Institute of Genetics and Cancer
Institute of Genetics and Cancer


Vision and governance of the Institute of Genetics and Cancer. Formerly the Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine (IGMM) at the University of Edinburgh.



"The joint mission of the three centres in the Institute of Genetics and Cancer is to understand development and disease by using the latest approaches in genetic, genomic, cellular and clinical science. Our focus is on research into human genetics and cancer, and on training the next generation in an outstanding environment for basic discovery science and translation."

Professor Margaret Frame FRSE FMedSci, Director of the Institute of Genetics and Cancer at the University of Edinburgh


The Institute of Genetics and Cancer at the University of Edinburgh, formed in 2007 and formerly known as the Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine, is a strategic partnership of the:

The Institute constitutes one of the largest aggregates of human molecular genetics and biology research capacity in the UK with over 70 Principal Investigators and 500 staff and PhD students. By pooling the resources and complementary skills of the constituent centres, the Institute brings together the scientific expertise, technology and support services needed to maximise scientific discovery.

The Institute enables rapid translation of basic scientific discoveries into new treatments, clinical guidelines and innovative products that have significant impact on the society in the UK and Worldwide.




The Institute constitutes an integral part of the University of Edinburgh and its activity is overviewed by the Institute Director (Professor Margaret Frame), who is supported by two groups to ensure the effective management and oversight of the Institute:

Strategic Science Planning Group

Meets annually and has the responsibility for planning and ensuring delivery of the Institutes growth and scientific development in the broadest sense, e.g. promoting translation and commercialisation, ensuring our capacity in key technologies matches our scientific growth, looking after our cohort of early career researchers and the career opportunities of all Institute staff, stimulating the contribution of the Institute to undergraduate and masters teaching in relevant areas and courses, and planning the refurbishment and expansion of the Institute estate.

Membership and areas of responsibility:
Margaret Frame Cancer
David Cameron Cancer
Tim Aitman Genomic Medicine
Wendy Bickmore Human Genetics
Nick Gilbert Graduate Research and Training
Chris Ponting Informatics and Computing
David FitzPatrick Integration with the NHS
Andy Sims Taught Education and Learning
Neil Carragher Translation and Commercialisation

Our Public Engagement leaders join the Strategic Science Planning Group as required to ensure that strategic planning is linked to new initiatives in post-graduate training and outreach.

Operational Executive Group

Meets monthly and monitors the delivery of strategic plans and oversees the day-to-day management of the Institute.

Margaret Frame as Director, CRUK Edinburgh Centre
Wendy Bickmore as Director, MRC Human Genetics Unit
Tim Aitman as Director, Centre for Genomic & Experimental Medicine
Angela Ingram Operations Manager
Stephen Lissaman Business Manager

The Operational Executive Group is supported by a number of sub-committees as shown in the Institute of Genetics and Cancer Governance chart.

Major Funders

In addition, Institute of Genetics and Cancer research is rigorously assessed by its major funders:

  • Cancer Research UK, with the CRUK Edinburgh Centre scoring Outstanding at its 2013 review
  • Medical Research Council, with the MRC Human Genetics Unit scoring 9/10 at its most recent (2011) Quinquennial Review
  • Scottish Higher Education Funding Council, with the Institute contributing hugely to the University’s submission to Unit of Assessment 1 (Clinical Medicine) in the most recent national assessment of research excellence (REF 2014; 4th equal (research power)). The papers submitted by the Institute researchers were predominantly 4*, and all were 3* or 4*.