UCL Cancer Institute Seminar Series 

Informatics Seminar

Dr Andrea Sottoriva

Institute of Cancer Research

'Natural evolution and star-like phylogenies in next-generation sequencing data'


Wednesday 22nd April, 12.00noon
Bill Lyons Informatics Centre Paul O'Gorman Building - 6th Floor
UCL Cancer Institute

If you wish to meet with Dr Sottoriva, please contact javier.herrero@ucl.ac.uk 

All welcome

Multidisciplinary Seminar 

This seminar will be focused on Physics

Nano molecules

Dr David Bowler

UCL Dept. of Physics and Astronomy
'Accurate quantum mechanical calculations of entire biological molecules'

Dr Bart W Hoogenboom

London Centre for Nanotechnology
'Better than super resolution: What we can learn by visualising biomolecules at the nanoscale'

Thursday 16th April, 12.00noon
UCL Cancer Institute
Courtyard Café
Paul O'Gorman Building, WC1E 6BT

The UCL Cancer Institute Multidisciplinary Seminar Series will highlight research from disciplines across UCL. The aim is to present new and exciting work to Cancer Institute researchers and to forge collaborations across different disciplines in UCL.

All welcome. A light lunch will be served afterwards. 

NHS National Institute of Health Research logo

NIHR University College London Hospitals
Biomedical Research Centre

Professor Adrian Hayday

Professor Adrian Hayday

Kay Glendinning Prof of Immunobiology
King's College London

'Learning the language of tissue T-cell communications and exploiting it in cancer'

12noon, Thursday 19th March 2015
UCL Cancer Institute 
Paul O’Gorman Building 
Courtyard Café

In 2001, we showed that mice were much more susceptible to myriad types of cutaneous carcinogenesis if they specifically lacked gd T cells, a white blood cell whose unanticipated discovery we initiated in 1985.  Our implication of gd T cells in immunosurveillance was at a time of great scepticism concerning tumour immunology, consistent with which we found much more variable contributions of ab T cells to host protection. Since then, the impressive clinical efficacy of immune checkpoint blockades has appropriately raised optimism concerning the existence and application of tumour immunology. However, this optimism easily glosses over many treatment failures, some extreme adverse events, and a seeming lack of general applicability. This situation cannot be satisfactorily redressed until we understand tumour immunology, and in particular the molecular language that regulates T cells within the tissues in which solid tumours form.  

To this end, we have identified novel, organ-specific B7-like molecules by which epithelial cells determine and regulate their local T cell compartments.  Our studies have identified unanticipated parallels between the regulation of mouse and human T cells in healthy tissue and in tumours, and thereby point to novel clinical targets.  In parallel, we have developed large scale means to monitor human immune responsiveness and to identify novel regulators of tissue-associated immune compartments.

Hosted by Sergio Quezada

The Seminar will be followed by a sandwich buffet lunch

Dr Andreas Linkermann

Nephrology Laboratory, University-Hospital Schleswig-Holstein - Campus Kiel

'The quest for a cure: how to prevent regulated necrosis'

5.00pm, Monday 9th March 2015
Courtyard Café, Paul O’Gorman Building 
All welcome

Andreas Linkermann

Until recently, necrosis has mainly been investigated clinically by pathologists. Regarding morphological changes, several macroscopically distinct forms of necrosis in whole organs have been described. It is entirely unclear which molecular pathway of regulated necrosis underlie the specific morphological changes associated with necrosis and whether or not they are regulated on a genetic level. The identification of necroptosis, defined by the molecular interplay between RIPK3 and MLKL and its negative regulation by caspase-8 and FADD will be discussed. Non-apoptotic, non-necroptotic pathways of regulated cell death, like cyclophilin D-mediated regulated necrosis and ferroptosis, have led to the intriguing possibility to specifically target necrosis in various pathologies. 

The seminar will be followed by a drinks reception

Professor Phil Jones

MRC Cancer Unit, University of Cambridge

'How stem cell fate changes during squamous carcinogenesis'

12.00pm, Thursday 26th February 2015
Courtyard Café, Paul O’Gorman Building All welcome

Dr Phil Jones

Deep sequencing has started to shed light on the evolution of haematological cancers, but little is known about the early stages in the development of solid tumours.   We have developed a lineage tracing based approach to quantify cell behaviour in normal tissues and tumours, using mouse oesophageal epithelium as a model.  

In homeostasis, wild type progenitors generate equal proportions of progenitor and differentiating cells, dividing to generate two progenitor daughters, two differentiating daughters or one of each.  Transgenic inhibition of Notch signalling in scattered progenitor cells, modelling the effect of inactivating mutations common in squamous cancer, creates dominant clones.  The mutant cells lose the two differentiating cell division outcome, resulting in exponential growth and functional immortality. This cellular mechanism explains the phenomenon of ‘field change’.  

Lineage tracing in tumours in a new model of squamous carcinogenesis reveals that the rate of cell division is not increased in lesions compared with the surrounding epithelium, rather the rate at which differentiated cells are lost is substantially reduced.  These findings have significant implications for cancer treatment and prevention.

The Seminar will be followed by a sandwich buffet lunch

Multidisciplinary Seminar

Thursday 19th February 5:00pm 
Courtyard Cafe, Paul O'Gorman Building

Prof Alexey Zaikin

Chair in Applied Mathematics and Computational Biomedicine
'Noise and intelligence in intracellular gene-regulatory networks'

Dr Oleg Blyuss

Institute for Women's Health 
'Analysis of ovarian cancer proteomic biomarkers”

The UCL Cancer Institute Multidisciplinary Seminar Series highlights research from disciplines across UCL. This seminar in the series will be focused on Mathematics.

All welcome.

Professor Giorgio Stassi

Surgical and Oncological Sciences, University of Palermo
'Cancer Stem Cells: from Bench to Bedside'

Wednesday 18th February 2015
Courtyard Cafe, Paul O'Gorman Building

Host: Professor Henning Walczak (h.walczak@ucl.ac.uk).  


Even though it is clear that larger and more invasive colorectoral cancers (CRCs) represent a more efficient source of metastatic cells, the cell population able to migrate from the primary site and generate distant metastasis is still unknown. Prof. Stassi’s research team have recently demonstrated that CRC contains a small and variable number of cells that express CD44v6 and which are uniquely able to generate metastatic tumors in orthotopic xenograft models. Importantly, the team observed that BMP7 impairs the tumorigenic and metastatic potential of colon cancer stem cells. CSCs have peculiar features that potentially make them ideal models in the study of drug resistance and sensitivity. The research team have provided evidence that CSC isolation and in vitro sensitivity assay, are feasible and clinically suitable to identify a potentially effective treatment for chemo-refractory lung and colorectal cancer.

All are welcome.  An informal reception will be held after the seminar.

UCL Cancer Institute Special Seminar
5.00pm, 29th January 2015
Courtyard Café, Paul O’Gorman Building
All welcome.

Prof Alison Lloyd

MRC Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology, UCL, London

'Links between the multicellular tissue repair response and tumourigenesis'

Alison Lloyd

The research in Prof Lloyd’s laboratory focuses on two fundamental cell biological processes: Cell Growth and Tissue Regeneration and the role of these processes in cancer. The Lab uses the mammalian peripheral nervous system (PNS) as model system. The combination of primary in vitro culture systems and in vivo mouse models is used to study the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the homeostatic regulation of these processes and how they become deregulated in cancer.  

While Prof Lloyd work has broad implications for cancer biology, it also has direct relevance for the tumour predisposition syndrome, Neurofibromatosis Type 1 (NF1). In her talk, she will focus on the  complex multicellular response required for tissue repair in the adult and the relevance of these processes to tumourigenesis.

Alison Lloyd Research Group

The Seminar will be followed by a drinks reception.