Abigail Collins
DPhil Student
College: Magdalen College
Location: Institute of Biomedical Engineering

Abby (Abigail) graduated from Imperial College London with first class honours in Biomedical Engineering (MEng). Her final year project was under the supervision of Dr. Rylie Green, developing her “Living Electrodes” construct for improved brain-machine interfaces.

In 2019, she was awarded a full scholarship to fund her research with Prof. Angela Koehler at the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT, which focused on target validation in cancer research.

Abigail’s highly multidisciplinary research focuses on device-enhanced immuno-oncology, using low-intensity focused ultrasound in combination with protein-based sonosensitive nanoparticles (P-CaNs) to initiate an immune response to solid tumours.

Her DPhil encompasses:

  • Ultrasound physics and nonlinear acoustic dynamics.
  • Novel protein-based solid nanoparticles as acoustic cavitation nuclei.
  • Optimisation of immunotherapy for cancer.

Ultimately her project aims to revolutionise the treatment of solid tumours through the non-invasive stimulation of the innate immune system, leading to immune-cell-mediated breakdown of the stimulated tumour and distant metastases, with the goal of complete clearance of cancer from the patient.


Device-Enhanced Immuno-Oncology

Optimising the response of solid tumours to immunotherapy using ultrasound and sonosensitive nanoparticles.

Abigail is a recipient of the Oxford-Bellhouse Graduate Scholarship.

She was awarded both the President’s Undergraduate Scholarship and the IET Great Exhibition Scholarship (supported by the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851) for her undergraduate studies.

Alongside her studies, she has worked extensively in science communication with the Royal Institution of Great Britain.