Medicine: Fully Funded Health and Care Research Wales (HCRW) PhD Scholarship at Swansea

  • Phd
  • Full cost of UK/EU tuition fees, plus a stipend
  • 26 August 2020

Medicine: Fully Funded Health and Care Research Wales (HCRW) PhD Scholarship: Repurposed drug targeting of metabolic flexibility in the tumour microenvironment

This scholarship is funded by Health and Care Research Wales (HCRW).

A substantial number of cancer patients present with late-stage aggressive disease that is likely to become therapy-resistant, frequently leaving surgery or end-of-life care as the only options. Often treatments are limited and, on the whole, have not changed in more than 40-years. However, developing brand-new drugs is an incredibly expensive (around $3 billion) and arduous-process, taking around 9-years to reach clinical trials and 15-years to market; and has a success-rate of only around 5% in cancer.

Drug repurposing is the process of finding new uses for existing drugs, outside the scope of their original disease target. Encouragingly, combinations of repurposed drugs have been shown to eradicate tumours in cancer models.

Metabolic reprogramming is now considered a hallmark of cancer, contributing to clinical-resistance, and has become an area of accelerated research over the last decade. This studentship will explore metabolic flexibility in therapy-resistant cancers and investigate targeting these cancers with the use of repurposed drug combinations. The aims of the studentship are to 1) use metabolomics to examine the dependence of cancer cells on alternative metabolic fuels to prototypical glucose; 2) examine the potential for repurposing preapproved drugs for the treatment of metabolically flexible therapy-resistant cancers; and 3) assess how these drug combinations affect the metabolic landscape in cancer cells, identifying further vulnerabilities and novel therapeutic targets.

This studentship is in collaboration with Dr Nick Jones, Swansea University Medical School, Dr Emma Vincent, University of Bristol and Professor Andrew Tee, Cardiff University. Students will gain experience in, amongst others, stable isotope tracing (SITA); metabolic assays; short-interfering RNA; Seahorse XF Bioanalyzer.

Interviews will take place (via Zoom) in the first week of September.

Swansea University
This is a scholarship by

Swansea University

Swansea, is a coastal city and county, officially known as the City and County of Swansea in Wales.

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Candidates must have a minimum of upper second class Honours degree in a relevant discipline (medicine; genetics; biochemistry, chemistry).

For candidates whose first language is not English, we require IELTS 6.5 (with 5.5 in each component) or equivalent. Please visit our website for a list of acceptable English language test. Due to funding restrictions, this scholarship is open to UK/EU candidates only.


Do you wish to become an international student next year?
Demonstrate your English skills with IELTS.


This scholarship covers the full cost of UK/EU tuition fees and an annual stipend of ÂŁ15,009. Funding for consumables is included.


To apply, please complete and submit the following documents to Dr James Cronin:

  • Medical School PGR Scholarship Application Form
  • CV
  • Full Transcripts (if not a Swansea Student)
  • Two written References
  • English Language Test Certificate (if appropriate)
  • Copy of Passport (if non UK National)

For enquiries, please contact Dr James Cronin via our website and contact details.

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