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Tumour Necrosis Factor (TNF) is a pro-inflammatory cytokine. It regulates a complex signalling network able to trigger cell survival, as well as cell death via apoptosis or necrosis/necroptosis. Dysregulation of these processes is a hallmark of a myriad of disorders, including most prominently inflammatory diseases and tumour.

In a previous study, we found that conformational TNF carries the function of stimulating cell survive while peptides derived from TNF induce cell death, including apoptosis, necrosis or necroptosis.

A DPhil student is wanted to further exploit the project. The student will lead the project
flexibly into the following directions:

  1. The role of TNF related inflammation in tumours (e.g. pancreatic cancer);
  2. The application of TNF related cell death in treating tumours
  3. The role and application of TNF related inflammation and cell death in other diseases (e.g neuropathogenesis)

 Training opportunities:

The student will be trained to ask scientific questions and to address the questions by setting up
strategic goals and project design and development. The lab is focused on translational research,
therefore, in addition to essential lab skills, the student will have opportunities to gain knowledge
of translational research and to collaborate with biotech industry.

Recent publications:

  • Lu W, Chen Q, Ying S, Xia X, Yu Z, Lui Y, Tranter G, Jin B, Song C, Seymour LW, and Jiang S. Evolutionarily conserved primary TNF sequences relate to its primitive functions in cell death induction. Journal of Cell Science 2016; 129(1): 108 – 120.
  • Lu, W., Wang, Y., Zhang, Q., Owen, S., Green, M., Ni, T., . . . Jiang, S. TNF-derived peptides inhibit tumour growth and metastasis through cytolytic effects on tumour lymphatics. Clinical and experimental immunology 2019; 198:198-211. doi:10.1111/cei.13340