UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health


Developmental Biology and Cancer Research & Teaching Department Latest News

Latest News


Great Ormond Street Hospital Chairty

Call for PhD Project Proposals: GOSHCC Lewis Spitz Surgical Scientist PhD Programme

Deadline: 20th September 2019

Thanks to the generous support of GOSH Children's Charity, the Institute will again be running the Lewis Spitz Surgical Scientist PhD programme. This programme is aimed at surgical trainees ready to begin a career in academia. This scheme will support the salary of the student, tuition fees, consumables and travel.

The DBC Research & Teaching Department, in association with the Research Degrees Office, is inviting colleagues across GOSH/ICH to submit PhD project proposals. We will only consider proposals from clinical academic partnerships which will provide students with both a clinical and academic supervisor/mentor.

You are asked at this stage to submit a project suitable for a PhD Studentship to begin in October 2020. Following submission of project applications there will be five stages to the process:

  1. Supervisors are asked to submit Project Proposal forms for consideration
  2. There will be a preliminary review of the project outlines by a central review panel which will result in a portfolio* of possible projects to be advertised
  3. Students will be interviewed and selected by a central ICH committee
  4. Selected students will be paired up with supervisors on the basis of the outline projects in the portfolio
  5. A request will be made for the supervisor to supply a fully updated and costed project description to be reviewed by two independent ICH academics, to ensure that selected projects are fully approved and up-to-date

*Inclusion of your project in the portfolio will not guarantee you a student.

Project submissions are invited from all academic areas to ensure we are able to offer students a wide variety of projects that covers all aspects of surgically-related research at ICH/GOSH. Projects should be submitted by the student’s intended academic supervisor.

All projects will be considered on an equal footing.

Applicants with overdue final reports to an external funding body will not be considered.

Supervisors may submit one or more project outlines for inclusion in the portfolio. Due to the fact that the main project review takes place after the student selection procedure, there will be some flexibility to update the selected projects at that later date.

Applications should be submitted by email to Louise Loughlin,  l.loughlin@ucl.ac.uk

The deadline for receipt of applications is 20th September 2019 (5pm)

*The projects included in the approved portofolio may be used for other UCL initiatives in addition to ICH studentships

See the GOSHCC Lewis Spitz Surgical Scientist PhD Programme webpage for further information



Research Highlights

Paper of the month

The paper of the month this month goes to a group from Developmental Biology and Cancer. Both joint first authors were undergraduates when they completed the work reported in this paper in Dr Gabriel Galea's lab. Nina Short, who was awarded a Child Health Research Summer Internship, and Max Butler was awarded a Wellcome Biomedical Vacation Studentship.  The last author in the paper is Gabriel Galea and the other authors are also from this Institute. 
The study focusses on the role of the enzyme Rho-associated protein kinase (ROCK) enclosing the posterior neuropore (PNP) in the neural tube.  The main finding from the study is that ROCK dependent apical constriction compensates for the PNP widening effects of the inter-kinetic nuclear migration to enable progression of closure of the neural tube. 

 There is also a first person interview with Max and Nina published in the same edition of the journal.  A very well done to students and the rest of the research team!


Honours and Awards


Team Award win for DBC PSS Team at the first Institute Professional Services Awards

The first of it's kind, the awards were given out at our recent Open Meeting, by our Director and the Faculty Dean.



BAPS Prize for Joe Davidson

Joe Davidson, NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow in Paediatric Surgery (DBC), awarded the President’s Prize for Best Clinical Paper at the British Association of Paediatric Surgeons National Congress in Nottingham. His work titled "Long-term outcomes of Hirschsprung's Disease with intellectual impairment: a 35-year institutional series" is the latest in a collaboration between GOSH- GOS ICH and University of Helsinki, and is the first study to report outcomes in adults with Hirschsprung’s with an associated Learning Disability".


Colleagues listed below have recently achieved a significant grant/fellowship award of more than £200k:

Professor Andrew Copp (DBC) received £9,968,678 from The Wellcome Trust for consolidation of the MRC / Wellcome Trust Human Developmental Biology Resource (HDBR).


GOS ICH In the Media


Wellcome Funded initiative unlock secrets of human development

25 July 2019

A world-first research project will unravel how human embryos develop in the first weeks and months after fertilisation, improving our understanding of fertility, birth defects and regenerative medicine. Read more:  GOS ICH News