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The genetic contribution of biological age differences in disease risk (T3/8)

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Thursday, December 05, 2019
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

Telomere length (TL) is reflective of cellular age, shortens over time and is proposed as a marker of biological age. Mean leucocyte TL (LTL) shows considerable inter-individual vaiability, is highly heritable and has been causally associated with several age-related diseases including heart disease and cancers. Here in Leicester we have measured LTL in all 500,000 individuals participating in UK Biobank, these exciting data will be used for this project.

This PhD will examine if TL interacts with genetically determined disease risk and the age of disease onset. This will include investigations of gene environment interactions on single diseases and grouped diseases, known as multimorbidity clusters. No one has yet sought to explain biological age interactions with genetic data in disease risk or via a polygenic risk score (PRS). The polygenic hazard score (PHS) is a tool for quantifying the polygenic contribution to the age of disease onset and has the potential to be a stronger predictor of early disease onset than PRS. TL interaction with PHS will determine if genetic determinants of early disease onset are dependent on the biological age of the individual.

This PhD provides an excellent foundation for a career in medical statistics or statistical genetics.

Entry Requirements

UK Bachelor Degree with at least 2:1 in a relevant subject or overseas equivalent.

University of Leicester English language requirements apply.

This project is available for UK/EU/International students.

How to Apply

Application advice and application link:

Funding Notes

This project is funded by the Wellcome Trust Doctoral Training Programme.

Stipend for the PhD: Year 1 £19,919; Year 2 £21,542; Year 3 £23,298; Year 4 £23,997 (rates as of September 2019).

4 year PhD fee waiver at UK/EU rates.

International applicants need to ensure they can fund the difference between UK/EU and international fees for the duration of their studies.

We also will offer 2 fully funded places to international applicants from Lower-middle income countries per year. These will provide a full overseas fee waiver and stipend for 4 years.

Related Subjects

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