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Project information

PhD Studentship - Metastasis

Action Against Cancer is raising funds to support the work of a PhD student's analysis of the causes of and treatment for metastasis (secondary cancer). The post-holder will work in a team at Imperial College, Hammersmith Hospital, led by world-leading oncologist Professor Justin Stebbing.

January 2013 - January 2014

Charity information: Action Against Cancer

Action Against Cancer logo
  • Need


    The selected employee will play a pivotal role in the planning and implementation of a comprehensive study into what causes primary localised lung, breast, colon or prostate cancer cells to move to other parts of the body. This secondary form of cancer is called metastasis and is usually incurable.


    Ultimately, it is expected that the increased understanding of metastasis will assist oncologists:

    i. to better predict the likelihood of cancerous cells metastasising in each patient
    ii. to tailor the testing for patients with a high likelihood of their cancer metastasising so as to improve the likelihood of early diagnosis
    iii. to improve the therapeutic strategies for these patients once a propensity for metastasis has been identified, thus greatly increasing their chances of survival

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To provide a grant to Professor Justin Stebbing's team at Imperial College, Hammersmith Hospital.


    » This will be achieved by fundraising through The Big Give and through other community and corporate fundraising initiatives.

    What success will look like

    Grants made by the charity are subject to:

    1). The results of the work carried out being published and peer-reviewed
    2). The grant recipients providing yearly progress reports

    Aim 2

    The ultimate aim of the project is to develop improved tests and treatments for cancer sufferers.


    » The selected candidate will be managed by Professor Stebbing who is the most published oncologist in Europe over the last two years.

    What success will look like

    The team at Imperial College are developing inexpensive, NHS available, diagnostics and drugs.

  • Impact


    Improved understanding of what causes primary localised lung, breast, colon or prostate cancer cells to move to other parts of the body. Improved understanding will allow academic oncologists to develop new diagnostics and treatments and clinical oncologists to bring the benefits of these advances to their patients.

    The focus of the Imperial College Cancer Strategy is to reduce the mortality rate of cancer sufferers over the next 15 years. The post-holder will contribute towards this goal.


    The only risk is not gaining enough funding. Action Against Cancer has raised £450,000 in its first 13 months with very few overheads. The charity has significant plans moving forward and is confident of raising enough funds to cover all costs of the Studentship.


    Action Against Cancer will provide major donors with an annual report about the charity's progress and in particular the progress of the proposed Studentship.

    All other donors will be able to view video and text updates on the Action Against Cancer website.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £33,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £18,000 Studentship Salary A salary of £18,000 per annum for 1 year
      £15,000 Laboratory consumables Consumables for use by the student in their experiments
  • Background


    The work will primarily be performed at Imperial College’s Hammersmith Campus which has recently been awarded Academic Healthcare Centre status. It provides an exceptional, intellectually stimulating environment for biomedical research, especially translational studies, the subject of this proposal.

    Imperial College’s Department of Surgery and Cancer nurtures and benefits from a collegiate atmosphere which fosters frequent reagent, technical and intellectual exchange.


    Cancer sufferers and indirectly, those affected by the diagnosis of a loved one with cancer.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Action Against Cancer works with exceptionally low overheads. This means that we can guarantee prospective donors that 100% of their donation will be used to support the development of cures for cancer (i.e. none will be spent on overheads).

    The work will be carried out at a leading academic institution, led by Professor Justin Stebbing - one of the world's most respected and acclaimed cancer medicine experts.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Professor Justin Stebbing

    Professor Stebbing has published over 400 peer-reviewed papers in journals such as Nature Medicine. He will select and manage the post-holder.

    The Trustees Of Action Against Cancer

    The funds will be stewarded soundly by Action Against Cancer's trustees - 2 invoice financiers, a qualified solicitor, an auditor and a surgeon.