About the Institute
Wellcome Trust/Cancer Research UK Gurdon Institute,
The Henry Wellcome Building of Cancer and Developmental Biology,
University of Cambridge,
Tennis Court Road,
Cambridge CB2 1QN,
Tel: +44 (0)1223 334088
Fax: +44 (0)1223 334089
The Wellcome Trust/Cancer Research UK Gurdon Institute is part of Cambridge University. Funding from our two main sponsors, and other sources, supports research into the complementary areas of Cancer and Developmental Biology.
The Institute is situated in the middle of the area containing the science departments of the University of Cambridge and within a short distance from the centre of the historic city. It was founded in 1989 to promote research in the areas of developmental biology and cancer biology, and is an assemblage of independent research groups located in one building designed to promote as much interaction as possible.
Developmental and cancer biology are complementary since developmental biology is concerned with how cells acquire and maintain their normal function, whereas cancer is a result of a cell breaking loose from its correct controls and becoming abnormal. Both areas require a detailed knowledge of intercellular processes, which need to be analysed at the cellular and molecular levels. These research areas are complementary at the scientific and technical levels. To understand what goes wrong when a cell becomes cancerous requires a knowledge of the processes that ensure correct function in normal development.
At the technical level, the analysis of cellular and molecular processes requires familiarity with techniques that no single person can master, such as gene cloning, antibody preparation, cell culture, and embryonic manipulation. There is, therefore, a major benefit in having scientists with different but complementary knowledge and technical skills working in close proximity to one another.
The major sponsors of our Institute are the Wellcome Trust and Cancer Research UK, and Group Leaders are normally funded in large part by one or the other organisation. The Institute is an integrated part of Cambridge University, and all Group Leaders are affiliated to a University Department and contribute to teaching and graduate student supervision.