Masters Research Project

Module code: MB7006

This module comprises a full-time, 4 month research project placement: 3 months of lab work and then 1 month for writing the dissertation and project presentation. Your placement may be at an industrial research laboratory or a cancer research institute or within the University of Leicester itself. The project is an ideal preparation if you are wishing to proceed to a PhD in the fields of Cancer Research, and offers a great opportunity to enhance your employability as a biomedical scientist.

You will select a project according to your interest from a wide range of cancer-related topics and contribute to the work of a research group. Some examples of projects undertaken by recent students include:

  • MicroRNA profiling human cancer models systems
  • Understanding the essential role of Histone Deacetylase (HDAC1) 1 and 2 in mouse embryonic stem cells
  • Validating mitotic NIMA-related kinases as potential anti-cancer drug targets
  • Developing a cellular model of malignant mesothelioma for translational studies
  • Study of the senescent cell secretome
  • Designing kinase inhibitors for cancer therapy
  • Temporal regulation of the RAS-MAPK signalling
  • Lab-on-a-chip monitoring of disease development by detection of cancer biomarkers in the humoral component of blood
  • Finding the genetic determinants of response to radiotherapy

During your project you will learn how to design and conduct hypothesis-driven research using state-of-the-art techniques. You will also gain experience of how to critically interpret scientific literature and how to use effective written and oral communication to present your data. 

Published projects

Some previous MSc projects have led to Leicester students co-authoring publications in peer-reviewed journals:

  • Lam D, Shah S, de Castro IP, Loh S, Martins LM. (2010). Drosophila happyhour modulates JNK-dependent apoptosis. Cell Death and Disease, Aug 10; 1: e66. doi:10.1038/cddis.2010.44
  • Muskett FW, Thouta S, Thomson SJ, Bowen A, Stansfeld PJ, Mitcheson JS. (2011). Mechanistic insight into human ether-à-go-go-related gene (hERG) K+ channel deactivation gating from the solution structure of the EAG domain. J. Biol. Chem., 286, 6184-91. doi:10.1074/jbc.M110.199364
  • Al-Salmani K, Abbas HH, Schulpen S, Karbaschi M, Abdalla I, Bowman KJ, So KK, Evans MD, Jones GD, Godschalk RW, Cooke MS. (2011). Simplified method for the collection, storage and comet assay analysis of DNA damage in whole blood. Free Radic. Biol. Med., 51, 719-25. doi:10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2011.05.020
  • Prosser SL, Samant MD, Morrison CE, Baxter JE, Fry AM. (2012) Oscillation of APC/C activity during cell cycle arrest drives centrosome amplification. J. Cell Sci., 125, 5353-5368. doi:10.1242/jcs.106096