UCL Birkbeck MRC DTP

Experimental and Translational Medicine

Experimental and Translational Medicine focuses on research programmes designed to investigate specific medical challenges in multiple fields of medicine.

The common feature of the theme is the dissection of pathophysiological mechanisms in specific disorders at the molecular to whole organ level with a view to developing new diagnostic & therapeutic approaches. Therefore the research in ETM is more applied with a much closer proximity to clinical material or patient data. The supervisors in this theme are predominantly clinical academics who have a direct experience of the conditions their laboratories are investigating with a focus on impacting patient outcomes.

In this theme PhD students will have the opportunity to develop a number of skills in 3 rotational projects of their first year before settling on a PhD project and named supervisor. These skills include a range of techniques in molecular biology, cell culture, animal models, laboratory & diagnostic imaging and epidemiological data analysis depending upon the requirements of the student. Projects are recommended to be chosen to enable development of new complimentary skills that would inform future research plans.

UCL is linked directly to University College Hospital, Great Ormond Street & Queens Square which received £110M in funding during the last round of Biomedical Research Centre awards, as well as the Barts Heart Centre providing huge opportunities for biomedical research and innovation.

A range of fields is on offer at UCL including experimental models of human disease in cardiovascular, immunological, oncology, neurological and specific multisystem disorders which may be inherited or acquired e.g. sepsis.

Students are expected to write a dissertation at the end of each term and present this at a combined meeting of their peers and supervisors. Additional training is offered according the students’ requirements including statistical and laboratory technique courses. UCL has unique access to world class scientists in many cross cutting areas of biomedicine and engineering. The epidemiological groups have access to national cohorts and genomic data with many opportunities to exploit these rich datasets.  Therefore, there is huge scope to develop an applied PhD in any aspect of Biomedicine through this theme.

The Theme Directors are Professor Claudia Mauri and Professor Reza Motallebzadeh. Their details can be found on the People page of this website.

Potential Supervisors

The UCL Birkbeck MRC DTP sends out a call for projects after we recruit our students and the full list of projects for the 2024/25 academic year will be available in the summer of 2024.

The list of projects in the Experimental and Translational Medicine theme for the 2023/24 academic year is available. Please note that this theme was formerly known as Experimental and Personalised Medicine. This list is indicative only.