Studies of arginine methylation in cancer using microfluidics

Sorry, we're no longer accepting applications for this project, but take a look at our Postgraduate Research programmes for more PhD opportunities.

About this project

Arginine methylation is a protein post-translational modification that has been found to be dysregulated in a wide range of cancers. Arginine methylation is catalysed by enzymes known as protein arginine methyl transferases (PRMTs), the activity of which is often increased in cancer. Because of this, cell permeable PRMT inhibitors, which have been developed over the last decade, are currently being investigated as possible therapeutic measures for the treatment of a range of cancers in animal models, as well as in clinical trials. 

The research team at the University of Hull is a world leader in the study of tumour biology using microfluidics. The student will use microfluidics devices as a medium-throughput screening technology for identification of tumours sensitive to PRMT inhibitors. (S)he will also uncover the molecular basis of the effect of PRMT inhibitors using molecular biology and biochemistry approaches. The ultimate goal of the project is to contribute towards personalised medicine strategies in cancer by providing a completely novel route to patient stratification and therapy.

This multidisciplinary project will be done within the Biomedical Sciences Group at the newly created School of Life Sciences. To maximise translation of our findings and clinical collaborations, we share space and expertise with the Hull York Medical School, and the student will also have access to our Daisy Laboratories at Castle Hill Hospital. The team have extensive experience in PhD supervision, and the student will join a growing and vibrant research community dedicated to the improvement of cancer diagnosis and treatment.


Dr Pedro Beltran-Alvarez, Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences,

Prof John Greenman, Head, School of Life Sciences –

Next steps


Thanks to the generosity of Dr Assem Allam, we are able to offer one full-time UK/EU PhD Scholarship for candidates applying to this project.

Full-time UK/EU PhD Scholarships will include fees at the ‘home/EU' student rate and maintenance (£14,121 in 2016/17) for three years, depending on satisfactory progress.

Entry requirements

To be considered, applicants should have a First/Upper Second class degree in Pharmacology/Pharmacy/Biological Science is required, ideally with some experience of cancer biology. Studentships will start September 2017.


Find out more about our research in Biomedical Science.

How to apply

Application deadline: 17 March 2017

Research options:

PhD: 4 years (full-time)

The Postgraduate Training Scheme

PhD students at the University of Hull follow modules for research and transferable skills development and gain a Masters level Certificate, or Diploma, in Research Training, in addition to their research degree.