We have 88 Human Genetics PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

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Human Genetics PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

We have 88 Human Genetics PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

A PhD in Human Genetics would provide you with the time and resources to conduct a research project into Human genes. A subcategory of Genetics, Human Genetics focuses only on coding DNA, known as genes, in Humans. This could involve studying inheritance, identifying genes involved in disease or developing novel therapeutics that target gene expression. These projects are predominantly laboratory-based.

What’s it like to do a PhD in Human Genetics?

As a Human Genetics PhD student, you’ll develop a wide range of skills in and out of the laboratory, from having the technical ability to perform gel electrophoresis and western blots to polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Out of the laboratory, you’ll have excellent time management to plan your experiments, which can often span several days, and you’ll have gained a wide range of subject knowledge from reading the literature surrounding your speciality.

Some typical research topics in Human Genetics include:

  • Investigating novel genetic links to diseases such as atherosclerosis
  • Developing improved methods of assessing genetic risk for disease screening
  • Researching the possibility of mRNA treatments
  • Studying the genetics of inherited conditions
  • Investigating gene regulation e.g. during an immune challenge

The majority of Human Genetics programmes are advertised projects with the scope of the project determined by the supervisor. Many of these come with attached funding, while a few ask you to find your own funding, which can be challenging as you’ll need to cover PhD and bench fees. The difficulty self-funding also makes proposing your own project uncommon in Human Genetics.

Day-to-day you’ll be in the laboratory conducting experiments, puzzling over data and analysing it using techniques from Bioinformatics and you’ll speak to your colleagues and supervisor about your current and future work.

To be awarded your PhD you must complete a thesis of about 60,000 words that contributes to the knowledge of your field and be able to defend it during your viva exam.

Entry requirements

The entry requirements for most Human Genetics PhD programmes involve a Masters in a subject directly related to Biology, 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 Human Genetics funding options

The research council responsible for funding Human Genetics 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 less common for Human Genetics 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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Integrating AI to quantify pathogenic alterations to the Blood-Brain-Barrier in a human in vitro model

Summary. We are looking for a talented and motivated recent graduate in Biosciences, Biomedicine, Human Genetics or related discipline to engage in an exciting new project at Manchester Metropolitan University. Read more

Fully-funded PhD: Investigating the role of glycosylation in melanoma metastasis

  Research Group: Centre for Skin Sciences
Malignant Melanoma, the cancer of the melanocytes, is the deadliest form of skin cancer and its incidence in the UK has risen by ~32% in the last ten years (CRUK). Read more

Predicting eye disease risk using genetics

  Research Group: Statistical Genetics
About QIMR Berghofer. QIMR Berghofer is a world-leading translational medical research institute focused on improving health by developing new diagnostics, better treatments and prevention strategies, specifically in the areas of Cancer, Infection and Inflammation, Mental Health and Neuroscience, and Population Health. Read more

On-therapy monitoring of oesophageal cancer and recurrence detection: the Blood-based Liquid Sequencing Study (BLISS)

Oesophageal cancer is undergoing a therapeutic revolution, with first-generation immunotherapy trial results reading out in the next 12 months, and second-generation bispecific agents beginning evaluation alongside new targeted agents for Claudin 18.2, Her2, and FGFR. Read more

Circadian rhythm effects on radiotherapy for prostate and other cancers

  Research Group: Human & Medical Genetics
Radiotherapy is used to treat more than 50% of cancer patients, but up to a quarter of patients suffer side effects that can affect their quality of life in the long-term. Read more

Cell Free DNA (cfDNA) as a biomarker of early ovarian cancer

  Research Group: Edinburgh Cancer Research Centre
Ovarian cancer (OC) is the most lethal of all gynaecological cancers. most individuals are diagnosed at an advanced stage with fewer than 30% alive after five years. Read more

Axonal Transport of Mitochondria as a therapeutic Target in ALS

Project description. Investigating axonal transport of mitochondria as a therapeutic target in Neurodegeneration. Applications are being invited for a 3.5-year Basic Science PhD Studentship, starting in October 2024. Read more

The use of life course epidemiology to support the experimental characterisation of genetic variation

Project Background. There has been a rapid expansion in the generation of genetic sequence data over the last decade. Understanding the potential relevance of genetic mutations to human health remains challenging. Read more

The genetic map of human molecular phenotypes

Rationale. Genome wide associations studies (GWASs) have discovered many genetic associations with a large range of human traits, but the functional consequences of GWAS signals often remain elusive, as most GWAS signals reside in non-coding genomic regions. Read more

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