MSc Precision Medicine

Year of entry: 2021

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Overview

Degree awarded
Master of Science
Duration
MSc 12 months FT, PGCert 4 months FT
Entry requirements

We require an honours degree (minimum Upper Second) or overseas equivalent in:

  • biomedical sciences
  • medical sciences
  • biological sciences
  • chemical sciences
  • biochemical sciences
  • pharmacological sciences
  • medicine
  • dentistry
  • pharmacy
  • veterinary medicine
  • computational biology

This must be from a recognised university.

We will also consider candidates with Upper Second degrees in a relevant analytical, physical or computing science area. Evidence of previous advanced study, research or professional experience may be accepted as qualification for entry for applicants with a Lower Second or equivalent.

We do not require previous research experience or a developed research proposal from applicants.

This course is also available for intercalating medical students, both from The University of Manchester and other UK universities. Intercalating students must have satisfactorily completed Years 1 to 3 of the MBChB. For St Andrews students, this includes the 3-year course and the following year in Manchester (Year 3 of the Manchester course).

Full entry requirements

Number of places/applicants
20 places.
How to apply

Please apply via our online application form . See the application and selection section for details of the supporting documents we require.

We recommend that you apply as early as possible. We reserve the right to close applications if the course is full.

Course options

Full-time Part-time Full-time distance learning Part-time distance learning
MSc Y N N N

Course overview

John Curtin

"Precision Medicine is a rapidly changing and exciting area of science that is significantly impacting on healthcare.

"Delivered by world-leading clinical and scientific experts this multidisciplinary programme is ideally suited for biomedical science and intercalating students to pursue a career in industry, academia or as a clinical academic."

John Curtin / Lecturer in Precision Medicine
  • Learn the principles of precision and stratified medicine and the clinical impact of individual molecular and lifestyle variability.
  • Learn the fundamentals of omics technologies including genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics.
  • Study at a university ranked 8th in the UK and among the top 35 in the world for Medicine (QS World University Rankings 2020).
  • Undertake an extended 35-week research project within the world-leading research groups in the University, the Manchester Cancer Research Centre or a teaching hospital in Greater Manchester.
  • Intercalating medical students can apply for this MSc.

Open days

For details of the next University Postgraduate open day, visit open days and visits

Fees

For entry in the academic year beginning September 2021, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • MSc (full-time)
    UK students (per annum): £12,000
    International, including EU, students (per annum): £26,000

Further information for EU students can be found on our dedicated EU page.

The fees quoted above will be fully inclusive for the course tuition, administration and computational costs during your studies.

All fees for entry will be subject to yearly review and incremental rises per annum are also likely over the duration of courses lasting more than a year for UK/EU students (fees are typically fixed for International students, for the course duration at the year of entry). For general fees information please visit: postgraduate fees . Always contact the department if you are unsure which fee applies to your qualification award and method of attendance.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).

Scholarships/sponsorships

For the latest scholarship and bursary information please visit the fees and funding page.

Contact details

School/Faculty
Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health
Contact name
Postgraduate Admissions Team
Telephone
+44 (0)161 306 5439
Email
Website
https://www.bmh.manchester.ac.uk/medicine/
School/Faculty
Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health

Courses in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.

Entry requirements

Academic entry qualification overview

We require an honours degree (minimum Upper Second) or overseas equivalent in:

  • biomedical sciences
  • medical sciences
  • biological sciences
  • chemical sciences
  • biochemical sciences
  • pharmacological sciences
  • medicine
  • dentistry
  • pharmacy
  • veterinary medicine
  • computational biology

This must be from a recognised university.

We will also consider candidates with Upper Second degrees in a relevant analytical, physical or computing science area. Evidence of previous advanced study, research or professional experience may be accepted as qualification for entry for applicants with a Lower Second or equivalent.

We do not require previous research experience or a developed research proposal from applicants.

This course is also available for intercalating medical students, both from The University of Manchester and other UK universities. Intercalating students must have satisfactorily completed Years 1 to 3 of the MBChB. For St Andrews students, this includes the 3-year course and the following year in Manchester (Year 3 of the Manchester course).

English language

International students must demonstrate English proficiency through a secure and approved testing system.

We ask for English language proof if you are from non-majority English speaking countries (a list of majority English speaking countries, as defined by the UK Home Office, can be found on the GOV.UK website ).

Specifically, we require a minimum of:

  • IELTS : 6.5 overall (with 6.0 or above in each component)
  • TOEFL: 90 (with 20 or above in each component)

See further information about requirements for your country .

We may also accept evidence of a confirmed place on a University Pre-sessional English language course, if your current IELTS scores are:

  • Minimum 6.0 overall with 5.5 in each component plus enrolment and attendance on the 6-week Pre-sessional course (PS6).
  • Minimum 5.5 overall (with 5.5 in in each component) plus enrolment and attendance on the 10-week Pre-sessional course (PS10).

Please note, we must approve this before you apply for the English course.

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Please apply via our online application form . See the application and selection section for details of the supporting documents we require.

We recommend that you apply as early as possible. We reserve the right to close applications if the course is full.

Advice to applicants

Your application form must have the following documents.

  • Two academic references on letter headed paper or sent from work emails. Professional references can be provided in instances where you have been out of university for more than 3 years. We do not contact referees directly.
  • Official degree certificates (with translations if not in English) if you have already graduated.
  • Official university transcripts (with translations if not in English).
  • A personal statement. This should be a page long and cover:
  • why you want to undertake this course of study;
  • any relevant past experience and what you think you can bring to the course;
  • how this course fits into your future career plans and any other relevant information.
  • Full CV including voluntary experience.
  • A scanned copy of your passport if you require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK.
  • If English is not your first language, we require proof of your English language ability. If you have already taken an English language qualification, please include your certificate with your application. We may be willing to consider your application without this document, but if we choose to make you an offer, the conditions will include IELTS (or equivalent qualification).

Supporting documents can be uploaded with the online application form or, if this is not possible, sent directly to pgtaught.biosciences@manchester.ac.uk . We are unable to consider your application if you have not provided all of the necessary documents listed above.

You must include your University ID number on any correspondence and do not send any documents before you have submitted your application.

How your application is considered

When we receive all required supporting documentation, your application will be reviewed by the relevant Course Director. Applicants are considered on an academic and relevant professional experience basis, based on all information provided.

Skills, knowledge, abilities, interests

If you have followed a non-standard educational route and have been, for example, educated at home, your application will be considered against the standard entry criteria of the course to which you applied. You will be required to demonstrate that you meet the academic entry requirements as specified for the course. We will also require a reference which should be written by somebody who knows you well enough, in an official capacity, to write about you and your suitability for higher education. Please refer to UCAS for further information: UCAS reference guidelines .

Interview requirements

All applicants are interviewed prior to being offered a place on the course. This involves a short presentation followed by questions.

Overseas (non-UK) applicants

Self-funded international applicants for this course will be required to pay a deposit of £1,000 towards their tuition fees before a confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) is issued. This deposit will only be refunded if immigration permission is refused. We will notify you about how and when to make this payment.

Please upload a copy of your current valid passport with your application showing the photograph page with your application. For CAS purposes, this must show your full name, date of birth, nationality, passport number and the date the passport is valid until, which must be later than the date of your planned arrival in the UK, and the start date of your course.

You cannot use your CAS to apply for a visa more than three months before the start date of your course.

Your CAS number is only valid for one Tier 4 application.

Deferrals

Deferrals are considered on an individual basis. Successful applicants may defer entry to the course for up to one year.

Re-applications

If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful you may apply again.

Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry. In your new application you should demonstrate how your application has improved. We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course.

Course details

Course description

Our Master of Science (MSc) in Precision Medicine will provide training in the principles of precision and stratified medicine and the clinical impact of individual molecular and lifestyle variability. This course replaces the MRes in Translational Medicine.

Our understanding of the molecular basis of disease, drug mechanisms and precision medicine has improved dramatically in recent years, yet there is a distinct shortage of individuals able to translate this knowledge into effective clinical benefit. The aim is to train the next generation of scientists able to fast-track biological and scientific insights into advanced therapies and diagnostic tools.

The MSc course consists of four taught units covering omics principles including genetics, genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics, which together make up the PGCert, plus an extended 35-week project that can be undertaken at the University, the Manchester Cancer Research Centre or a teaching hospital in Greater Manchester. Our teaching integrates different omic technologies to enable you to undertake precision medicine research.

You can choose from a range of projects covering areas such as the use of gene expression profiling, proteomics, metabolomics, stem cell research, tissue culture or pharmacogenetics in the biology of diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, infectious diseases, stroke or diabetes.

Completing our course will open up a route into PhD research. You may also pursue a career in academia or the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industries, or as a clinical academic.

Aims

We aim to train you in the principles of precision and stratified medicine and the clinical impact of individual molecular and lifestyle variability. You will learn the fundamentals of omics technologies including genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics.

Special features

Janine Lamb

"Our students undertake ambitious research.

"Projects have explored cancer, cardiovascular disease, inflammation or diabetes, using methods including stem cell research, proteomics, metabolomics, or pharmacogenetics."

Janine Lamb / Course Director

Extensive research experience

The 35-week research project for the MSc award offers the chance to conduct ambitious projects in world-leading research groups in areas such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, inflammation, mental health, infectious diseases, stroke or diabetes, using methods such as stem cell research, proteomics, metabolomics, tissue culture or pharmacogenetics.

Omics technologies in precision medicine

You will learn about multidisciplinary molecular profiling technologies including genetics, genomics, proteomics and metabolomics and their application to the growing area of precision and stratified medicine.

Teaching and learning

The taught units are delivered using a variety of face-to-face, workshop and e-learning approaches. There is also an extended 35-week research project for the MSc award. Examples of past research projects include:

  • Statins in translational cerebral ischemia: systematic review and meta-analysis of pre-clinical studies;
  • Parallel gene expression profiling and histological analysis of tumour tissue microarrays;
  • Development of a New Drug For Alzheimer's Disease by Drug Repositioning;
  • Identification of genetic variants predisposing to autoimmune idiopathic inflammatory myopathies;
  • Effects of differentiating agents on breast cancer stem cells and their sensitivity to DNA-damaging therapies;
  • Molecular characterisation of prostate cancer;
  • Inhibitors of IAPP Aggregation and Toxicity;
  • New Therapies for Type II Diabetes;
  • Identifying novel monotherapy and combination therapies for the treatment of Glioma;
  • Translation of in vitro to in vivo: investigating the utility of in vitro drug transporter assays to predict inductive effects in the clinic;
  • In vivo mechanistic analysis of cancer drug combination therapies;
  • Using silk as a biomaterial for nerve regeneration;
  • The role of the local tissue environment in immune activation following myocardial damage;
  • Identifying genes that drive Breast Cancer to Bone Metastasis;
  • High throughput genetic testing in rare disease: applications of personalised medicine;
  • Drug resistance and heterogeneity in CML following treatment with imatinib and following perturbation caused by nanoparticle delivery of miRNAs;
  • Investigation of a panel of drugs to inhibit the pro-tumourgenic actions of macrophages in breast cancer;
  • 3D anatomical reconstruction and molecular mapping of the atrioventricular ring tissues in human embryonic heart and adult rat heart;
  • Identification of the genetic basis of disorders associated with the presence of intracranial calcification;
  • Species variability in metabolism as a translational factor influencing susceptibility to adverse drug reactions in man.

Find out more about postgraduate teaching and learning at The University of Manchester.

Coursework and assessment

We use a range of assessment methods, including oral and poster presentations, workshops, a literature review, written reports and a journal article dissertation.

Course unit details

The MSc course consists of four taught units - which together make up the PGCert - plus an extended 35-week project.The four taught units run throughout Semester 1, and are taught using a variety of face-to-face, workshop and e-learning approaches. Further details can be found by clicking on the units in the table below.

The research project for the MSc award runs throughout Semester 2 and has two main elements, Research Project 1 (10 weeks) and Research Project 2 (25 weeks). Further details can be found by clicking on the units in the table below.

Clinical Masterclass course unit The Clinical Masterclass course unit is an optional non-credit bearing unit that may be available for intercalated medical students subject to availability. The unit consists of a series of seminars, workshops and e-learning.

This optional unit contributes to personal and professional development in the experience, knowledge and skills training required for effective clinical practice and success, with a strong emphasis on clinical academic research.

Course unit list

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Research Project 1 BIOL66121 30 Mandatory
Research Project 2 BIOL66132 90 Mandatory
Genetics, Genetic Epidemiology, Transcriptomics and Functional Genomics BIOL72021 15 Mandatory
Proteomics and Metabolomics BIOL72031 15 Mandatory
Laboratory Skills Unit MEDN66111 15 Mandatory
Research Methods MEDN69910 15 Mandatory

Course collaborators

Our course links clinicians with technology developers and is delivered by discovery scientists and clinical academics from the Faculties of Biology, Medicine and Health, and Science and Engineering.

A partnership between the University and local NHS Trusts aims to accelerate advances in healthcare through clinical integration.

Our course also has partnerships with interdisciplinary organisations, for example, Manchester Cancer Research Centre, Stoller Biomarker Discovery Centre, and Manchester Collaborative Centre for Inflammation Research, a collaboration between UK pharmaceutical companies and the University.

What our students say

Ilinca Neacsu

After finishing my undergraduate studies, I wanted to develop my research skills and gain more knowledge in omic technologies.

The 6 month laboratory project helped me achieve my aims and enhance my skills. The seminars delivered by lecturers who worked in industry also helped me understand difficult topics. It was an amazing opportunity to discover the latest technologies and was great preparation for a PhD and a career in the industry.

Ilinca Neacsu / Alumni from course formally called Translational Medicine

The lectures and seminars that we had with lecturers from the pharmaceutical industry was a great chance to understand how research is performed outside of the University and what opportunities exist for researchers in industry. Moreover, the emphasis given on proper preparation and organisation of projects, critically reviewing published bibliographies, and effectively communicating research work through verbal and written channels will develop useful skills for the future. Elpida Tsonou

Really interesting and stimulating course which provides a detailed overview and first-hand experience of how systems medicine can be used to advance human healthcare. Jamie Ellingford

The course was amazing. It helped me to become more confident in working in the lab individually. I learnt so many valuable skills and made some good friends along the way. Nadia Iqbal

The course provided me with knowledge of novel techniques that I can now incorporate into my research. I would recommend the course to anybody. William Critchley

I feel the course has given me excellent preparation for my PhD and would greatly recommend it to anyone looking for a research career. Shaun Wood

Please note the opinions above were provided for the precursor to this course, MRes Translational Medicine.

Facilities

Our MSc students are based within state-of-the-art academic research facilities, including the Manchester Institute for Biotechnology (MIB) and Michael Smith, Stopford and AV Hill Buildings.

The MIB is equipped with facilities for training in biotechnologies for medical healthcare.

Research projects are carried out within the University, the Manchester Cancer Research Centre or one of the Greater Manchester teaching hospitals.

You will be able to access a range of facilities throughout the University.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk

Careers

Career opportunities

More than 50% of our graduates progress into PhD research at Manchester or other universities such as Cambridge, Imperial College London, Newcastle, Glasgow, Liverpool and Bristol.

Around 15% pursue a career in the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industry in the UK or abroad.

Approximately 25% are intercalating medics who complete their medical education. An estimated 10% pursue an undergraduate medical degree.

Visit our blog to read about how important the MRes was to graduate Jamie's career development.