Dr Farhat Latif Khanim PhD

Dr Farhat Latif Khanim

School of Biomedical Sciences
Director of Research

Contact details

University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Farhat Khanim is a translational cancer biologist using drug repurposing to identify novel, low toxicity and affordable therapies for rare diseases and diseases of unmet need. Her major research areas are haematological cancers of the elderly, urological cancers and paediatric cancer in low-middle income countries (LMICs) in Africa. Farhat’s research encompasses the full spectrum of translational research from in vitro drug screening, preclinical mechanism of action studies using a range of molecular, cellular and biochemical approaches, through to clinical trials in the UK and Africa. Farhat is also Director for Research for the School of Biomedical Sciences. As a full-time academic, Farhat teaches and supervises undergraduate and postgraduate students including clinical and non-clinical Masters and PhD students.

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  • PhD in Cancer Sciences 1997
  • BSc Hons Biological Sciences 1992


Farhat is involved in teaching at multiple levels including:

Postgraduate supervision

The main aim of Farhat Khanim’s research is the identification and delivery of effective, non-toxic therapies for blood cancers to the clinic. To achieve this goal, the group studies the basic biology of haematological malignancies, performs drug redeployment screening and drug mechanism of action studies. Mechanistic studies include analysis of tumour metabolism in response to drugs and tumour niche interactions.

Applicants who are interested in postgraduate projects with Dr Khanim should contact her directly with their CV and areas of particular interest.

Other activities

Farhat is a keen supporter and contributor to national fundraising and research events for Blood Cancer UK, a major funder of her work. This includes hosting research visits, talking at award ceremonies and Impact days.

The London International Youth Science Festival (LIYSF), organised by Imperial College, attracts the best students from STEM subjects from all over the world. Farhat is a regular contributor to the LIYSF, delivering invited lectures and hosting workshops for international students at the university since 2016. She also contributes to the Big Bang Science Festival, a national event designed to promote STEM subjects in school children, as an invited judge and assessor.

More of Dr Khanim's other activities:



Recent publications


Sheard, JJ, Southam, AD, MacKay, HL, Ellington, MA, Snow, MD, Khanim, FL, Bunce, CM & Johnson, WE 2021, 'Combined bezafibrate, medroxyprogesterone acetate and valproic acid treatment inhibits osteosarcoma cell growth without adversely affecting normal mesenchymal stem cells', Bioscience Reports, vol. 41, no. 1, BSR20202505. https://doi.org/10.1042/BSR20202505

Lima, MA, Skidmore, M, Khanim, F & Richardson, A 2021, 'Development of a nano-luciferase based assay to measure the binding of SARS-CoV-2 spike receptor binding domain to ACE-2', Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, vol. 534, pp. 485-490. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbrc.2020.11.055

Eraslan, Z, Papatzikas, G, Cazier, J-B, Khanim, FL & Günther, UL 2021, 'Targeting asparagine and serine metabolism in germinal centre-derived B cells non-Hodgkin lymphomas (B-NHL)', Cells, vol. 10, no. 10, 2589. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells10102589

Gleneadie, HJ, Baker, AH, Batis, N, Bryant, J, Jiang, Y, Clokie, SJH, Mehanna, H, Garcia, P, Gendoo, DMA, Roberts, S, Burley, M, Molinolo, AA, Gutkind, JS, Scheven, BA, Cooper, PR, Parish, JL, Khanim, FL & Wiench, M 2021, 'The anti-tumour activity of DNA methylation inhibitor 5-aza-2′-deoxycytidine is enhanced by the common analgesic paracetamol through induction of oxidative stress', Cancer Letters, vol. 501, pp. 172-186. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.canlet.2020.12.029

Davies, SP, Mycroft-West, CJ, Pagani, I, Hill, HJ, Chen, Y-H, Karlsson, R, Bagdonaite, I, Guimond, SE, Stamataki, Z, De Lima, MA, Turnbull, JE, Yang, Z, Vicenzi, E, Skidmore, MA, Khanim, FL & Richardson, A 2021, 'The hyperlipidaemic drug fenofibrate significantly reduces infection by SARS-CoV-2 in cell culture models', Frontiers in Pharmacology, vol. 12, 660490. https://doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2021.660490

Jiang, Y, Southam, AD, Trova, S, Beke, F, Alhazmi, B, Francis, T, Radotra, A, Di Maio, A, Drayson, MT, Bunce, CM & Khanim, FL 2021, 'Valproic acid disables the Nrf2 anti-oxidant response in acute myeloid leukaemia cells enhancing reactive oxygen species-mediated killing', British Journal of Cancer, vol. 126, no. 2, pp. 275-286. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41416-021-01570-z

Bryant, J, Batis, N, Franke, AC, Clancey, G, Hartley, M, Ryan, G, Brooks, J, Southam, AD, Barnes, N, Parish, J, Roberts, S, Khanim, F, Spruce, R & Mehanna, H 2019, 'Repurposed quinacrine synergizes with cisplatin, reducing the effective dose required for treatment of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma', OncoTarget, vol. 10, no. 50, pp. 5229-5244. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.27156

Abdullah, MI, Abed, MN, Khanim, F & Richardson, A 2019, 'Screening a library of approved drugs reveals that prednisolone synergizes with pitavastatin to induce ovarian cancer cell death', Scientific Reports, vol. 9, no. 1, 9632. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-46102-1

Drayson, M, Murray, J, Pratt, G, Jacob, A, Clark, F, Blundred, R, Fox, S, Bishop, R, Wheatley, K, Khanim, F & Bunce, C 2019, 'Single arm phase II trial assessing the safety, compliance with and activity of bezafibrate and medroxyProgesterone acetate (BaP) therapy against myeloid and lymphoid cancers', Contemporary Clinical Trials Communications, vol. 14, 100361. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.conctc.2019.100361

Barini, E, Miccoli, A, Tinarelli, F, Mulholland, K, Kadri, H, Khanim, F, Stojanovski, L, Read, KD, Burness, K, Blow, JJ, Mehellou, Y & Muqit, MMK 2018, 'The Anthelmintic Drug Niclosamide and Its Analogues Activate the Parkinson's Disease Associated Protein Kinase PINK1', ChemBioChem, vol. 19, no. 5, pp. 425-429. https://doi.org/10.1002/cbic.201700500

Denbigh, JL, Perez-Guaita, D, Vernooij, RR, Tobin, MJ, Bambery, KR, Xu, Y, Southam, AD, Khanim, FL, Drayson, MT, Lockyer, NP, Goodacre, R & Wood, BR 2017, 'Probing the action of a novel anti-leukaemic drug therapy at the single cell level using modern vibrational spectroscopy techniques', Scientific Reports, vol. 7, 2649. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-02069-5

Calamita, P, Miluzio, A, Russo, A, Pesce, E, Ricciardi, S, Khanim, F, Cheroni, C, Alfieri, R, Mancino, M, Gorrini, C, Rossetti, G, Peluso, I, Pagani, M, Medina, DL, Rommens, J & Biffo, S 2017, 'SBDS-Deficient Cells Have an Altered Homeostatic Equilibrium due to Translational Inefficiency Which Explains their Reduced Fitness and Provides a Logical Framework for Intervention', PLoS Genetics, vol. 13, no. 1, e1006552. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pgen.1006552


Bryan, RT, Arnold, R, Khanim, FL, Shepherd, DE, Patel, P & Ward, DG 2021, 'Establishing the Bladder Cancer Research Centre at the University of Birmingham', Nature Reviews Urology, vol. 18, no. 6, pp. 318-320. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41585-021-00448-2

Review article

Ward, K, Kitchen, M, Mathias, S-J, Khanim, F & Bryan, R 2022, 'Novel intravesical therapeutics in the treatment of non-muscle invasive bladder cancer: horizon scanning', Frontiers in Surgery, vol. 9, 912438. https://doi.org/10.3389/fsurg.2022.912438

Bunce, CM & Khanim, FL 2018, 'The 'known-knowns', and 'known-unknowns' of extracellular Nm23-H1/NDPK proteins', Laboratory investigation. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41374-017-0012-5

View all publications in research portal

Languages and other information

English, Urdu, some Punjabi.

Culture and collections

Schools, institutes and departments

Services and facilities