Rhydian Windsor studied Physics at Manchester University graduating with an MPhys. He is part of the Centre for Doctoral Training in Autonomous Intelligent Machines and Systems.

What’s your current research and how could it impact patients?

Many cancers are strongly associated with certain genes known as oncogenes being turned ‘on’ and other genes known as tumour suppressor genes being turned ‘off’. This causes a change in protein production which can lead to the development of cancer. I am currently working on using modern machine learning techniques to infer the role of a class of molecules called micro RNA in turning these genes on and off. By doing this, we can determine which molecules cause the changed protein production and hence find new targets for therapeutic intervention. I’m lucky enough to do this work as part of a collaboration between Oxford CRUK centre’s Computational Biology and Integrative Genomics group and the Oxford Applied and Theoretical Machine Learning Group in the Department of Computer Science. I’m also a member of the ESPRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Autonomous Intelligent Machines and Systems.

Why did you choose your project?

I met my current supervisor, Francesca, by chance at a college dinner and got talking to her about her research. She mentioned the project and although I had little background in the biology side I thought it was really interesting and just went from there.

And finally, any tips or advice for future students?

Try to frequently expose yourself to many other people’s research because you never know where your skills could be useful.