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Early Cancer Institute


  • Research Group Leader, Early Cancer Institute, University of Cambridge
  • UKRI Future Leaders Fellow, University of Cambridge
  • Anthony L. Lyster Fellow, Queens’ College, University of Cambridge


Jamie trained as a theoretical physicist at the Cavendish laboratory, University of Cambridge with Eugene Terentjev studying the statistical physics of polymers. He moved to Stanford University in 2012 as a postdoctoral scholar working on the dynamics of clonal evolution with Daniel Fisher, Sasha Levy, Dmitri Petrov and Gavin Sherlock. He joined the CRUK Cambridge Centre Early Detection program in July 2017 and was awarded a UKRI Future leaders fellowship in September 2019 which funds much of the group’s research. His research interests lie in quantitatively understanding somatic evolution in human tissues and using this understanding to detect cancer earlier. He is also the Anthony L. Lyster fellow at Queens’ College, Cambridge. 


The mission of the Blundell lab is to develop a quantitative understanding of somatic evolution in tissues to detect cancer at its earliest stages. Our work aims to understand how mutant clones arise, expand and compete in our tissues as we age. Focusing predominantly on blood, we use novel genetic lineage tracking tools and deep sequencing of longitudinal samples to identify mutant clones which are under strong positive selection. Such clones are implicated in early cancer and thus are candidates for improved cancer detection. More details on research projects can be found at