UCL News


Spotlight on Dr Beth Payne

21 September 2017

This week the spotlight is on Dr Beth Payne,  Senior Clinical Researcher/Clinical Consultant, UCL Cancer Institute.

Beth Payne

What is your role and what does it involve?

I'm a clinician scientist and Research Group leader at UCL Cancer Institute. My lab's research focus is in bone marrow failure and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) - a blood disorder that causes a drop in number of healthy blood cells in the body. In my role as a consultant haematologist at UCLH, I specialise in treating patients with these conditions.

How long have you been at UCL and what was your previous role?

I've been here since 2011. Prior to joining UCL, I was in Boston (USA) doing my PhD. 

What working achievement or initiative are you most proud of?

I'm really proud to have been awarded an Advanced Clinician Scientist Fellowship by Cancer Research UK. There aren't many of these types of awards available and it's a great deal of work to get there, so I'm delighted. The Fellowship award will support my work on early diagnosis and personalised therapy for myelodysplastic syndromes and I'm excited to be able to advance my academic research for the benefit of patients. 

Tell us about a project you are working on now which is top of your to-do list?

Right now, I am focused on two key projects examining inherited leukaemia predisposition syndromes . We have developed models using zebrafish to help address the specific additional genetic events that cause MDS and acute myeloid leukaemia. At the top of my to-do list is to get our new project funded my CRUK fellowship underway, this is looking at the evolution of MDS from within clonal populations of cells.

What is your favourite album, film and novel?

Abba Gold, True Romance and The Go-Between (L.P. Hartley)

What is your favourite joke (pre-watershed)?

The one that I can remember right now is currently a family favourite: What is the capital of Alaska? D' you know? (Juneau!)

Who would be your dream dinner guests?

JK Rowling

Hillary Clinton.

Maya Angelou

What advice would you give your younger self?

I would tell myself to remember that advice is only advice -  do what you want to do.

What would it surprise people to know about you?

I had a scholarship at a ballet school when I was younger, but ended up going to medical school.

What is your favourite place?

The garden on a sunny day.