Imperial College London


Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Surgery & Cancer

Professor of Medical Oncology



+44 (0)20 7594 2135c.coombes




Mrs Suzy Ford +44 (0)20 7594 2135




145ICTEM buildingHammersmith Campus





Professor Charles Coombes, Professor of Medical Oncology, Imperial College London. He is also Hon  Consultant Medical Oncologist, Imperial College Healthcare Trust.

From October 2010 Professor Coombes is Director of The Imperial CRUK Cancer Centre. He is also Chair  of The Imperial Cancer Research (UK) Centre Steering Committee and Theme leader for Cancer, Imperial College London.

He is engaged in developing novel methods for prediction of response to endocrine therapy in breast cancer and also carrying out research aimed at understanding the mechanisms of resistance to endocrine therapy and development of novel anti-cancer drugs.

In his capacity as Head of Division of Cancer until 30 September 2012, he was responsible for the running of the division, as well as the recruitment and retention of staff.  He is personally responsible for running the section of Cancer Cell Biology and has three CRUK Programme Grants and many other project and smaller grants.  This department currently has more than 280 scientific staff. The department has doubled in size over the past three years and now has and I4 Professors and twenty sections. 

His laboratory is focusing on elucidating molecular signals controlling aberrant growth of breast cancer cells with specific focus on the oestrogen receptor and allied cell signalling pathways. He works with scientists engaged in molecular target identification and chemists whose remit is to target specific signalling abnormalities to develop novel therapies for breast cancer.    He also runs a translational laboratory which focuses on detection of micrometastatic disease and application to the treatment of breast cancer.  He is Chairman of the International Collaborative Cancer Group. This is a multinational trial centre which is based within Imperial College focussing on phase II and phase III studies in breast cancer.

Invited Lectures

Many lectures each year: In the past two years I have been invited to give lectures in Australia, Taiwan, Japan, China, India, Brazil, Mexico, The USA, Holland, Belgium, Germany, Spain, Italy, Sweden, and Finland.

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Anderson RL, Balasas T, Callaghan J, et al., 2019, A framework for the development of effective anti-metastatic agents, Nature Reviews Clinical Oncology, Vol:16, ISSN:1759-4774, Pages:185-204

More Publications