Professor Dean Fennell

Professor FennellChair of Thoracic Medical Oncology,
Cancer Research UK Centre Leicester, University of Leicester and University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust

Contact details

  • Tel: 0116 258 7603
  • Email:,
  • Office: Level 2, Osborne Building, Leicester Royal Infirmary, Leicester Royal Infirmary, and Laboratory 411, 4th Floor, Hodgkin Building.

Personal details

  • PhD
  • FRCP

Appointed to my current post in 2012, I initially qualified with a first class degree in Pharmacology followed by Medicine and Surgery from University College London (UCL).

After basic specialist training at UCL, Hammersmith, Brompton, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals in London I obtained membership of the Royal College of Physicians, followed by a PhD in Oncology as a MRC Clinical research fellow in UCL. I completed training in Medical Oncology at St Bartholomew’s Hospital and then undertook back-to-back Cancer Research UK (CRUK) Clinician Scientist Fellowships based at the CRUK Centre in Belfast.

I was elected fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (London) in 2007. I also served two terms on the board of the European Organisation for Reasearch and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC), lead a translational research laboratory and international clinical trials portfolio focused on translating novel precision medicine strategies from the lab to the clinic.

I'm the current president of the International Mesothelioma interest group, co-chairing the global meeting in the UK in 2016. I was also a planning committee member of the 2016 International  Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) world lung cancer conference. I have writen more than 100 publications in journals including Lancet, Lancet Oncology, Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, Nature Communications and Journal of the National Cancer Institute.



Prizes and honours

Ist year - Best Performance
2nd year - Heinz Schild Prize

Biochemistry, Pharmacology, Neurology, Surgery, Clinical Pharmacology, Respiratory Medicine.

American Society of Haematology award

Chairs, boards and steering groups

  • 2012 - President Elect, IMIG
  • 2010, 2011 - IASLC Fellowships Committee
  • 2010, 2011 - ASCO-NCI-EORTC Planning Committees
  • 2010, 2008, 2006 - IMIG (Conference Chair 2008 & 2006)
  • 2009 - AACR-NCI-EORTC Scientific Committee Conference
  • 2004 - British Thoracic Oncology Group, former Faculty IASLC
  • Member - UKLCC Virtual MDT
  • IACR Council
  • EORTC lung group
  • NCRI lung studies group, mesothelioma subgroup and new agents group
  • CCRB Steering Committee
  • International panel for adenocarcinoma classification
  • MK0683-014-04 phase III vorinostat mesothelioma steering Scientific Committee



Research students

  • Dr Ed Law, PhD

Postdoctoral scientists

  • Dr Sara Busacca
  • Dr Shona rlshaw


House of Lords Medical Innovation Bill Google Hangout
February 2014

Leicester at the heart of new research to revolutionise understanding of lung cancer
July 2013

Pill lets lung cancer patients live twice as long
December 2012

Blog: Mesothelioma - Jan's journey
April 2012

BBC East Midlands Today Interview on Mesothelioma
October 2013 (with kind permission for use by the BBC)

Asbestos research: British Lung Foundation workshop
April 2011

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Congratulations to all of the MPTC MSc 2017-18 graduating students; in particular to Lilas Al Boushi who was awarded the Sydney King Prize as the best performing student.


The LCRC would like to say a huge “Congratulations” to Sam Khan, Bethan Rogoyski and Sarah Whelan, who scooped a plethora of awards at the 42nd Annual UKEMS Meeting held in Oxford from 2-5th September 2018.  Sam won best oral presentation for "targeting cancer stem-like cells in colorectal cancer" and Bethan and Sarah won young scientist poster awards for "From anti-helminth to anti-cancer: repurposing drugs to prevent mesothelioma" and "Harnessing the link between BRAF-mediated tumourigenesis and metabolism in colorectal cancer", respectively.  WELL DONE ALL!


In a recent exercise undertaken by the NCRI’s Clinical and Translational Radiotherapy Research Working Group (CTRad) Leicester was rated as internationally competitive/leading in the Radiation Biology Research domain, one of just four centres in the UK to achieve this rating in that domain.


All the staff and students in the LCRC extend their congratulations to Bethan Rogoyski and Sam Khan for being awarded travel bursaries from UKEMS and Health Education England respectively so they could attend the Cancer Prevention Conference in Germany.

Bethan presented her poster entitled “From Asbestos to Zinc – Can We Prevent Mesothlioma Using Repurposed Drugs?”

Sam presented her work on TBS2017-122-SK - "Targeting Nanog in colorectal tissue explant models for the evaluation of cancer prevention agents"


Congratulations from the LCRC to the following postgraduate student(s)

Saraa Barsoom on passing her viva  and being awarded her PhD on 16th August 2018


Tumour analysis following surgery could provide breakthrough in predicting how well cancer patients respond to drug treatment

Details here


New: Wellcome Trust Institutional Strategic Support Fund



Centre Health and Wellbeing Group
Join up for a walk on the park Friday lunchtime - details here.

More information from Jenny McNair

Contact Details

Leicester Cancer Research Centre
Clinical Sciences Building
University of Leicester
Leicester Royal Infirmary
Leicester LE2 7LX

T: +44 (0) 116 252 3170

(Please note this email address should not be used for clinical referrals or patient correspondence)

Maps and Directions

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