The programme will include oral and poster presentations from the student attendees, three presentations from high-profile keynote speakers. In addition, there will be career workshops focusing on a variety of scientific careers within and beyond academia. Students selected to give a talk may choose between present live or pre-record a video that will be streamed on the day.

The conference will be hosted virtually on, where talks, poster sessions, workshops and social events will be held in an entertaining and dynamic environment.

While students from all years are invited to participate, students in the more advanced stages of their PhD are particularly encouraged to attend and give oral presentation of their work. In the event of over-subscription, preference will be given to students near the end of their PhD. All attendees will have to present their research, by either giving a talk or presenting a poster.

IPSCC 2021 Programme

Wednesday 16th June 2021

10:00-10:30 (GMT time+1) Virtual arrival

10.30-11:00 Introduction by CRUK Beatson Deputy Director Jim Norman

11:00-12:00 Keynote lecture: Prof. Laura Machesky “Eating, drinking and walking – How cancer cells navigate their environment and respond to local stresses

12:00-12:20 Q&A session with Prof. Laura Machesky

12:30-13:00 Break

13:00-15:00 Student talks – Session 1: Molecular and Cell Biology of Cancer

  • 13:00-13:20 Christos Kiourtis – CRUK Beatson Institute
    “TGFβ-dependent inter-organ transmission of cellular senescence and its role in acute liver failure”
  • 13:20-13:40 Carina Seidl – DKFZ
    “R-spondins are BMP receptor antagonists in Xenopus early embryonic development”
  • 13:40-14:00 Ella Gilchrist – CRUK Beatson Institute
    “Investigating the role of KDM6a in intestinal carcinogenesis”
  • 14:00-14:10 Beckman Coulter Sponsor Talk
  • 14:10-14:30 Andrew Hartley – CRUK Beatson Institute
    “Investigating ARID1A in Prostate Cancer”
  • 14:30-14:50 Ryan Guilbert – CRUK Manchester Institute
    Investigating the role of cell-cell junctions in neuroendocrine small cell lung cancer”
  • 14:50-15:10 Marianna Maniaci – SEMM: IFOM/IEO
    “The impact of arginine-methylation in phase separation and RNA-binding proteins dynamics in cancer”

15:10-15:30 Break

15:30-17:30 Poster Session 1

17.45-18.15 Institutes Introduction (Lecture Theatre)

Thursday 17th June 2021

09:00-10:00 Keynote lecture: Dr. Christian Frezza “A journey with Fumarate Hydratase: an enzyme and a tumour suppressor

10:00-10:20 Q&A session with Dr. Christian Frezza

10:30-12:20 Student talks – Session 2  From bench to bedside: Therapeutic strategies in cancer

  • 10:30-10:50 Lisa Noll – DKFZ
    “Engineering CAR T cells to target EGFR on solid tumours overexpressing EGFR”
  • 10:50-11:10 Melissa Frizziero – CRUK Manchester Institute
    “Generation of a Circulating Tumour Cell (CTC)-Derived eXplant of a NeuroEndocrine Carcinoma of unknown origin.”
  • 11:10-11:30 Narissa Parry – CRUK Beatson Institute
    “Investigating Combinations of BH3 Mimetics and Nilotinib in Blast Phase CML”
  • 11:30-11:50 Rachel Harris – CRUK Beatson Institute
    “Inherent aspartate depletion in BRAF inhibitor resistant melanoma gives rise to glutaminase dependence – a metabolic vulnerability with therapeutic potential”
  • 11:50-12:10 Sarah Memarzadeh – CRUK Beatson Institute
    MetaTacs: A Strategy for Metastasis Prevention through Targeted Fascin Degradation”
  • 12:10-12:20 Beckman Coulter Sponsor Talk

12.20-13:00 Break

13:00-15:00 Student talks – Session 3 Unveiling the tumour complexity: Immunology and Microenvironment

  • 13:00-13:20 Sarah Richtmann – DKFZ
    “The role of the pregnancy associated protein glycodelin and its influence on the immune system in non-small-cell lung cancer”
  • 13:20-13:40 Robert Wiesheu – CRUK Beatson Institute
    “Phenotypic and functional characterisation of anti-tumour gamma delta (gd) T cells as putative therapeutic agent in metastatic triple-negative breast cancer”
  • 13:40-14:00 Matthias Jürgen Schmitt – MDC Berlin
    “Phenotypic mapping of pathological crosstalk between glioblastoma and innate immune cells by synthetic genetic tracing”
  • 14:00-14:20 Charlotte Bell – CRUK Manchester Institute
    “Cytotoxic therapy-induced activation of the COX-2/PGE2 pathway by dying tumour cells reduces the efficacy of chemotherapy and immunotherapy combinations”
  • 14:20-14:40 Vivien Veninga – NKI
    “Exploiting the potential of organoid co-cultures to shine light on tumor reactive immune cells from the innate and adaptive immune system”
  • 14:40-15:00 Christel Ramirez – NKI
    “Exploring the potential of myeloid cell targeting in hepatocellular carcinoma”

15:00-15:30 Break

15:30-17:30 Poster Session 2

Friday 18th June 2021

09:00-11:00 Career workshops (3×30 minutes rotation)

  1. A path to success: being a woman, a clinician and a principal investigator
    Dr Christina Halsey (Senior Clinical Lecturer & Head of the Childhood Leukaemia Research Group, Glasgow, UK)
  2. From academia to the world of law
    Dr Amy Dawson (Patent Attorney, Glasgow, UK)
  3. From academia to industry and back
    Gemma McCrorie (Clinical Team Manager, Bellshill, UK)
    Dr Cassie Clarke (Associate Scientist, CRUK Beatson Institute, Glasgow, UK)
  4. Starting your own lab and doing research in academia
    Dr Payam Gammage (Junior Group Leader, CRUK Beatson Institute, Glasgow, UK)
    Dr Ed Roberts (Junior Group Leader, CRUK Beatson Institute, Glasgow, UK)
  5. How bioinformatics can set you free and whether there is life beyond academia
    Dr Ania Wilczynska (Senior Scientist, Computational Biology,, Cambridge, UK)
  6. From the bench to medical affairs or how to secure an MSL job after a PhD
    Dr Elodie Kuntz (European Field Medical Lead, Oncology, Alkermes, London, UK)
  7. Transitioning to a start-up company after your PhD
    Dr Charlene Fabian (R&D Associate, Medannex Ltd, Edinburgh, UK)
  8. What does a medical writer do?
    Victoria Huber (Medical Writer, Physicians World Europe, Glasgow, UK)
    Dr Simone Boldt (Scientific Lead, Physicians World Europe GmbH, Glasgow, UK)

11:00-11:20 Break

11:20-12:40 Student talks – Session 4: The multiomics era of Cancer Research

  • 11:20-11:40 Fawaz Al-Shaheri – DKFZ
    “Early detection of tumour recurrence in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma patients by means of a specific protein signature in peripheral blood”
  • 11:40-12:00 Tuyu Zheng – DKFZ
    “Cross-species genomics reveals oncogenic dependencies in ZFTA/C11orf95 fusion-positive supratentorial ependymomas”
  • 12:00-12:20 Aadhitthya Vijayaraghavan – CRUK Cambridge Institute
    “Utilizing biological properties of circulating tumour DNA for improved detection using Machine learning models”
  • 12:20-12:40 Vineet Dalal – DKFZ
    “Identifying novel dependencies in Synovial sarcoma using CRISPR/Cas9 screening”

12:40-13:30 Break

13:30-14:30 Keynote lecture: Prof. Ross Cagan “Curing Fly Cancer & Other Bits”

14:30-15:30 Q&A session Prof. Ross Cagan + Prizes (Best posters and Best talk)

Social networking

The IPSCC Gather Space has rooms for Social Gathering, which will be open every afternoon after the Poster Sessions. Checkout The Pub and The Rooftop areas: this is an informal opportunity for you to make new connections and play some games!

Meet our keynote speakers

Laura MacheskyCancer Research UK Beatson Institute, Glasgow, UK

Professor Laura Machesky FRSE FMEDSci is the Deputy Director of the Institute of Cancer Sciences of the University of Glasgow.  At the CRUK Beatson Institute, she is a Senior Group Leader and head of the Migration, Invasion and Metastasis Laboratory. She obtained her PhD in 1993 from The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, under the supervision of Thomas D. Pollard. During her time there, she studied the interaction of the actin-binding protein profilin with lipids of the cell membrane and firstly described the Arp2/3 complex. She later moved to the UK, where she held two postdoc positions at the MRC Laboratory for Molecular Biology, the first in Cambridge with Robert Kay (1993-1995) and the second in London with Alan Hall (1995-1999). During that time, she focused her research on molecular mechanisms involved in actin dynamics and cell movement. Her ground-breaking discovery was that of the function of the Scar/WAVE complex in activating Arp2/3 and initiating actin nucleation and formation of protrusions at the cell edge. She initially started her group in Birmingham (1999), but moved to the CRUK Beatson Institute in 2007. Her research, although still largely focused on molecular determinants of cytoskeletal integrity and cell movement in the context of cancer and normal development, has expanded to include mechanotransduction-mediated metabolic rewiring of tumours and bioengineered environments to mimic the metastatic niche.

Christian FrezzaUniversity of Cambridge, UK

Dr Christian Frezza is Programme leader at the MRC Cancer Unit, Cambridge Cancer Center, at the University of Cambridge, UK. He studied Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Padova, Italy, and gained his MSc in 2002, after a period of research on mitochondrial toxicity induced by photoactivable anticancer drugs. Christian then joined the laboratory of Luca Scorrano in Padova to start a PhD on mitochondrial dynamics and apoptosis. In 2008, he moved to the Beatson Institute of Cancer Research in Glasgow and in the lab of Eyal Gottlie as recipient of an EMBO Long Term Fellowship, where he investigated the role of mitochondrial defects in tumorigenesis. He moved to the MRC Cancer Unit in 2012 as tenure track Group Leader and became a Programme Leader in 2017. His laboratory is mainly interested in investigating the emerging connection between cancer and metabolism, with a particular focus on mitochondrial metabolism. By using a combination of biochemistry, metabolomics, and systems biology he investigates the role of altered metabolism in cancer with the aim to understand how metabolic transformation regulates the process of tumorigenesis. His aim is to exploit these findings to establish novel therapeutic strategies and diagnostic tools for cancer.

Ross CaganWolfson Wohl Cancer Research Centre, Glasgow, UK

Professor Ross Cagan is currently Regius Professor of Precision Medicine and Royal Society Wohl Fellow at University of Glasgow and Scientific Director of the Wolfson Wohl Cancer Research Centre. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton University. After a postdoctoral fellowship at UCLA, he achieved the rank of Professor at Washington University School of Medicine (1993-2007), then at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (2007-2020). He was co-Founder and board member of the biotechnology company Medros Inc. Taking advantage of a century of powerful genetic tools, his laboratory has developed highly complex, whole animal models for cancer and inherited genetic diseases. Their work helped promote the first FDA-approved chemotherapeutic for Medullary Thyroid Carcinoma. Working with the chemist Arvin Dar and computational chemist Avner Schlessinger, his laboratory has developed a novel platform that combines genetics with medicinal and computational chemistry to build novel lead compounds that emphasize rational polypharmacology. Leveraging these new technologies, Professor Cagan leads the Center for Personalized Cancer Therapeutics team that develops and treats thyroid and colorectal cancer patients through a personalized fly-to-bedside, open label clinical trial. In this trial, ‘personalised fly avatars’ are used to identify therapeutic cocktails unique to each patient.