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PhD Studentship in Translational Immunology: Predicting and Understanding Flare in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Project Description

Number of awards:

Start date and duration:
October 2019 for 4 years.

Interested in immunology and its application to human disease? This PhD project will focus on rheumatoid arthritis, and aims to predict disease flare and better understand its immunological basis.

We seek an enthusiastic and motivated student to work within our team of scientists as we strive to understand the basis of rheumatic diseases and develop novel approaches to their treatment. This four-year PhD project will focus on the validation of biomarkers that predict drug-free remission and disease flare in rheumatoid arthritis, and the translation of them into a feasible assay suitable for future clinical development. You will also have the opportunity to explore the potential mechanisms underpinning disease flare in rheumatoid arthritis, linking with previous and ongoing experimental medicine studies within our group.

You will have access to state-of-the-art technology and expertise within Newcastle University, including our world-class Core Flow Cytometry and Core Genomics Facilities. You will gain experience in laboratory skills including high-throughput gene expression assays, tissue culture and novel flow cytometry techniques, as well as presentation and scientific writing skills. The opportunity to develop skills in multi-dimensional data analysis with support from our bioinformatics colleagues is also available. You will be supported by a dedicated team of academic supervisors, and have access to the University’s postgraduate researcher skills development programme.

JGW Patterson Foundation

Name of supervisor(s):
Dr Kenneth Baker and Dr David Swan, Institute of Cellular Medicine (

Eligibility Criteria:
You must have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree in biomedicine, physiology, microbiology or a related area. A further qualification such as an MSc or MRes is advantageous though not essential.

This award is available to UK/EU and international applicants. A successful international candidate would be required to make up the difference between the UK/EU fees and international fees.

How to apply:
You must apply through the University’s online postgraduate application system. To do this please ‘Create a new account’ (

Only mandatory fields need to be completed. However, you will need to include the following information:

insert the programme code 8300F in the programme of study section
select ‘PhD in the Faculty of Medical Sciences – Institute for Cellular Medicine as the programme of study
insert the studentship code CL115 in the studentship/partnership reference field
attach a covering letter and CV. The covering letter must state the title of the studentship, quote the studentship reference code CL115 and state how your interests and experience relate to the project
attach degree transcripts and certificates and, if English is not your first language, a copy of your English language qualifications.
For further details, please contact:

Dr Kenneth Baker:
Institute of Cellular Medicine (
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5337

Funding Notes

100% of UK/EU tuition fees, and additional annual living expenses of £15,226 per year for four years. A successful international candidate would be required to make up the difference between the UK/EU fees and international fees.

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