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Signal Transduction and Molecular Pharmacology Team

Professor Paul Workman’s Team is a key part of the Cancer Research UK Cancer Therapeutics Unit and focuses on the mechanisms of molecular cancer therapies.

Team leader

Professor Paul Workman

Professor Paul Workman

Chief Executive and President

Professor Paul Workman is a passionate advocate of personalised molecular medicine, and is an enthusiastic practitioner of multidisciplinary cancer drug discovery and development approaches to ‘drugging the cancer genome’.

ORCID 0000-0003-1659-3034

Team members

Dr Paul Clarke

I am a Cancer Research UK funded senior scientist, and deputy to Professor Paul Workman in the Signal Transduction and Molecular Pharmacology Team.

Dr Alexia Hervieu Vilches
Dr Alexia Hervieu Vilches
Postdoctoral Training Fellow ORCID 0000-0002-8061-6678

I am a cell biologist with experience in tumour biology and signal transduction. My role within our team is to use reverse translational approaches to investigate new candidate targets for drug discovery projects, with a particular focus on oesophageal cancer.

Dr Eirini-Maria Lampraki
Dr Eirini-Maria Lampraki
Postdoctoral Training Fellow ORCID 0000-0002-5688-8542

I have a strong interest in translational cancer research. I started at the ICR in April 2019, and my current research focuses on defining the molecular pharmacology and mechanism of action of novel cancer therapies targeting the cancer cell stress response.

Dr Marco Licciardello
Dr Marco Licciardello
Postdoctoral Training Fellow

I am interested in identifying new targeted treatments of cancer and understanding the mechanism of anticancer drugs. I set up CRISPR/Cas9 pooled screening technology in the lab, and am looking at EML4-ALK variant-specific synthetic lethal partners of HSP90 inhibitors and the sensitivity of lung cancer cells to cytotoxic NK cells.

Dr Marianna Martella
Dr Marianna Martella
Postdoctoral Training Fellow

As part of a collaboration with a Pharma partner my research focusses on the therapeutic targeting of the regulation of protein synthesis initiation. I will use molecular biochemical and cellular techniques to further define the potential for inhibiting protein synthesis initiation as a therapeutic strategy in cancer.

Dr Marissa Powers
Dr Marissa Powers
Senior Scientific Officer

I have expertise in the genetic manipulation of cells, alongside the use of chemical tools to determine the molecular pharmacology of novel therapeutic agents and the identification of mechanistic and predictive biomarkers. My research focuses on the therapeutic targeting of the cancer cell stress response and included the discovery of the clinically active HSP90 inhibitor luminespib (AUY922).

 Toby Roe
Toby Roe
Senior Scientific Officer

I am an experienced molecular and cell biologist, supporting the research aims of the team within the Cancer Therapeutics Unit. My research is currently focused on the discovery of inhibitors of RNA processing.

Dr Swee Sharp
Dr Swee Sharp
Senior Scientific Officer

I am helping to identify and develop innovative targeted cancer drugs, and understand their molecular pharmacology and mechanism of action. I was involved in the discovery of HSP90 inhibitors, including luminespib (AUY922), which shows activity in drug-resistant breast and lung cancers. I am currently a member of a collaborative team with a Pharma partner identifying WNT-pathway inhibitors.

 Kate Swabey
Kate Swabey
Higher Scientific Officer

I am an experienced cell biologist funded by the Kidani trust to translate our team’s research into ovarian cancer models.

Dr Robert Te Poele
Senior Scientific Officer

I have been involved in several drug development projects that discovered small molecule inhibitors of PI3K and WNT signalling. I am currently part of the project team developing inhibitors of the cancer cell stress response. My research focusses on gene expression profiling techniques to help understand the mechanism of action of compounds, molecular determinants of sensitivity and markers of drug response.

Dr Alexandra Vasile
Dr Alexandra Vasile
Postdoctoral Training Fellow

I am investigating the molecular biology of a new drug discovery target. My role is to uncover the mechanism and highlight the biological function of a target candidate that regulates mRNA processing, including new biomarkers for targeted cancer therapy. I aim to bring novel approaches to discoveries that can translate into highly effective therapeutic technologies.

Dr Chi Zhang
Dr Chi Zhang
Postdoctoral Training Fellow

I am focused on developing ways to overcome drug resistance acquired during cancer treatment. These include evaluating combinatorial therapies and targeting cancer evolution mechanisms with small molecules. I am experienced in drug target identification and verification using high-content screening. I am also developing new next-generation sequencing methodology and data analysis tools.

Dr Steve Hobbs
Postdoctoral Training Fellow