Preclinical Radiotherapy Combination Grants

About this scheme

Key information

Career level
Non-clinical researcher
Established independent researcher
Early career researcher
Research area
Pre-clinical research
Drug development
Radiotherapy research
Biomarker research
Cancer biology
Funding period
6 to 12 months
Funding amount
up to £50,000
Develop your ideas for new combination treatments with radiotherapy for cancer from your laboratory to a trial in cancer patients

To apply to this scheme:

  • You must be based at a UK academic institution.
  • You or one of your co-investigators should be a clinical investigator with relevant early clinical oncology trials expertise (we can help you identify a suitable clinical investigator).

Your project will:

  • Investigate a novel combination with radiotherapy which may include small molecule or biotherapeutic agents.
  • Include at least one novel agent.
  • Aim to generate preclinical in vitro and in vivo data that will inform your decision to move to a clinical study.

The scheme is not appropriate for large screening proposals or routine preclinical experimentation.

NAC Preclinical Grants provide 6 to 12 months funding of up to £50,000 to cover:

  • Salaries of post-doctoral and technical staff
  • Equipment and running expenses that are specific to the project

How to apply to this scheme

Before making your application

If you are still not sure that your proposal is right for this scheme, please contact Dr James Ritchie to discuss your application.

​Overview of the application process

  1. Submit your application online using our electronic Grants Management System
  2. The New Agents Committee (NAC) reviews your application
  3. After NAC review, you are given the outcome and feedback within 3 weeks
  4. If approved, you may have to respond to feedback before your grant is issued

Your application should include:

  • The underpinning scientific rationale
  • The clinical trial concept and medical rationale which informs your proposal
  • Views on how you plan to obtain drug supply for your preclinical studies and a future clinical trial (if your project is approved, we can help)
  • Comments from RaDCom

Where appropriate, the output will include:

  • Data on pharmacodynamics (PD) markers that may help direct optimal scheduling or identify potential human PD markers for use in the clinical trial
  • Some understanding of the relevance of exposure attained with accompanying PD readout
  • Some exploration of optimal schedule of the combination and/or mechanism of action

You should try to avoid:

  • Routine preclinical experimentation
  • Combinations which are already in the clinic (if other drugs in the same class are already in clinical development, explain the rationale for developing your agent and what differentiates it)

Applications will be judged on:

  • Scientific rationale and importance
  • Uniqueness/novelty of the targets or agents
  • Quality of supporting data in relevant models
  • Significance of the proposed combination trial and its endpoints
  • Clinical need
  • Excellence and suitability of the team and environment

Cancer Research UK contact details

kate searleKate Searle

Research Funding Manager

Tel: +44 (0) 20 3469 6929

Consultant clinical oncologist, Mark Saunders

Mark is a Consultant Clinical Oncologist at Christie Hospital in Manchester. He is funded by our New Agents Committee.

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Clinical lead in early phase trials, James Spicer

James Spicer set up and now runs the Cancer Early Phase Trials programme at Guy’s and St Thomas’. He's the lead investigator on a CRUK Centre for Drug Development project.

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