The MSc(Res) in Cancer Medicine will provide students with new knowledge of how precision medicine can improve and shape future healthcare. Students will gain hands-on experience of molecular techniques and the equipment/devices used in a modern molecular laboratory; the course will provide training in laboratory and research skills that are applicable across multiple scientific disciplines in a supportive learning environment. Central to this research-intensive programme is a 24-week Research Project (which runs throughout both semesters) where students undertake hands-on research training within active research teams. Through taught modules students will be able to evaluate how novel therapeutic approaches can be used to stratify patients into treatment groups for better clinical management (stratified / precision medicine). They will observe the delivery of precision medicine through tours of the Northern Ireland Cancer Centre.
There are optional modules in the second semester allowing students to explore the fundamental principles of carcinogenesis and the translational approaches (including cutting edge technologies) which allow cancer scientists and clinicians to advance our understanding and treatment of cancers.
The Precision Cancer Medicine stream provides a comprehensive overview of the current understanding of the hallmarks of cancer from the role of genetic/epigenetic alterations, cell cycle control and metastases/angiogenesis to the development of applications to help diagnose cancers earlier, improve treatments, rationally design clinical trials and reduce chemotherapy drug resistance.
The Radiation Oncology stream will develop skills in understanding the biological principles of radiotherapy and its clinical applications in the treatment of cancer. This will include the physical and chemical basis of radiation interactions and the biological consequences of radiation exposures. Clinical aspects of Radiation Oncology will be covered including the principle of advanced radiotherapy delivery, cancer imaging techniques and biomarker discovery.
The Oncology Drug Discovery stream will give an insight into both academic and biotech drug development. The course will provide an understanding of what makes an interesting anti-cancer drug target and how, as researchers, we validate this target for clinical use. In addition, you will also gain an understanding of the different drug development platforms that are currently employed for hit identification, hit to lead development and preclinical candidate selection.
Importantly, all streams show how our improved understanding of the molecular processes driving cancer growth and spread can be ‘translated’ through research-intensive MSc projects to improve the treatment and survival of cancer patients.
Cancer Medicine Highlights
The strong links between us and the biotech and biopharmaceutical sectors provide a stimulating translational environment, while also expanding your career opportunities.
The Programme will be taught in the Centre for Cancer Research & Cell Biology a purpose-built institute at the heart of the Health Sciences Campus, boasting state-of-the-art research facilities.
Internationally Renowned Experts
We have an international reputation in this area, achieved through; high-impact peer-review publications; significant international research funding and the establishment of successful spin-out companies.
Learning and Teaching
Learning opportunities associated with this course are outlined below:
At Queen’s, we aim to deliver a high-quality learning environment that embeds intellectual curiosity, innovation and best practice in learning, teaching and student support to enable students to achieve their full academic potential.
In this course, we do this by providing a range of learning experiences that enable our students to engage with subject experts, develop attributes and perspectives that will equip them for life and work that enhances their development as independent, lifelong learners.
Class times vary throughout the morning, afternoon and evening, and through a combination of course lectures, practical experiences and Self-directed study to enhance employability.
Students perform their research project throughout the programme, which may necessitate working (under supervision) at out-of-hours times, including weekends.
Assessment is by a combination of oral presentations and written assignments. The research project is written up as a dissertation.