Research Associate (Cancer Early Detection)

University of Cambridge - Department of Oncology

Cancer survival rates are highest when diagnosed at an early stage, therefore accurate and scalable tests could make a significant contribution to reducing the number of cancer deaths (8.2m/year worldwide in 2012). To realise this goal, while avoiding over-diagnosis, we are developing sensitive, specific and minimally invasive tests that could inform the early detection and stratification of prostate cancers. Our projects build on the results of large-scale molecular profiling studies to implement targeted high-sensitivity genomic analyses of circulating tumour DNA (ctDNA) in liquid biopsies. Molecular markers include recurrent genomic alterations and epigenetic changes that are detectable in early stage cancers.

We are looking for a Research Associate to join our collaborative research team and make a significant contribution to detecting cancers at an earlier and treatable stage. The successful candidate will work closely with group members and collaborators from molecular diagnostic labs, STEM groups and clinical colleagues to develop and test ctDNA assays that could be implemented in the diagnostic pathway. Organisational skills and extensive experience with high-throughput genomic assays are a requirement for these posts.  Previous experience of genomics method development, molecular diagnostics, epigenomics or histopathology methods would be an advantage.

Our group is embedded within the world-class infrastructure on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, in the CRUK Cambridge Centre Early Detection Programme ( and the Department of Oncology at the University of Cambridge ( We work closely with clinical colleagues (Addenbrooke's Hospital), industrial collaborators (AstraZeneca) and other research groups nationally and internationally to advance research on cancer early detection and precision medicine.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 3 years in the first instance.

Once an offer of employment has been accepted, the successful candidate will be required to undergo a health assessment and a security check. This appointment also requires a Research Passport application.

To apply online for this vacancy and to view further information about the role, please visit: This will take you to the role on the University’s Job Opportunities pages. There you will need to click on the 'Apply online' button and register an account with the University's Web Recruitment System (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

Please ensure that you upload a covering letter and CV in the Upload section of the online application. If you upload any additional documents which have not been requested, we will not be able to consider these as part of your application.

Please include details of your referees, including email address and phone number, one of which must be your most recent line manager.

Closing date for applications is the 19th December 2017, with interview dates yet to be confirmed by the department.

Please quote reference RD14072 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

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South East England