Main Goals

This highly selective interdisciplinary PhD program is aimed at forming the next generation of leaders in basic and translational cancer prevention research and project development. Exceptional students who are passionate about understanding the basic biology and/or epidemiology of cancer and cancer risks, with their human and societal impact, are welcome to apply.

The program brings together an impressive list of world experts from different countries under the roof of the newly established International Cancer Prevention Institute (ICPI) to support collaborative research projects on three major topics:

  1. Molecular and cellular genetics
  2. Human pathology
  3. Epidemiology

The main goals of the program are to promote international education and interdisciplinarity on the following sub-topics:

  • Biomarkers for early prognosis and clinical management
  • Early imaging and detection system
  • Genetic and epigenetic predisposition to cancer
  • Environmental and work risk factors
  • Infection and inflammation
  • Immune system and vaccines
  • Nutrition and metabolic unbalance
  • Hormonal influences and chemoprevention
  • Bioinformatics
  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health Economics
  • Technology Transfer, Management and Business Development

The students will follow an educational program including:

1) Yearly intensive courses and workshops
2) Short- and long-term exchanges among participating universities, with the possibility of joint
mentorship for PhD thesis work
3) E-learning

Courses and workshops will allow doctoral students to improve skills in scientific communication, promoting oral and written presentations of their own research projects and work of others. Students will have exceptional opportunities to work in different research environments and be exposed to a variety of interdisciplinary programs of value for their present and future career development.


Conditions of access to the PhD Program in Cancer Prevention

Students can apply to the program any time throughout the year by either one of the following procedures:

  1. Any PhD student already registered in one of the PhD programs of the participating institutions are eligible to apply;
  2. Any outside student can apply directly to the program, identifying one or two host laboratories where they would like to perform their thesis work, contacting directly the PIs and arranging for personal interviews and the possibility of joining their laboratories for an initial interim period.


Admission / Selection Procedure

All applications will be reviewed by an appropriate committee composed of various PhD program faculty members. Importantly, selected students will be invited to participate in a formal oral selection procedure that will take place once a year, in concomitance with the yearly ICPI meeting event.


Credits and Thesis Requirements, Degree and Diploma certificate

  • All PhD students must satisfy the requirements of their local university in order to obtain their PhD degree. This may mean that the student has to collect additional credits for activities that are not recognized by this doctoral program. In addition, all matters relating to evaluation of the PhD student, either by an intermediate exam/evaluation and final PhD thesis preparation and defense are administered by the local university where the PhD student is registered for their PhD degree.
  • The PhD degree is awarded by the university where the PhD student is registered.
  • The PhD Program in Cancer Prevention awards PhD students with a diploma certificate that they have successfully completed the inter-disciplinary curriculum of studies, which will be specifically tailored to each student’s individual performance and interests. Such certificate, together with supporting letters by faculty members closely acquainted with the students’ work will serve as unique assets for subsequent career goals.



The doctoral program will help students to apply and obtain short- and long-term scholarships from various foundations, including the International Cancer Prevention Institute, and government sources.



Students are invited to apply throughout the year, sending a description of research achievements and interests, a complete CV and an advisor’s letter of support to the Ph.D. Program coordinator.