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Prof Mark Gumbleton  -  BPharm MSc PhD MRPharmS

Staff picture of Prof Mark Gumbleton
Position:Professor of Experimental Therapeutics and Director of Research

Telephone:+44 (0)29 208 75449
Location:Redwood Building


  • Graduated B.Pharm (1982) 
  • Ph.D (1988) Biochemical Pharmacology and Pharmacokinetics (University of Wales). 
  • Professional Registration RPSGB (1983) 
  • Clinical Pharmacology specialisation (M.Sc) School of Medicine University of Aberdeen (1985). 
  • Postdoctoral fellowship and Research Specialist appointments in Biopharmaceutics and Clinical Pharmacology (University of California, San Francisco 1998-1992).

Research Interests:

Hypothesis-driven science surrounding issues at the interface between the nature of biological barriers and experimental therapeutics  The laboratory maintains a wide range of techniques ranging from cell and molecular biology through to ex-vivo and in-vivo models to address the scientific issues. There are two principle areas within the laboratory’s research strategy  include blood-barrier-barrier and in the developing area of brain tumour research.


In collaboration with Professor Geoff Pilkington at the Brain Tumour Research Centre of Excellence at Portsmouth University the laboratory in Cardiff is undertaking  brain tumour research, with particular  focus on gliomas and the cancer stem cell phenotype.  Malignant gliomas display an ability to invade into healthy brain tissue and to resist drug and radiation treatments. The features of advanced glioma suggest this tumour type possesses enhanced cancer stem cell (CSC)-like characteristics.   The CSC  theory considers tumours to comprise heterogeneous cell populations with varying capacities for self-renewal, proliferation and invasion. One or more  of these subpopulations act as cancer-initiating cells responsible for tumour initiation and perpetuation. The specific targeting of CSCs offers the potential to effectively eliminate tumours of drug-resistant and metastatic cell populations.

Blood Brain Barrier: 

In collaboration with major European networks and industry this area of work is focused  on biological barriers and specifically the blood-brain-barrier (BBB).  The lab is involved in exploring the interactions of the cell types within the neurovascular unit, and determining mechanisms by which therapeutic macromolecules, peptides and supramolecular structures, e.g. nanoparticles, may permeate the BBB to access  brain parenchyma.  This includes the design novel entities. 

Member of the School's Drug Delivery & Microbiology Research Discipline 


Current Teaching Profile:

Contribute to all years of the M.Pharm

  • PH1109 - Immunology elements
  • PH2204 - Pharmaceutical Biotechnology and Clinical Immunology
  • PH3104 - Blood-Brain Barrier
  • PH3107 - Pharmacokinetic-Pharmacodynamic elements
  • PH4105 - Problem solving in Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • PH4112 - Pharmacy Advanced Research Specialisation