Professor John Chester

Professor John Chester

Research Theme Lead - Cancer

I am the Cancer Research UK Professor of Medical Oncology and Honorary Consultant at the Velindre Cancer Centre in Cardiff. I joined the Cardiff cancer research team in September 2011. I am also the Cancer Research Theme Lead in the College of Biomedical and Life Sciences.  Prior to taking up this role in the College, I was co-Director of the Institute of Cancer and Genetics, within the School of Medicine.

Amongst my various other research leadership roles are: Lead for the Cardiff Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre (ECMC); Acting Director of Cancer Research UK Centre in Cardiff; strategic lead for the Velindre Cancer Centre Phase I trials unit; and Deputy Director of the Wales Cancer Bank.

I qualified in medicine from St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School (Imperial College, London) in 1993, having previously completed a first degree in biochemistry at Oxford University and a PhD in molecular biology at the Beatson Institute for Cancer Research in Glasgow. I completed specialist training in medical oncology in 2002 and remained in Yorkshire as Clinical Senior Lecturer and Honorary Consultant in Medical Oncology at St. James’s University Hospital, Leeds until 2011.

My clinical practice has predominantly been in bladder cancer, germ cell tumours and head/neck cancers, and I have specialist clinical research interests in trials for bladder and head/neck cancers, including trials of oncolytic viruses and molecularly-targeted therapies, and in stratified medicine. My laboratory research interests include virus-mediated gene therapy and molecular biomarkers of response to cancer therapy.

Professional memberships

Outside Cardiff I serve on Cancer Research UK’s New Agents Committee and the Advisory Board for its Centre for Drug Development. I also review trial proposals on the National Cancer Research Institute’s Industry Trials Adoption Panel.  I have served on its head/neck and bladder cancer Clinical Studies Groups (CSG), where I am also a former Chair of its advanced bladder cancers sub-group.