Dr Mihaela Lorger

Dr Mihaela Lorger


I am head of Brain Metastasis Research Group. We are studying the biology of brain metastases, with a particular focus on tumour immunology, immunotherapy and gene therapy.

Current roles:

  • Member of the Educational Committee of the European Association of Neuro-Oncology (EANO)
  • Member of the Breast Cancer Now (BCN) Tissue Access Committee
  • Member of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) Pool of Experts
  • Member of the Neuropathology Research Tissue Bank Management Group at the University of Leeds

Previous roles:

  • Member of the Animal Welfare and Ethical Review Committee (AWERC) at the University of Leeds (2014 – 2018)
  • Chair of the St. James’s Biomedical Services (SBS) user group at the University of Leeds (2017 – 2021)
  • Member of the University of Leeds Biomedical Services (ULBS) committee (2017 – 2021)
  • Member of the Joint Research Tissue Bank Management Committee, University of Leeds (2012 – 2022)


  • Deputy programme lead for MSc in Molecular medicine
  • Module lead for MSc in Cancer biology and molecular oncology

Research interests

Our research is funded by research grants from MRC, BBSRC and Breast Cancer Now (BCN). We are studying brain metastases with a specific focus on:

  • Mechanisms of immune checkpoint inhibition with a focus on dendritic cells, natural killer cells and the immune system cross-talk between the brain and periphery
  • Lentiviral hematopoietic stem cell gene therapies targeting brain tumours
  • Mechanisms of cancer cell dormancy in the brain


  • PhD Biology
  • MSc Molecular Biology

Professional memberships

  • British Society for Immunology
  • European Association of Neuro-Oncology
  • Metastasis Research Society

Student education

Roles in Student education:

  • Deputy Programme Lead for MSc Molecular Medicine
  • Module Lead for MSc Cancer Biology and Molecular Oncology MEDM5221M
  • I teach cell biology and metastasis on several MSc modules and MBChB

I supervise the following PhD students:

  • Scott Gregory, MRC DiMeN DTP PhD student, final year (main supervisor)
  • Yolanda Dyah Kartika, PhD student, final year (main supervisor)
  • Dr. Fiona James, clinical PhD student and MRC Clinical Research Training Fellow, 2nd year (main supervisor)
  • Zarnaz Hadi, MRC DiMeN DTP PhD student (main supervisor together with Prof. David Westhead)
  • Mingcheng Song, PhD student (co-supervisor with Dr. Robert Salmond)
  • Ailish McCafferty, MRC DiMeN DTP PhD student (co-supervisor with Dr. Clive McKimmie)


Research groups and institutes

  • Leeds Institute of Medical Research at St James's

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>
    <li><a href="//phd.leeds.ac.uk/project/214-limr-immunotherapy:-manipulating-t-cell-metabolism-to-improve-anti-tumour-immunity">LIMR Immunotherapy: Manipulating T cell metabolism to improve anti-tumour immunity</a></li>