciplinary, incorporating aspects of genomics, cell and molecular biology, epigenetics, structural biology, immunology and bioinformatics. We encourage applications from students with diverse backgrounds and broad skill sets.

Previous experience in cancer biology is not a prerequisite for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD equivalent) since a wide range of training opportunities and classes are available to support students. Admission is based upon merit and achievement, highly competitive and open to students worldwide.


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NDM Doctoral Prize Studentships are our fully funded 4 year scholarships open to outstanding students of any nationality, which are advertised each autumn for students who want to start the following October. The application deadline is early January each year and offers made early February.

Other sources of full funding include: the NIH-Oxford Scholars Program, Scripps-Oxford and the A*STAR Research Institute in Singapore and various sources of Funding for Clinicians. For a full listing of funding opportunities, please refer to the Funding page.

Doctoral Projects

Projects in Cancer Biology cover a wide range of topics including: cell polarity, metastasis, transcriptional regulation, genetic variation in cancer, protein quality control, angiogenesis, epigenetic signatures, oxygen sensing, bioinformatics, functional genomics, inflammatory signaling and cancer stem cells.

Projects relating to Cancer biology

Training and Career Development

cancer cell close upDuring the first year, students attend compulsory and optional courses and lectures in basic cancer biology and laboratory techniques, as well as working full time at the bench. Training is tailored to the individual needs of each student to bring everyone up to a satisfactory level of background knowledge. Subsequent training focuses on developing and honing the skills required for a successful career in independent research.

scientist in labNDM students in Cancer Biology are part of larger group from several departments in the Medical Sciences Division. Collaborations within the NDM and across the university are widespread. With the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research at its centre, Cancer Biology also organizes lectures, seminars and symposia to give students exposure to a broad spectrum of current cancer-related research.

How to apply