Cancer Research UK funding
Cancer Research UK funding
The Centre team are here to help with advice on funding schemes, development of proposals and internal peer review. We also offer human factors expertise and can help translate your research towards the clinic. Whether you need clinical or EPS collaborators, we can help link up with the right people at ICR and Imperial to address key challenges in cancer. Please do not hesitate to get in touch about the following opportunities.
The Multidisciplinary Project Award funds projects up to £500k over 4 Years.
This scheme supports collaborations between cancer researchers and scientists from engineering/physical science disciplines.
Applications should ideally include:
The aim of these awards is to generate creative research ideas and explore their applicability in cancer research. These awards are awarded jointly between Principal Investigators (PI) from engineering/physical science disciplines, and PIs who are working in cancer research.
With a primary focus on multidisciplinary research, the research themes within remit for this award include:
In addition, we welcome proposals across all engineering and physical science disciplines including physics, engineering, mathematical and computational modelling, chemical and molecular sciences, materials science, molecular/tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. For more specific details of research supported by Multidisciplinary Project Awards, please refer to the scheme guidelines.
Multidisciplinary Project Awards are designed to fund individual project proposals; research proposals of a similar nature but which encompass a more detailed body of work may be more suitable for Programme Awards.
Funding support is provided for:
Primer Award - £100k up to 1 year
Project Award - £500k up to 4 Years
Programme Award - £2.5m up to 5 years
The Early Detection & Diagnosis (ED&D) Awards are designed to fund research that will enable us to understand and detect the earliest possible changes in tissues from a pre-cancerous state, into the earliest possible point at which we might be able to diagnose cancer make an intervention. These awards have now been broadened to fund an even wider range of research to reflect on the research pathway towards clinical implementation, including:
Researchers from a broad range of disciplines are eligible to apply for funding. We particularly encourage applications from engineering and the physical sciences, but you must carefully consider the specific cancer context of your research; appropriate biological and clinical collaborators are essential. This committee is also open to collaborations with industry which you might want to consider.
Post-doctoral researchers are also eligible to apply for the Primer awards as lead applicants
The Discovery Programme Award funds programmes up to £2.5m over 5 years.
Programme Awards provide long-term support for broad, multidisciplinary research where the aim is to answer an interrelated set of questions.
Applications are accepted from scientists, clinicians or health care workers in UK universities, medical schools, hospitals and some research institutions.
You should not concurrently hold a CRUK-funded Fellowship or Career Establishment Award, or a Group Leader position at a CRUK core-funded Institute. Please contact us for advice on when to apply for funding if you hold a CRUK Fellowship or a Career Establishment Award.
On completion of a Programme Foundation Award, you are expected to be in a competitive position to apply for a Discovery Programme Award.
Applications will be considered in the following areas:
As part of CRUK’s longstanding strategic partnership with the Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)(link is external), there is an opportunity for any successful applications with relevant research components in engineering and physical sciences to be jointly supported by both CRUK and the EPSRC. Applicants considering submitting a proposal with a significant multidisciplinary component are encouraged to discuss their application with the Office.
For more specific details of research supported by Discovery Research Committee Programme Awards, refer to the scheme guidelines.
Funding support is provided for:
Project award – Typically £100k per year, up to 3 years
Programme award – (no set value) up to 5 years
The Prevention & Population Research Committee (PPRC) supports clinical and public health epidemiology and educational and behavioural research on cancer prevention, screening and early diagnosis.
PPRC Awards have recently been updated and broadened to reflect research required to cover the pathway, so projects can be developed in the areas of:
Please note: Early Early diagnosis research previously funded through these awards now sits under the Early Dection and Diagnosis Research Committee
Early career researchers (those at the “develop independence” or “establish independence” career stage as defined by our competency framework) are encouraged to apply to the scheme as co- or principal applicant. Proposals with an early career researcher as principal applicant would strongly benefit from the inclusion of at least one established researcher as co-applicant, to provide mentorship.
The Biology to Prevention Awards aim to stimulate translational research that will build and use greater biological and mechanistic understanding of cancer aetiology, genesis and risk, in order to lead to precision prevention interventions. We expect applicants to clearly justify the line of sight from the proposed work to eventual impact on lowering cancer risk or incidence (as outlined in our Prevention Research Strategy).
These awards are for researchers at all career stages across any research area, including those from non-traditional cancer prevention fields (such as other non-communicable disease areas with potential common upstream causal risk factors, or those working in the context of therapeutic target identification and innovation) to engage with cancer prevention research. They support development of new collaborative partnerships, and truly interdisciplinary, innovative approaches. Collaborations between existing cancer prevention researchers (including population and behavioural scientists) and biologists, geneticists, immunologists, drug developers or other new entrants to cancer prevention research are strongly encouraged.
Areas that could be considered include but are not limited to:
The Biomarker Project Award funds up to £100k per year, over 3 years
For development, validation and qualification of biomarkers for use in the clinical setting, where the biomarker will improve or aid clinical decision making. It is strongly recommended that the study be associated with a clinical trial(s)/cohort population.
Please note: pre-clinical biomarker discovery is not in remit
Applications are accepted from:
If you have a demonstrated track record in cancer, or are a group leader at a CRUK core-funded Institute, you are not eligible to apply for this award as the lead PI, but may act as a co-investigator or collaborator.
The aim of the scheme is to build capacity in cancer immunology; therefore, if you already have a demonstrated track record in cancer research, our other opportunities in discovery research may be more suitable for your research.
Your proposal should address key questions in the immunology of cancer. Applications can be in any area of immunological research, providing the cancer relevance is clearly articulated in the proposal, including any of the following key areas:
Cellular and molecular immunology: including but not limited to mechanisms of tolerance, the regulation of immune function, the development of memory, the interaction of immune cells with tissues and enhancing the immune system’s ability to detect and destroy cancer.
Inflammation, allergy, transplantation and autoimmunity: how the basic understanding of relevant mechanisms involved could drive forward our understanding of cancer as well as how sensing of endogenous changes in immune homeostasis, such as tissue damage, impacts on the sensing and development of cancers.
Immune response to infection: including but not limited to immunity and disease susceptibility/resistance and the development of adverse infections in response to immune therapy or biological drug intervention.
If you are looking for support for the discovery and development of new biotherapeutics or immunomodulatory agents, explore our opportunities in drug discovery and development.
You can apply for funding of up to £300k, which can be used for:
Cancer Research Horizons is an innovation engine built to complement Cancer Research UK’s network of exceptional researchers. It takes cutting-edge innovations from the lab bench to the bedside, translating them into effective treatments and diagnostics for cancer patients.
With exclusive rights to over £400m of world-class cancer research each year, it is a powerful partner in the fight to conquer cancer. It works closely with academia and industry to bridge the gap between research and the market, delivering maximum impact for patients.
Data Innovation Awards - All year round
Applications for funding are welcome from academic researchers with novel insights into cancer biology that may be targeted therapeutically to treat cancer, whatever the disease type or modality.
We are seeking drug discovery proposals, including, but not limited to:
What is not in remit?
Successful projects will receive up to £250k for up to 18 months.
Funded projects will run collaboratively between academic labs and Cancer Research Horizons drug discovery experts, with joint decision making and accountability for project progression. Cancer Research Horizons will cover all direct research costs associated with the project. This includes all resource requirements within Cancer Research Horizons drug discovery laboratories and externally. Academic funding can be provided for staff time (research or technical) and any associated running expenses.
All projects will receive expertise, resource and capabilities from across CRUK and our wider investigator network. If appropriate, our Cancer Research Horizons Commercial Partnerships team will work with you to identify and engage with potential commercial partners or other options to accelerate the project to patients.
Clinical Trial Awards – £150k per year, up to 10 years
Supports clinical trials of cancer treatment, including systemic treatment, radiotherapy and surgery, with the aim of improving patient outcomes. Types of studies include:
These awards will also consider new approaches that aim to achieve equivalent survival whilst reducing toxicity, or optimising treatment delivery, when applicants can demonstrate the potential for a significant impact on patient outcomes.
The Experimental Medicine Award funds projects up to £1–5 million, over 5 years.
This scheme aims to fund highly ambitious translational research conducted in association with a clinical trial or well-designed clinical study, with the objective of optimising treatment. The findings MUST directly impact on the conduct of the trial.
The Prospective Sample Collection Award funds £15-30 per block, £5-20 per blood sample
Provides support for the prospective collection of unique samples within a clinical trial, either where specific research question cannot yet be generated, or where specific questions have been generated but the funding to carry out that work has been or will be obtained elsewhere.
Such examples of unique smaples could include:
Funding is provided for running expenses associated with the collection and pre-storage processing of blood and block samples, but not for long term storage or typically staff costs.