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Gavin studied Cell Biology at Durham University for his undergraduate degree before moving to the University of Cambridge Department of Pathology for his PhD where he investigated epigenetic mechanisms in lymphomagenesis in the laboratory of Prof. Suzanne Turner. He continued working on this project as a post-doctoral research associate before obtaining funding from the CRUK Pioneer Award to design a novel platform for anti-cancer drug discovery using bacterial-human cell co-culture. Gavin then moved to the MRC Toxicology Unit in Leicester, working in the laboratory of Prof. Anne Willis before relocating with the unit to Cambridge. During this time Gavin developed a novel colorimetric test for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 3CLpro and investigated the role of tRNA modifications in cancer. He is now working on a collaborative project understanding how we can minimise potential toxicity of anti-sense oligonucleotide therapies for Huntington's disease and cancer.


Research interests:

Gavin is passionate about improving our understanding of cancer and other disease states at a molecular and cellular level, and using this knowledge to develop new treatments that effectively target cancer and other diseases while minimising harmful side effects to improve the lives of patients.




Key publications: 

Garland GD, Patil KR, Turner SD and Willis AE. The Pioneer platform: a novel approach for selection of selective anti-cancer cytotoxic activity in bacteria through co-culturing with engineering human cells. PLOS One (in submission). (2023).

Garland GD, Harvey RF, Mulroney TE, Monti M, Fuller S, Haigh R, Pereyra Gerber P, Barer MR, Matheson NJ and Willis AE. Development of a colorimetric assay for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 3CLpro activity. Biochem J; 479(8):901-920. (2022).

Garland GD, Ducray SP, Jahangiri L, Pucci P, Amos Burke GA, Monahan J, Lai R, Merkal O, Schiefer A, Kenner L, Bannister AJ and Turner SD. BRG1 and NPM-ALK Are Co-Regulated in Anaplastic Large-Cell Lymphoma; BRG1 Is a Potential Therapeutic Target in ALCL. Cancers; 14(1):151. doi: 10.3390/cancers14010151. (2021).

Research Associate

Contact Details

MRC Toxicology Unit
Gleeson Building
Tennis Court Road


Telephone and Email