Dr Alexander Greenhough

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  • Qualifications:BSc (Warwick University), PhD (Bristol University), PGCertHE, FHEA
  • Position:Wallscourt Associate Professor
  • Department:School of Applied Sciences
  • Telephone:+4411732 86931
  • Email:Alexander.Greenhough@uwe.ac.uk
  • Social media: LinkedIn logo Twitter logo Facebook logo

About me

*I am always keen to hear from students interested in doing an MRes or a PhD in my lab. Please contact me via email or click here for details of available opportunities*

I joined UWE Bristol in 2019 as a research-focused academic and I am now the Wallscourt Associate Professor leading UWE's long-term health conditions research programme. My research focuses on cancer cell biology and the tumour microenvironment, and since joining UWE Bristol, I have won a Vice-Chancellor's Early Career Researcher Award and secured substantial external funding from Bowel Cancer UKSosei HeptaresBBSRC, and the Wellcome Trust.

I did my BSc at the University of Warwick, followed by a PhD with Prof Chris Paraskeva in the Cancer Research UK Colorectal Tumour Biology Group at the University of Bristol. I went on to hold postdoctoral positions funded by CRUK (working with Prof Ann Williams) and the BBSRC (working with Prof Karim Malik). I retain an Honorary Senior Lectureship at Bristol and maintain active collaborations.

My lab is based in the Centre for Research in Biosciences (CRIB) and we use tissue culture models of cancer (including 3D organoids) combined with omics technologies and live-cell imaging to understand how factors such as hypoxia regulate cell signalling to drive cancer development. As well as shedding light on fundamental cell biology, a goal of this research is to discover 'druggable' targets that could be used to develop new strategies to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer. Ultimately, we aim to translate this knowledge into the clinic to improve outcomes for cancer patients. Please see my Google Scholar profile for details of key publications (e.g., work published in EMBO Molecular Medicine) related to this work.

Area of expertise

1. Fundamental cell biology in health and disease: Understanding hypoxia-induced signalling mechanisms during microenvironment-driven cellular adaptation

2. Translational cancer research: Improving chemoradiotherapy outcomes in colorectal cancer patients by understanding and targeting prostaglandin signalling

3. Drug discovery: Illuminating GPCR biology and exploring novel therapeutic targets

4. Cell biology: mechanosensing during cellular stress in the intestinal epithelium.

Selected Awards

• 2023-27 UKRI BBSRC PhD Studentship (£110,592): PI (joint lead with Prof Anne Ridley, University of Bristol)
• 2022-25 Sosei Heptares PhD Studentship (£117,353): PI 
• 2021-24 Sosei Heptares PhD Studentship (£123,000): Co-I (joint with Dr Emma Vincent and Prof Ann Williams, University of Bristol)
• 2021-24 Health Education England (£113,591): Co-I (PI Aniko Varadi) 
• 2019-23 Wellcome Trust Seed Award in Science (£99,236.50): PI
• 2019-23 Bowel Cancer UK Pilot Grant (£24,969): PI
• 2019 Vice Chancellor's ECR Award (£12,963): PI
• 2019 Elizabeth Blackwell Institute Translational & Knowledge Transfer Award (£24,923): Joint lead PI (University of Bristol)
• 2011-17 Cancer Research UK Programme Award in Science (£1,200,000): Researcher Co-I (University of Bristol)

Grant panels/Peer review

• Cancer Research UK Discovery Research Committee Expert Review Panel member (invited).
• Decade Against Cancer panel member for the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, BMBF (invited).  
• Irish Cancer Society review board panel member (invited). 
• Invited reviewer: UKRI, MRC, BBSRC, CRUK (grant applications worth £300K-£2.5M). 
• Reviewer for journals including Oncogene (IF 7.9), Journal of Pathology (IF 6.3) and Autophagy (IF 9.8). 

Invited talks

• Babraham Institute, University of Cambridge, Incucyte Live Imaging User Group Conference (Oct 2023)
• King’s College London, Health Sciences Doctoral Training Centre (Mar 2022)
• University of Nottingham, Biodiscovery Institute (Nov 2020)
• Institute of Cancer Research, London (Aug 2020)
• Tumour Microenvironment Conference (Turkey) Namik Kemal University (Apr 2020)
• University of Bath, Department of Biology & Biochemistry (Feb 2020)
• UWE Bristol, CRIB Conference (Jan 2020)
• University of Bath, Genetics Society Conference (Jul 2019)


I am passionate about research-led teaching. I am involved in the design, development and delivery of teaching at all levels (years 1-3, M level, doctoral, CPD); lectures, tutorials, lab practicals, computer practicals, assessments and across a range of modules within biomedical, biological and healthcare sciences. I also lead a programme (MSc Health Technology), two modules (Cell Signalling and Disease, Diagnosis & Monitoring), and the development of genomics/bioinformatics learning resources (for modules and CPD). Project supervision (BSc, MSci, MSc, MRes, doctorate).


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