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26 January 2023

Professor Eric So receives two prestigious international grants for myeloid leukaemia research

The Sinergia programme – providing 3 million Swiss francs – is the second prestigious overseas grant awarded to Professor So’s laboratory in two months, highlighting their laboratory as an international leader in myeloid leukaemia research.

Eric So website

The laboratory of Professor Eric So has received two prestigious grants from international donors that rarely provide funding to applicants outside the donor’s country of origin. Combined, they will provide multi-million pound grants for the laboratory’s myeloid leukaemia research.

In a King’s College London first, the Sinergia programme will provide CHF 1 million (Swiss francs) funding to the laboratory of Professor Eric So, Professor and Chair in Leukaemia Biology. The funding will support investigations into the molecular mechanisms underpinning blood cancers, as part of a CHF 3 million grant. This is the second prestigious grant recently provided to the laboratory following a five-year grant of £2 million from the National Institute of Health (NIH, USA) in December 2022.

Sinergia is the Swiss National Science Foundation’s only international funding programme to provide funding to applicants from outside of Switzerland. Designed to attract overseas expertise, it’s a highly competitive programme which only considers applicants that provide expertise not available within Switzerland and are vital to the success of a project.

The four-year long programme will look at how accelerated DNA replication can both induce blood cancers and provide therapeutic targets. Professor So will work with two other principal investigators: Professors Massimo Lopes and Alexandre Theocharides at the University of Zurich.

Professor So’s laboratory will analyse how both the molecule stability of DNA during replication and the epigenetic regulation of DNA affects the development and treatment of myeloid leukaemia. The researchers hope to improve our understanding of how these molecular processes are involved in leukaemia, which will help in developing improved therapies in the longer term.

Together with the NIH grant we recently received, this Sinergia funding further attests the contributions and international leading position of our laboratory in the area of myeloid leukaemia biology.”

Professor Eric So, Professor and Chair in Leukaemia Biology

This grant follows another recent grant of £2 million from the NIH, which only provides non-US funding in rare cases where applicants offer world-class expertise unavailable within the US. Both grants highlight the internationally recognised expertise of Professor So’s laboratory within myeloid leukaemia research.

“These international awards will contribute significantly towards a better understanding of how myeloid leukaemia develop at an epigenetic level. Professor Eric So’s achievements are an exemplar of how the Cancer Centre at King’s College London engages our international academic partners, and harnesses the combined strengths of these consortia to understand disease mechanisms, as well as to advance the treatment of cancers, for improvement of clinical outcome of patients.

Professor Tony Ng, Joint Head of School, School of Cancer & Pharmaceutical Sciences

In this story

eric so

Professor and Chair in Leukaemia Biology


Richard Dimbleby Professor of Cancer Research