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PhD studentship projects - July Recruitment Round

Applications for our July PhD recruitment round are now open.

Applications for PhDs are invited from talented graduates or final year undergraduates. Candidates should hold, or, expect to gain either;

  • A first, or, upper-second class honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject.
  • A masters degree in a relevant subject.

Successful candidates will undertake a four-year research training programme under the guidance of a supervisory team of our world-class researchers, starting in October 2020. Students receive an annual stipend, currently £21,000 per annum, as well as having fees and project costs paid for the four-year duration.

We are recruiting for two projects. These are listed below by relevant funding body with details of the supervisory team and project site(s). Please review the project proposals for a detailed look at the work involved in each project, any specific focus or training experience provided, and the background(s) suited to application.

Details of how to apply are explained at the end of the project list at the bottom of this page.

Important dates:

  • Applications for our July PhD recruitment round opened on Wednesday 15 July
  • Applications will close on Sunday 09 August at 11:55pm UK time
  • Remote/online interviews will be held between late August to early September with dates confirmed in the near future.


MRC funded industrial CASE (iCASE) programme in Enabling Integrated Drug Discovery

This programme offers an exciting opportunity to train as a researcher with exposure to and understanding of integrated interdisciplinary drug discovery in both academia and industry.

These studentships are funded by the Medical Research Council. Normally to be eligible for a full award a student must have no restrictions on how long they can stay in the UK and have been ordinarily resident in the UK for at least 3 years prior to the start of the studentship. Please see the MRC residency requirements for further information.

Our iCASE programme offers projects in collaboration with two industry partners, AstraZeneca and Merck. The scheme will:

  • Provide students with experience of collaborative research with a non‐academic partner
  • Offer outstanding students an experience of at least two distinct research cultures
  • Provide access to a wider than usual range of technology, facilities and expertise
  • Enable the student to spend a period of time with the non-academic partner (usually no less than 3 months over the lifetime of the PhD)

Visit the Medical Research Council website for further details of the scheme.

There is one iCASE studentship available:


PROJECT: In-silico approaches to enable optimisation of small molecule binding by perturbing and interacting with water networks

View project proposal



NIHR Biomedical Research Centre funded studentships

These studentships fund clinically focused projects supporting the translational work of the NIHR Biomedical Research Centre at the Royal Marsden and The Institute of Cancer Research.

Each project has strong links to clinical units in the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust building on strengths in basic sciences and their translational value. Students will have supervision from both a clinician and a basic scientist and be embedded in the research philosophy of the Biomedical Research Centre.

These studentships are open to all applicants (including overseas applicants). Please see our entry requirements for further eligibility information.

There is one NIHR- BRC studentship available:


PROJECT: Molecular mechanisms of acquired chemotherapy resistance in colorectal cancer and their implications for novel therapeutics development

View project proposal



Eligibility and application information

In addition to our general entry requirements, further eligibility criteria may apply to specific programmes and projects. Please ensure to read the information provided by the funding body and also the project proposals. We consider all applications on merit and have a strong commitment to enhancing the diversity of our staff and students.

Please ensure that you read the application instructions carefully. Applications for our main round of PhD studentships must be made online via the ICR's Student Application Portal, this is the only way by which we accept applications. Out of the three projects above, you will be asked to indicate up to three project preferences.

How to apply


Previously advertised studentships

The deadline for applications to these projects was May 1 2020

In silico discovery of the degrons and the degron-mediated recruitment modules of the human Ubiquitin E3 Ligase system. Dr Norman Davey. Cancer Biology, Computational Pathology - Chelsea. 
View project proposal

Understanding the homeostatic response to DNA repair inhibitors in breast cancer. Professor Chris Lord. Breast Cancer Research, Gene Function - Chelsea. View project proposal

Winners versus Losers: Harnessing Cell Competition to kill tumour cells. Professor Pascal Meier, Breast Cancer Research, Cell Death and Immunity - Chelsea. View project proposal

Tumour evolution in super-resolution: Developing new Artificial Intelligence based methods to analyse 4D imaging data of tumour communities Professor Chris Bakal, Cancer Biology, Dynamical Cell Systems - Chelsea. View Project Proposal

Leveraging state-of-the-art methods in Artificial Intelligence and medical imaging for automated response evaluation and prediction of soft-tissue sarcomas to systemic treatment. Dr Matthew Blackledge, Radiotherapy and Imaging, Computational Imaging - Sutton. View project proposal


PhD studentships

Applications for our main PhD recruitment round have opened. We’re searching for the brightest minds in cancer research. The deadline for applications is 17 November.

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