Our People

Debottam Sinha

Dr | Research Officer (Early Career Post-doctoral Research)

Tumour Immunology

61 7 3362 3056



Dr. Debottam Sinha is an early career postdoctoral researcher, self-motivated young scientist with a research focus on cell and cancer biology, genomic instability, tumour immunology, and cellular therapies. He pursued his doctoral studies under the guidance of Professor Kum Kum Khanna in QIMR Berghofer and conferred in April 2018, from Griffith University. Prior to his PhD, he acquired a Master of Science degree in Biotechnology, awarded in August 2013 from VIT University, India. He is currently pursuing his first postdoctoral research experience under the supervision of Prof Rajiv Khanna. He is an active committee member of the Animal Scientific Sub-committee of the QIMR Berghofer Animal Ethics Committee and the Postdoctoral Association of QIMR. He is presently appointed as an honorary research fellow in the School of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Queensland. He holds membership with a number of reputed international cancer societies, namely the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) and the European Association of Cancer Research (EACR) and is currently appointed as one of the “EACR Young Ambassador” for promoting cancer research, worldwide.

Throughout his PhD studies, his research was focused on the development of novel combinatorial therapeutic strategies against aggressive cancers such as the triple-negative breast cancer. He has a strong interest in understanding the relationship between cancer signalling pathways and tumour microenvironment in aggressive malignancies. He is currently leading a study that is focussed in  characterizing and improving the efficacy of “off-the-shelf” allogeneic T cell therapies in vivo.






  • Immuno-oncology: Developing novel therapies by strategic targeted therapeutics in combination with immunotherapy.
  • Cancer cell Signalling: Understanding the signalling network regulating tumour growth
  • Tumour microenvironment: Influence of cancer signalling pathways regulating tumour immune infiltration.
  • Genomic instability and tumour heterogeneity: Characterising the molecular players regulating tumour progression and tumour microenvironment.
  • Leading the scientific project on the application of “third party” EBV-specific cytotoxic T cell-based therapeutic strategy on preclinical mouse model.
  • Developing novel therapeutic strategies involving synergistic efficacy of EBV-specific cytotoxic T cell-based therapy in combination with molecular therapeutics in targeting EBV-associated cancers.
  • Understanding the complexity of the cancer-intrinsic pathways regulating the tumour microenvironment.
  • Functional phenotyping of CEP55 in embryonic development in mice.
  • Leading the specific project on the functional characterization and identifying novel mechanisms by which Cep55 promotes genomic instability and nourish aneuploidy using mouse model.
  • Characterizing the tumour incidence and spectrum of Cep55 overexpression in tumours with loss of the tumour suppressor Tp53.
  • Developing novel therapies for primary and metastatic triple-negative breast cancers (TNBCs).
  • Understanding the mechanism for drug resistance and developing novel strategies to overcome chemo-resistance in aggressive cancers such as TNBCs.


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2014- Present: Science Ambassador at QIMR Berghofer, for promoting science in Brisbane, Australia.

2016- 2017: Student Member at Australian Society of Medical Research (ASMR), Brisbane, Australia.

2016- 2018: Student Member and Young Ambassador at EACR.

2016- Present: Associate Member (Early career) at AACR.

2017- Present: Member (Early career) at American Society of Clinical Oncology

2018- Present:  Member of Royal Society of Biology, UK.

2018- 2020: Associate Member at Australian Society of Medical Research (ASMR), Australia.

2020-Present: Member of Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer, USA.

2020-Present: Member of International Society for Cellular Therapy, Canada.


2008 – 2009: Merit Scholarship of Academic, VIT University, India.

2008 – 2013: Annual Scholarship from Staff Welfare Scheme of State Bank of Hyderabad, India.

2012: Summer training research award from IICB for pursuing summer internship.            

2014 – 2017: International Postgraduate Research Scholarship, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia.

2014 – 2017: Postgraduate Research Scholarship, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia.

2015 – 2016: PhD TOP UP Research Scholarship, QIMR Berghofer, Brisbane, Australia.

2016: Student Travel Award for presenting at the 37th Lorne Genome Conference, Australia.

2016: Young Investigator Award for presenting at the 14th International Workshop on Radiation Damage to DNA, Melbourne, Australia.

2017: International Travel award Higher Degree Committee (HDC), QIMR Berghofer for presenting at American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) annual conference, Washington DC, USA, 2017.

2017: Travel award from Griffith University for presenting at AACR annual conference Washington DC, USA, 2017.

2017: Travel Award from The European Association for Cancer Research(EACR), for presenting at European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress, Madrid, Spain 2017.

2017: PhD Thesis Write Up scholarship from Griffith University.

2018: Travel Award from EACR for presenting at EACR Biannual Congress, Amsterdam, Netherlands 2018.

2019: Travel Award from EACR for presenting at ESMO Congress, Barcelona, Spain 2019.

2019: Travel Award from ESMO for presenting at ESMO Congress, Barcelona, Spain 2019.


2014-2018: PhD in Cancer Biology, at QIMR (Queensland Institute of Medical Research) Berghofer Medical Research Institute, awarded by Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia. Dissertation Tittle: “Deciphering the role of CEP55 as a potent oncogene and a potential therapeutic target against triple negative breast cancer.” (Conferral date: 26th April, 2018)

2008-2013: Master of Science (Integrated 5 years) in Biotechnology with first class honours (CGPA 8.89/10) from VIT University (Vellore Institute of Technology), India.