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Fengyun Zhong


DPhil student

Dissecting the role of B cells in the context of anti-tumour responses in colorectal cancer

I earned my Bachelor of Medicine degree from Peking University in 2023 before I came to Oxford to pursue my DPhil degree. During my undergraduate years, I completed a clinical clerkship at Peking University People's Hospital and actively participated in research at the Department of GI Surgery. My focus was on multidisciplinary treatment approaches, particularly neoadjuvant therapy for GI cancer. I delved into investigating the intricate role of the immune microenvironment in treatment responses, enriching my understanding of the dynamic interplay between clinical practice and research.

As a beneficiary of the CSC-COI program and the CSC funding, I joined Dr. Pedroza-Pacheco's group under the co-supervision of Prof. Elliott in 2023. Our collective research interest revolves around tertiary lymphoid structures (TLSs) in cancer, which are characterized as structured, secondary-lymphoid-organ-like immune aggregates within tumour tissues.

In my research, I've chosen to concentrate on B cells, pivotal figures within these immune "communities". My aim is to elucidate the phenotypes, distribution, cell interactions, and functions of B cells in colorectal cancer. By doing so, I aspire to provide a novel perspective on understanding the heterogeneity of patients' treatment responses and survival, contributing to advancements in patient stratification, personalised treatment and ultimately the prognosis of patients.