We offer a fully funded PhD opportunity in the MRC Clinical Trials Unit at UCL commencing in October 2020. The PhD will be in the area of clinical trials methodology, particularly to extend the multi-arm, multi-stage (MAMS)randomised clinical trial designs – see below. The supervisors are Dr Babak Oskooei (UCL), Professor Max Parmar (UCL).


This 3 year studentship covers tuition fees, research support costs, and a stipend and is open to UK and EU candidates – see below link.


To apply please send your cover letter and CV to Babak Oskooei (b.choodari-oskooei@ucl.ac.uk). Further details on this PhD opportunity can be found in the following link: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/clinical-trials-and-methodology/education/phd/current-studentships



Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) are the gold-standard for testing whether anew treatment is better than the current standard of care. However, the traditional designs take a long time and are often expensive, increasingly so in both cases.


To overcome these issues, the multi-arm, multi-stage (MAMS)trial design has been proposed, which tests several different treatments in parallel and ceases recruitment early to those treatments which appear futile using a staged approach. The advantages over traditional designs are as follows: 1) it saves time compared to testing all the treatments sequentially in a series of two-arm trials; 2) It increases the probability of identifying a better treatment; 3) It allows testing of more treatments than would ever be performed in two-arm trials; 4) It is considerably cheaper and more efficient than comparable two-arm trials.


The MAMS approach is one of the few adaptive designs being deployed in a number of trials and across a range of diseases, including ROSSINI-II, RAMPART, STAMPEDE, CompARE, TRUNCATE-TB, prompting changes to treatment guidelines in patients with prostate cancer in the case of STAMPEDE trial. The main aim of this PhD project would be to extend the design, to explore its statistical properties, and to develop some practical guidance on implementation of the methods for practitioners.



Latest article (Open-access):

Assessing the impact of efficacy stopping rules on the error rates under the multi-arm multi-stage framework



PhD studentship available: