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Immunology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

We have 145 Immunology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

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Biological Sciences

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I am a self funded student


We have 145 Immunology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

An immunology PhD would give you the opportunity to research a specific area of the immune system in great detail. You’ll likely be trying to understand how cells communicate, the role of certain signals, or how the immune system is altered in specific diseases. These projects are almost always laboratory-based.

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

As a PhD student in Immunology, you’ll gain extensive laboratory skills, particularly in cell culture, and develop the ability to critically appraise methods used in the literature to decide which is best for your research.

Some typical research topics in Immunology include:

  • Autoimmune diseases
  • The immune system and cancer
  • Vaccine development
  • Anti-inflammatory drug development
  • Communication between immune cells
  • The immune system and disease

A majority of Immunology programmes are advertised with full funding attached. These are advertised on the university website and are either three-year programmes or part of a four-year doctoral training programme. While the general research aim is pre-determined by the supervisor for advertised projects, you’ll be responsible for shaping the project along the way.

Proposing your own research in Immunology is rare as you must find a supervisor with research goals that align with yours, that has the instruments you’ll need and find adequate funding to cover bench fees alongside PhD fees.

In your daily life you’ll be performing experiments in the laboratory, analysing and creating figures from previous data, and talking through methods and results with your supervisor and colleagues. At the end of your PhD, you’ll contribute to your field by producing an original thesis of around 60,000 words and defend it during your viva exam.

Entry requirements

The entry requirements for most Immunology 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 Immunology funding options

The research council responsible for funding Immunology 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 Immunology 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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