University of Cambridge

Job Opportunities


Research Assistant (Fixed Term)

The MRC Cancer Unit (MRC CU) is a University Department situated on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus. It provides an outstanding environment for cancer research, supporting some 10 research groups and ~100 bench scientists. The MRC CU's focus is to conduct world-leading research to understand how cancers develop and seeks to translate this knowledge into new approaches for diagnosis and treatment. The unit is a key participant in the Cambridge Cancer Centre, providing an opportunity to engage in interdisciplinary collaborations with Cambridge colleagues in the biological, physical, chemical and engineering sciences.

Applications are invited to apply for a Research Associate position within an established translational research programme headed by Professor Rebecca Fitzgerald, MRC Cancer Unit. For more information please visit

The overall focus of the research programme is to understand the earliest steps of cancer development and to apply this knowledge to develop clinical molecular tests for the early detection of cancer. Oesophageal cancer is a relevant disease to study because it is a prime example of a cancer which often presents late resulting in poor outcomes for patients. On the other hand we know that it develops slowly from a metaplastic condition called Barrett's oesophagus which is usually undiagnosed. There is therefore the opportunity to try to find better clinical pathways to detect patients at an earlier stage of their disease when it is curable.

This project provides an exciting opportunity to develop clinically relevant molecular diagnostic assays for detecting and risk stratifying Barrett's oesophagus. The assays will be applied to model systems and clinical samples including biopsies and a novel cell collection device in clinical trial from our group called the Cytosponge. The post will also provide opportunities for the researcher to work on -omics data down to a single cell level generated from patients the International Cancer Genome Consortium to help inform our understanding of the development and progression of this cancer and apply the knowledge to biomarker assays.

We are seeking applicants with an Undergraduate degree or a Master's Degree (or equivalent) in a Biological subject and relevant laboratory experience. Excellent practical experience in experimental molecular biology laboratory work is essential. Experience working with human samples is an advantage. A track record of peer-reviewed publications is also desirable. Candidates should be able to demonstrate their capability of abstract thinking as well as their potential to develop and pursue scientific projects in the field of cancer biology.

This is a fixed term 3-year position funded by the Rosetrees Trust. Salary is dependent on relevant experience.

Once an offer of employment has been accepted the successful candidate will be required to undergo a security check.

To apply online for this vacancy, please click on the 'Apply' button below. This will route you to the University's Web Recruitment System, where you will need to register an account (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

Please ensure that you upload a covering letter and CV in the Upload section of the online application. If you upload any additional documents which have not been requested, we will not be able to consider these as part of your application.

Closing date for applications is Sunday 27th August 2017. Interviews will be held during the week commencing 11th September 2017.

Please include details of your referees, including email address and phone number, one of which must be your most recent line manager.

Please quote reference SK13014 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

Further information

Apply online