Molecular Biology PhD
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PhD programmes are based on individual research projects that last 3 or 4 years, working with a specific academic supervisor (principle investigators). Applicants are specifically matched with a principle investigator based on their research interests and background.
Molecular biology is fundamental to almost all research that studies microbial, animal and plant systems. Many research groups in the Faculty of Life Sciences are concerned with clinically related subjects including cancer, embryology, development, movement disorders, arthritis, bacterial pathogenesis, tissue injury and its repair. The unifying theme examines how genes are expressed and how they interact with other molecules to exert a biological effect. Fundamental studies of the mechanisms which control gene expression involve investigation of transcriptional and post-transcriptional events. Likewise, the study of cellular processes formulates an understanding of the roles of genes in effecting cellular mechanisms and organisation in living systems. In vitro and in vivo investigations exploit state-of-the-art technologies to visualise the activity of genes and gene products in real time. Model organisms such as C. elegans, mice, Drosophila and Arabidopsis are also used to understand the biological function of individual genes. Gene discovery is closely linked with our strengths in Bioinformatics. Examples of the breadth and diversity of molecular biology within the Faculty include:
- Transcription Factors & Signal Transduction
- RNA Processing
- Apoptosis & Cell Fate
- Molecular Basis of Inherited Diseases
- Cell & Tissue Morphogenesis
- Cytoplasmic Inheritance
- Transgenic Technologies
- Biological Clocks
Coursework and assessment
All research degree programmes are based on supportive supervision in an outstanding research environment. As well as a supervisor each PhD student also has an advisor who is available to oversee the progression of the student and provide additional support during their research degree.
The Faculty of Life Sciences is proud to have one of the largest and most innovative training and development programmes for postgraduate students in Europe, which has undergone continual development over the past 10-15 years. The Graduate Training Programme (GTP) is a series of compulsory and optional workshops, seminars, and skills training modules that are designed to complement a student's research laboratory training. Every student benefits not only from the outstanding academic environment, but also from the opportunity to acquire a broad and individualised range of personal and transferable skills that are of great value in future careers. For more information about the Graduate Training Programme please see the skills development page on the Faculty of Life Sciences website.
Each year the postgraduate community is joined by all members of the Faculty of Life Sciences to formally celebrate their substantial research achievements at the Faculty Research Symposium. During this important day in the Faculty calendar, a selection of postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers present their work, through talks and posters, to their peers, academic and support staff and invited guests. This event provides all of our postgraduates with an important opportunity to showcase their research.
Scholarships and bursaries
Each year the Faculty of Life Sciences has a number of studentships on offer to eligible UK/EU applicants. These studentships are funded by awards from UK research councils (i.e. BBSRC, EPSRC, MRC, NERC, ESRC, AHRC). Studentships are linked to specific PhD projects and are available for applicants to work in the laboratories of named principal investigators. Each year the list of funded PhD projects varies. In addition, throughout the year other studentships may be available through charities, internal funds and some industry-sponsored awards.
The Faculty endeavors to assisting academically excellent international students who wish to undertake a research degree within biological or life science. The Faculty has a number of different scholarship options available to international students.
Applicants are advised to check the Faculty postgraduate web pages for lists of current funding opportunities and eligibility criteria.
The Faculty of Life Sciences at The University of Manchester comprises 250 independent research groups, and is one of the largest and best biology research groupings in Europe. The Faculty's research encompasses the entire spread of life sciences from the molecule to cell to organism to population.
The Faculty occupies a series of superb new buildings, each of which incorporates an enviable collection of equipment core facilities. These include analytical research facilities, bioimaging facility, bioinformatics facility, biomolecular analysis and mass spectrometry facilities, microarray facility, botanical experimental grounds, electron microscopy facility, fermentation facility, flow cytometry facility, histology facility, mammalian transgenic technologies facility, nuclear magnetic resonance facility, and x-ray crystallography facility.
Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Support Office. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org