Madhumeeta Chadha recently joined The Institute of Cancer Research, London as a BRC-supported PhD student under the supervision of Dr Paul Huang, leader of the Molecular and Systems Oncology team. Image Madhumeeta Chadha: PhD student Madhumeeta discusses her PhD project, which focuses on developing methods to predict how sarcoma patients will respond to treatment. Bridging the gap between the lab and the clinic Before beginning my PhD, I studied for a Masters in Biotechnology at Maharaja Sayajiroa Univerity in Gujarat and then worked as a junior research fellow, investigating diabetes and kidney disorders in a clinical proteomics lab. My PhD project is focusing on soft tissue sarcomas, which are a group of rare cancers affecting the tissues that support, connect and surround organs: there are more than 100 types of sarcoma and the prognosis is often poor. My research will analyse proteins from patient biopsies in order to identify characteristics (called biomarkers) which could predict whether the patient is likely to respond to a particular treatment, including chemotherapy and radiotherapy. I hope to bridge the gap between the lab and the clinic by developing a process that will enable protein analysis of patient biopsies to be incorporated into routine clinical practice. Gaining clinical expertise to tackle the challenges of cancer Carrying out my PhD at The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust and the ICR provides a unique opportunity to work with clinicians and clinical fellows. I hope that this will enable me to gain additional clinical expertise, to help tackle some of the numerous challenges faced in fighting cancer. Future ambitions I hope to implement the knowledge that I will gain by working in this translational space – taking my research from the lab to the clinic - to improve the healthcare field in the future, through either academia or in industry.