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2020 NIHR ACF PES Bristol Platform Science and Bioinformatics



 2020 NIHR Academic Clinical Fellowship in Priority Research Themes

HEE Local Office: South West
Medical School: University of Bristol
Research Theme: Platform Science and Bioinformatics
Specialty Options: Haematology

Plain English Summary

The Haematology Academic Clinical Fellow (ACF) will join integrated academic and clinical Haematology teams based at University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust (UHB) and the University of Bristol (UoB). The post-holder will undergo research training and will perform a research project in the platform science theme in one of the areas of existing of interest of the haematology service:

1. Molecular genetics of benign haematological disorders. The Academic Haematology group at UoB has an established research programme in which we investigate the genetic causes and mechanisms of rare blood disorders, particularly bleeding and platelet disorders and disease that affect red blood cells. The ACF will have access to national genomic and clinical data resources collected through the 100,000 Genomes Project, the NIHR BioResource Rare disease and the new NHS Genomic Medicine Service, which include large patient groups with rare blood disorders. An important component of this research is to also use clinical, laboratory and genetic data from healthy populations such as the UK BioBank, which contain genetic data from healthy individuals linked to laboratory traits such as blood count results and blood group. The Academic Research group has strong local collaborations with basic science experts based at the Faculty of Life Sciences, UoB who provide access to a broad range of laboratory techniques necessary to study the impact of genetic diseases. These include cell and small animal models of human disease, cell imaging and platform science techniques such as proteomics and metabolomics which may be utilised for the study of clinical samples.

2. Stratification and monitoring haematological malignancy. Bristol is an internationally recognised treatment centre for haematological malignancy and has pioneered platform science approaches for using platform science technique to improve the care of patient with disorders such as acute lymphoblastic leukaemia and detection of minimal residual leukaemia disease (Dr John Moppett and Dr Allison Blair). The post-holder will have the opportunity to join several projects that link the clinical leukaemia service to platform science laboratory research, including development and testing of new diagnostic tests to identify patients with malignant blood disorders that require specific treatment approaches.

The post-holder will join an established Clinical Academic Training (CAT) programme in Haematology overseen by Professor Andrew Mumford. The research component of the fellowship will require the post-holder to develop skills in bio-informatics and statistical genetics and to apply these to haematological disorders. The post-holder will join an active research team comprising existing members of the CAT programme and a core academic team comprising a Clinical Lecturer and Senior Clinical Lecturer in Haematology and laboratory staff.