Professor Jenkins’s research falls within the “Biomarkers and Genes” theme of the Medical School.

His research group investigate the molecular basis of cancer in the gastrointestinal tract, particularly the pre-malignant condition; Barrett’s Oesophagus. Group aims are to develop early detection systems for cancer. His blood based cancer detection approach (based on Pig A gene mutations in red blood cells) recently received a lot of media interest. His group investigate DNA damage levels in Barrett’s patients and NF-kB signalling induced in oesophageal tissues. The research is aimed at better understanding early carcinogenesis and to identify diagnostic markers for clinical utility. Professor Jenkins also collaborates with others in the areas of colorectal cancer biology and pancreatic cancer.

He is also an internationally recognised researcher in the field of Genetic Toxicology (DNA damage), being at the forefront of research efforts to improve in vitro (cell-based) assessment of genotoxic risks from chemical exposure. Current work centres on mechanistic studies of genotoxic thresholds, 3-D tissue models for genotoxicity and coupling genotoxic assessment with disruption of other cell biological processes (cell cycle, cell signalling, cell morphology).

Professor Jenkins was appointed to the UK Government’s Committee on Mutagenicity (COM) in 2009, was appointed a “Research Leader” by Health and Care Research Wales in 2012 and was appointed Senior Editor of Mutagenesis in 2016. He has received over £3million in grant income, written over 70 peer-reviewed papers and edited a book on the toxicology of Bile acids. Professor Jenkins is the head of research at the Medical School. He has an Honorary position at Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University (ABMU) Health Board.

Areas of Expertise

  • DNA mutation
  • Cancer Biomarkers
  • Oesophageal cancer
  • Safety Assessment
  • Genetic Toxicology

Publications

  1. & A Newly Developed Nested PCR Assay for the Detection of Helicobacter pylori in the Oral Cavity. Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology, 1
  2. & Extensive telomere erosion is consistent with localised clonal expansions in Barrett’s metaplasia. PLOS ONE 12(3), e0174833
  3. & Critical review of the current and future challenges associated with advancedin vitrosystems towards the study of nanoparticle (secondary) genotoxicity. Mutagenesis 32(1), 233-241.
  4. & Development of an in vitro PIG-A gene mutation assay in human cells. Mutagenesis 32(2), 283-297.
  5. & Genetic and Epigenetic Intra-tumour Heterogeneity in Colorectal Cancer. World Journal of Surgery 41(5), 1375-1383.

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Teaching

  • PM-304 Biomolecular Research Project

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  • PM-317 Genetics of Cancer

    This module will provide students with an advanced understanding about the genetic mechanisms involved in carcinogenesis, and how these underlying processes and molecules affect the human body.

  • PM-M16 Nano(geno)toxicology

    Nano(geno)toxicology is a new discipline that has recently evolved with the development of the nanotechnology industry. This subject encompasses general toxicology associated with nanomaterials and also specifically focuses on the sub-discipline of genotoxicology. This course will therefore focus on, (I) the parameters of engineered nanomaterials that govern their interaction and influence on biological systems; (II) techniques that are central elements in assessing the safety evaluation of nanomaterials; (III) portals of entry into the body, their potential fate and the mechanisms that underlie cellular damage by nanomaterials.

  • PM-M28 Nano(geno)toxicology

    PM-M28 is a Taught Masters level module that focusses upon the field of Nanoparticle (geno)toxicology. The module is worth 20 credits. It occurs in the second semester, and is administered through both lecture-based and practical components. Students are taught by a variety of lecturers from academia, industry and clinical medicine. Students are assessed via both coursework (two (2) pieces) and examination. Briefly, Nano(geno)toxicology is a new, multi-interdisciplinary discipline that has evolved concomitantly with the development of the nanotechnology industry. The syllabus of this taught module encompasses general toxicology associated with nanomaterials (hazard and exposure assessments), their genetic toxicology implications, their physical and material properties as well as their applied formulations and scenarios. The module further provides insight into all these areas from the view of not only academia, but also industry and clinical medicine.

Supervision

  • Characterization of alginate-mucin glycan interaction for tailored therapeutic development in cystic fibrosis (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
    Other supervisor: Prof Paul Lewis
    Other supervisor: Dr Thomas Wilkinson
  • 'In vitro assessment of genotoxicity and cell cycle abnormalities to better understand carcinogenic risk' (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
    Other supervisor: Prof Shareen Doak
  • Development of a novel in vitro liver 3D model to assess potential (geno)toxicity of nanomaterials (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Shareen Doak
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
  • The effect of chronic dosing regimes on genotoxic hazard identification (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
    Other supervisor: Prof Shareen Doak
  • Defining the mechanisms driving genomic variation and virulence in Helicobacter pylori and identifying the genes/alleles responsible. (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Thomas Wilkinson
    Other supervisor: Prof Thomas Humphrey
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
  • An investigation of the clinical and patient reported outcomes following surgically treated pancreatic cancer in Wales? (current)

    Student name:
    MD
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
    Other supervisor: Prof Hayley Hutchings
  • Development and characterisation of prostate cancer spheroids for drug evaluation (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Shareen Doak
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
  • Mechanistic Investigation of the Epigenetic Aberrations Underlying Colorectal Cancer and its Resistance to Therapy (current)

    Student name:
    MD
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
    Other supervisor: Prof Shareen Doak
  • Untitled (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Shareen Doak
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
  • Blood based chemotherapy response monitoring (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
    Other supervisor: Prof Shareen Doak
  • Development of a blood based biomarker for early GI tract cancer (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
    Other supervisor: Prof Shareen Doak
  • Blood-based test for pancreatic cancer (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
    Other supervisor: Prof Shareen Doak
  • 'Investigations into novel diagnostic biomarkers for oesophageal adenocarcinoma' (awarded 2017)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Gareth Jenkins
    Other supervisor: Prof Steve Conlan