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Bioinformatics PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

We have 307 Bioinformatics PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

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Biological Sciences

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I am a self funded student


We have 307 Bioinformatics PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

A Bioinformatics PhD would provide you with the opportunity to work on an extended, in-detail project through the analysis of large sets of data. Bioinformatics programmes tend to be mostly ‘dry’ work with limited (if any) time in the laboratory conducting experiments. Since the focus is analysis of data, the choice of projects spans many subjects from analysing bacterial evolution, to modelling the spread of disease.

What’s it like to do a PhD in Bioinformatics?

As a Bioinformatics PhD student, you’ll work with the latest software and become proficient with programming in R, Python and MATLAB. You’ll also gain extensive experience with techniques from statistics and data science, all of which will allow you to analyse data effectively.

Some typical research topics in Bioinformatics include:

  • Genetic mapping
  • Population dynamics
  • Epidemiological modelling (modelling disease spread)
  • Improving diagnosis through the development of an algorithm
  • Using omic technology to study a disease state
  • Modelling and predicting evolution

Most Bioinformatics programmes advertised projects with full funding attached. These projects have a pre-determined aim, but you can alter the project along the way to suit your interests.

Compared to other Biology programmes, there is more opportunity of proposing a project, though this remains uncommon. While the majority are advertised projects, some doctoral training programmes offer bioinformatics projects in a given area and leave you to propose the specifics of the project.

In a normal day you’ll be writing programmes to identify new features in the data, analysing results using statistics and data science methods and discussing your project with your supervisor and colleagues.

At the end of the three or four years you’ll complete a thesis of around 60,000 words, which will contribute to your field and you’ll defend it during your viva exam.

Entry requirements

The entry requirements for most Bioinformatics PhD programmes involve a Masters in a related subject including Maths, Biological Science, Computer Science, or Software Engineering, with at least a Merit or Distinction. If English isn’t your first language, you’ll also need to show that you have the right level of language proficiency.

PhD in Bioinformatics funding options

The Research Council responsible for funding Bioinformatics PhDs in the UK is the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC). They provide fully-funded studentships including a stipend for living costs, a consumables budget for bench fees and a tuition fee waiver. Students don’t apply directly to the BBSRC, you apply for advertised projects with this funding attached.

It’s uncommon for Bioinformatics PhD students to be ‘self-funded’ due to the additional bench fees. However, if you were planning to fund yourself it might be achievable (depending on your project) through the UK government’s PhD loan and part-time work.

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Discovery and mechanism evaluation of synthetic lethality in cancers of mesenchyme

In order to circumvent evolutionary selection and resistance to environmental context and anti-cancer agents, novel approaches that result in synthetic (synergistic) cell lethality (dependencies) that are specific for the cancer cell are most likely to have translational impact. Read more

Homologous recombination at human centromeres – friend or foe?

The centromere is a region of chromatin that serves as a platform for the kinetochore machinery assembly, hence is essential for accurate chromosome segregation during cell division. Read more

Investigating the Mitotoxicity of Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics

Applications are invited for a self-funded, 3 year full-time or 6 year part-time PhD project. The PhD will be based in the School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Science and will be supervised by Dr Robert Baldock. Read more

Genome engineering and centromere diversity

Centromeres are the DNA sequences that are responsible for accurate segregation of eukaryotic chromosomes at cell division. Although centromeres mediate a conserved function they are remarkably diverse in evolution. Read more

Identification and characterisation of bacteriocins from environmental samples active against strains of Clostridium difficile.

Clostridiodes difficile is a cause of neonatal enteritis in livestock such as pigs, cattle and horses. Affected animals develop respiratory problems, abdominal distention and bloody diarrhoea leading to weight loss and in extreme cases mortality. Read more

The evolution of mating systems and parental care: phylogenetic analyses

Mating systems and parental care are some of the most variable social traits. The project uses vertebrate diversity to understand the evolution of breeding system variation in fishes, amphibians, reptiles birds and mammals. Read more

Self-funded project: New biological diagnostics for environmental contaminants

Application accepted for either MSc by Research or PhD. We are interested in using biological methods to detect both biological and chemical contamination in environmental samples. Read more

Self funded BMS Project: Understanding the population dynamics of haematopoietic stem cells during gene therapy for sickle cell disease

Applications accepted for PhD Only. Background. This project builds on the recent discovery that whole genome sequencing approaches in blood stem and progenitor cells can be used to estimate the number of actively contributing blood stem cells in humans (Lee-Six et al., Nature 2018). Read more

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