Board of Directors .

Emma Kinloch is the Consumer Forum Chair for the National Cancer Research Institute ('NCRI') and is active in many areas of patient advocacy both in the UK and internationally.  Emma is one of the ePAG representatives for the EURACAN ERN and has fostered close alliances with many international organisations.

Dr Rob Metcalf MB ChB PhD MRCP is a consultant head and neck cancer medical oncologist and clinician scientist. His clinical and research focus is on salivary gland cancer, seeing patients from across the UK. Most of his patients have adenoid cystic carcinoma. The overall aim of his clinical and research practice is to develop new therapies for these patients.

Kemi Olaiya is the treasurer of Salivary Gland Cancer UK.  Kemi has over 20 years experience in financial services and charity involvement, bringing a wealth of experience and knowledge to her role. 

To see more about each of the Board members, take a look at the sections below.

Emma Kinloch BAHons (Oxon), MSc

Emma Kinloch founded a London based Head and Neck cancer support group in 2014 and is the National Cancer Research Institute's ('NCRI') Consumer Forum Chair.  She is a member of the Head and Neck EURACAN domain and has sat on the National Cancer Research Institute Head and Neck Clinical Studies Group ('CSG') for 4 years. 

After graduating in Experimental Psychology from Corpus Christi College, Oxford, Emma pursued a successful career in finance, working in both Europe and Asia.  More recently she embarked on a PhD in Occupational Health Psychology, focusing on Head and Neck Cancer and Work, having completed a related Masters’ degree in Occupational Psychology, in 2016 at the University of London.  Emma also holds a MSc in Criminology from the London School of Economics and is a fully qualified PADI Scuba Diving Instructor and enjoys hill walking and wild swimming.

Dr Robert Metcalf MB ChB PhD MRCP

Dr Rob Metcalf MB ChB PhD MRCP

Is a consultant head and neck cancer medical oncologist and clinician scientist. His clinical and research focus is on salivary gland cancer, seeing patients from across the UK. Most of his patients have adenoid cystic carcinoma. The overall aim of his clinical and research practice is to develop new therapies for these patients.

He runs clinical trials and performs translational studies through an established clinical/translational research practice based at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, one of Europe’s largest cancer hospitals, and The University of Manchester.

To inform the development of the next generation of clinical trials, he is developing a laboratory research program within the Cancer Research UK Manchester Institute. The initial laboratory focus is on adenoid cystic carcinoma biology. The ambition is for his laboratory, translational and clinical research to lead to the development of new therapies, and to improve survival for these patients.

His research examines genomic profiles in head and neck tumour samples to identify alterations that can be targeted by drug therapies. The particular focus is on salivary gland cancers due to the significant unmet need. The primary aim is to develop a new biological understanding of how changes at the level of the gene/protein result in tumour growth and metastasis. Through novel insights provided with this approach, he is screening drugs using cell lines and mouse models. Drugs which are found to be effective in the laboratory studies will then be taken forwards to clinical trials in patients with the goal of improving patient survival.

Rob’s research

His initial research focus is on adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC). This is a salivary gland cancer, which metastasises in over 50% of patients leading to a median survival of 3 years, with no effective drug therapies. Due to chromosomal rearrangements, 90% of ACC tumours are driven by overexpression of myeloblastosis (MYB) transcription factor gene family members: a-MYB and c-MYB.

The overall goal is to develop new therapies for ACC by identifying mechanisms through which MYB drives tumour growth and metastasis, and to develop predictive and prognostic biomarkers to optimise patient treatment.

Chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing has identified MYB downstream targets are enriched for genes controlling cell cycle regulation. As the cell cycle is dysregulated through multiple mechanisms in most human tumours and offers avenues for therapeutic targeting, the initial focus is to determine whether and how MYB overexpression hijacks cell cycle control in adenoid cystic carcinoma.

For functional studies to identify critical effector genes downstream of MYB, Dr Metcalf is developing isogenic MYB knock-down/knock-out ACC models using shRNA and CRISPR/Cas9 followed by lentiviral mediated MYB rescue. To validate candidates identified through this approach as therapeutic targets, he is performing in vitro and in vivo drug screening in models of ACC.

As metastasis is a defining feature of ACC, he will use in vivo and ex vivo fluorescence/luminescence imaging studies in isogenic models to identify functional predictors of metastasis. Fundamental discoveries in ACC biology will be translated to patients using tumour/liquid biopsies to identify and validate prognostic and predictive biomarkers.

Through his clinical role as head and neck cancer research lead at The Christie Hospital, he will rapidly translate the findings from this research to develop biomarker led clinical trials for this patient group with a high risk of tumour metastasis. As there are no standard drug therapies, effective drug therapies would have global impact in this population. A further outcome of this research will be the development of a platform to broaden research studies across other rare sub-types of head and neck cancers. In addition, insights into MYB biology in ACC may provide insights into other solid tumours where MYB is frequently overexpressed including sub-groups of patients with breast and colorectal cancers. 

Kemi Olaiya

My name is Kemi Olaiya. I was born in Nigeria but have spent the majority of my life outside of Africa. Growing up a Diplomats’ child, I have lived in the USA and been in the UK since the age of 12; this is home.

I have completed all my secondary and further education in the UK and I have been working in Financial Services for over 20 years across various specialisations and locations. I am currently heading up the Asset Transfer team at Capita.

I have been involved in charitable work since the age of 16. I am generous with my time on the social responsibility side. Throughout my career, I have supplemented my professional life, by being an active member of any charity committee within the organisation.

I have personally taken on various physical challenges in order to raise money for various charities. These include a 500K cycle ride through the Masai Mara regions in Kenya and making a valiant attempt to climb Kilimanjaro. Alongside my participation, I have also been very active in various fund raising events for many charities. I have worked with some well know charities such as Ambitious about Autism, Demelza House and Smartworks/ Suited and Booted.

I have a passion for travel and enjoy meeting new people, seeing new places and experiencing different cultures.

I live in London and the best thing I love about my home town is the diversity.