We have 30 Virology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships for European Students (exc UK)



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Virology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships for European Students (exc UK)

We have 30 Virology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships for European Students (exc UK)

PhD in Virology

A PhD in Virology would provide you with the chance to lead your own research project that will further our current understanding of viruses. Whether you’re researching the response of the human immune system to a given virus, attempting to use viruses to deliver therapeutics, or working on a vaccine, you’ll be aiming to improve and save lives.

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

Doing a PhD in Virology, you’ll become proficient in the laboratory with techniques including fluorescent antibody staining, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and cell culture. You’ll spend time reading around your research area and gain inspiration for methods to improve your experimental work.

Some typical research topics in Virology include:

  • Investigating viral replication
  • Assessing the impact of co-infection on an organism
  • Vaccine development
  • Developing novel therapies using viruses
  • Improving methods of viral detection
  • Studying the immune response to a certain virus

Almost all Virology PhD projects are advertised with the main research goal pre-determined. Many of these projects come with full funding attached, though some may require you to self-fund. Finding your own funding can be challenging since you must pay both PhD and bench fees. Self-funding and the difficulty finding a supervisor with research interest similar to yours, who also has the right equipment for your work.

During an ordinary workday, you’ll be in the laboratory performing, preparing or planning experiments, writing up sections of your thesis, and chatting to your colleagues and supervisor about your current and upcoming work.

To be awarded your PhD, you’ll need to submit a thesis of approximately 60,000 words and you’ll defend this during your viva exam.

Entry requirements

The entry requirements for most Virology PhD programmes involve a Masters in a subject directly related to Biology, with some experience in microbiology, at Merit or Distinction level. If English isn’t your first language, you’ll also need to show that you have the right level of language proficiency. 

PhD in Virology funding options 

The research council responsible for funding Virology 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 Virology 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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EASTBIO: How do animals and people evolve to resist infection?

  Research Group: Infection Medicine
All species are infected by a range of pathogenic agents, including viruses such as influenza and SARS-CoV-2. How different hosts respond to infection by a pathogen may vary dramatically from no clinical signs through to severe illness and death. Read more

White Rose BBSRC DTP: Understanding the drivers of viral lifestyles in the soil microbiome

The viruses that infect bacteria, known as phages, represent a major component of the soil microbiome. Yet their functional role in regulating bacterial populations and nutrient cycling remains unclear despite our need to understand what constitutes a healthy soil microbiome for food security. Read more

White Rose BBSRC DTP: Understanding the role of piRNAs in mosquito immunity

Vector-borne diseases afflict humans, livestock and plants – for example, according to WHO, vector-borne diseases comprise ~17% of all infectious disease of humans – and also threaten biodiversity by their impact on endangered species. Read more

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