Ruichong Ma undertook his medical degree at Oxford University. Subsequently he went to Cambridge to take up an Academic Foundation Program post. Upon completion, he returned to Oxford for specialty training and is currently an ST5 in neurosurgery as well as a CRTF under the supervision of Graham Ogg and Puneet Plaha.
What’s your current research and how could it impact patients?
My research is primarily looking at the T cell infiltration within glioblastomas, a primary brain tumour with a very poor prognosis. It is known that glioblastomas are not readily recognised by the immune system and targeted for immune mediated killing. Therefore, I am hoping to utilise this information to help find novel ways to improve the immune recognition and killing of this otherwise poorly immunogenic tumour.
Having been at Oxford for my medical degree, I was aware of the vast resources and possibilities to undertaking cutting edge research. Being a trainee here meant I was able to make contacts and set up a project so I could hit the ground running at the start of my DPhil.
Why does a typical day look like for you?
As a surgical trainee, I am used to early starts so often come to the lab early to get started wither experiments. Most of my day is spent either planning, performing or analysing my experiments. There is always plenty of interaction with the other members of the lab with lively discussion during coffee breaks and formal lab meetings. There is almost a seminar on every day to broaden my horizons and give me new ideas.