Timothy Illidge

Timothy Illidge, BSc PhD FRCP FRCR FRCPath


Personal profile


Professor of Targeted Therapy and Oncology, University of Manchester and Honorary Consultant in Clinical Oncology at Christie Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

My collaborations

Senior Lecturer

Dr Jamie Honeychurch

Post-doctoral Research Scientists

Dr Eleanor Cheadle

Dr Urszula Cytlak

Dr Debayan Mukherjee

Dr Erminia Romano

Dr Ana Vitlic

Dr Xiaomeng Wang

Clinical Fellow PhD Student

Dr Shuhui Cheng

PhD Students

Victoria Smith

Nabina Pun

Olivia Steel

Sotia Zenios


Research interests

Radiotherapy (RT) is a highly effective tumouricidal cancer treatment delivered to around 50-60% of all cancer patients.  However the potent immunomodulatory properties of RT have only recently been investigated. RT can induce a variety of immunogenic and phenotypic changes in the tumour cells and recalibrate the immune contexture of the tumour microenvironment . If the immunoregulatory effects of RT could be exploited there is the potential to significantly increase the anti-cancer effect of RT.  

The recent major breakthrough of the immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICI) anti-CTLA-4 (cytotoxic T-Lymphocyte-associated protein 4) and anti-PD-1/PD-L1 (programmed death-ligand 1) has led to durable remissions and improved survival in a number of incurable metastatic cancers. This remarkable clinical efficacy has established immunotherapy as another effective form of cancer therapy and stimulated the “immunotherapy revolution” leading to the large scale development of a new class of therapeutics termed immuno-oncology (IO) agents. Despite this excitement surrounding IO agents, currently only the minority of patients respond to immune checkpoint inhibition with anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody (mAb) and combination approaches are being explored to increase response rates.

Given that both RT and IO agents can enhance anti-tumour immunity, this provides a sound rationale for the development of RT and IO combination strategies which have the potential to transform the management of cancer and substantially increase the efficacy of RT. However rapid successful clinical translation of RT and IO combinations requires preclinical experimentation to inform clinical trial design by increasing the chances of delivering clinical effectiveness and thus reducing the time taken to achieve the goal of improved outcomes. Our current programme of research aims to address some of the most important questions regarding the potential of translating RT and IO agent combinations to improve cancer outcomes




MRes Oncology

BSc Pathology course

Memberships of committees and professional bodies

Fellow of Royal College of Radiologists

Fellow of Royal College of Physicians (Edinburgh)

Fellow of Royal College of Pathologists

Methodological knowledge

Tumour immunology

anti-cancer antibodies




Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

External positions

CRUK science commitee

1 Sept 2018 → …

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Lydia Becker Institute
  • Manchester Cancer Research Centre


  • Cancer, immunology, lymphoma, antibodies, immunotherapy, radiotherapy


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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