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Dr Coulter’s research group are driving the development of novel experiment medicines designed to enhance the effectiveness of existing therapeutics.

Over recent years the focus of his work has been on the design, characterisation and pre-clinical evaluation of biologically inert gold nanoparticles, with the aim of using these particles to increase the sensitivity of tumour cells to ionising radiation (predominantly X-rays).

Tumour specific nanoparticles have been designed to exploit the tumour micro-environment response to radiation or chemotherapy treatment, to specifically target cancer stem cell populations, and using unique systemic delivery systems to improve treatment efficacy.

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Open to PhD applications in the field of Nano-therapeutics, radiobiology, radiopharmaceuticals, DNA damage, cancer stem cells, drug resistance, 3-dimentional bio-assays.

  • Brachytherapy/gold nanoparticle combinations
  • Solid tumour nanoparticle transport models 
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Research students

PhD Title:  Studying the Effects of Honey Vinegar on Breast Cancer Cell Lines and on Tumour Infiltrating Lymphocytes (TILs) Obtained from Malignant Breast Tissue in Vitro

Name: Mrs Nermeen Moustafa
Years of Study: 2012-2016
Country: Egypt

PhD Title: Identifying and targeting prostate cancer stem cells to achieve improved treatment outcomes

Name: Miss Shannon O'Neill
Years of Study: 2015-2018
Country: Northern Ireland


PhD Title: Promoting Prostate Cancer Cell Death Using Targeted Gold Nanoparticles 

Name: Miss Natalie Owen
Years of Study: 2015-2018
Country: England

Alumni: where are they now?

Dr James Nicol

PhD Title: Radiation dose enhancement: The development and application of radiosensitising gold nanoparticles

Years of Study: 2012-2016
Country: Northern Ireland
Current position: Post doctoral research fellow in Coulter lab


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Research at Queen's

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