Theme 3: Molecular Cell Biology and Immunology; Drug Discovery and Development
The majority of Cancer Research UK funded work at Imperial College is currently directed towards cell signalling and molecular target identification, exemplifying the strong collaboration between basic cancer research and medicinal chemistry. We continue to expand and develop the new drug discovery groups focused on breast and ovarian cancer and have incorporated these programmes into the Centre.
There is a strong programme in the new biology of cancer, with particular strengths in signal transduction biology (Professors Charles Coombes, Michael Seckl, Eric Lam), steroid signalling (Malcolm Parker, Charles Coombes, Simak Ali, Charlotte Bevan) cell biology of women’s cancer (Professors Charles Coombes, Hani Gabra) and ovarian cancer gene identification and cloning (Professors Robert Brown, Hani Gabra). Recent achievements include the elucidation of the structure and mechanism of the multi-drug resistance P-glycoprotein.
Collaboration between the College and Cancer Research UK has resulted in a novel agent being developed commercially and we have a further two compounds already in pre-clinical tests prior to entering Phase 1 clinical trials. Four more compounds are in hit-to-lead stages and two novel cellular approaches to treat cancer are being developed. New molecular phenotyping methods for patient stratification have also been pioneered at Imperial and will be actively employed to improve patient care in oncology and other medical specialities.
Theme Leader: Professor R. Charles Coombes, FMedSci