University of Cambridge

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Wellcome Trust 4-Year (1+3) PhD Programme in Stem Cell Biology & Medicine

Studentships starting October 2018

Stem Cell Biology - Stem cells are defined by the dual capacity to self-renew and to differentiate. These properties sustain homeostatic cell turnover in adult tissues and enable repair and regeneration throughout the lifetime of the organism. In contrast, pluripotent stem cells are generated in the laboratory from early embryos or by molecular reprogramming. They have the capacity to make any somatic cell type, including tissue stem cells.

Stem cell biology aims to identify and characterise which cells are true stem cells, and to elucidate the physiological, cellular and molecular mechanisms that govern self-renewal, fate specification and differentiation. This research should provide new foundations for biomedical discovery, biotechnological and biopharmaceutical exploitation, and clinical applications in regenerative medicine.

Cambridge Stem Cell Community - The University of Cambridge is exceptional in the depth and diversity of its research in Stem Cell Biology, and has a dynamic and interactive research community that is ranked amongst the foremost in the world. By bringing together members of both the Schools of Biology and Medicine, this four year PhD programme will enable you to take advantage of the strength and breadth of stem cell research available in Cambridge. Choose from over 50 participating host laboratories using a range of experimental approaches and organisms.

Programme Outline:

During the first year students will:

  • Perform laboratory rotations in three different participating groups working on both basic and translational stem cell biology.
  • Study fundamental aspects of Stem Cell Biology through a series of teaching modules led by leaders in the field.
  • Learn a variety of techniques, such as advanced imaging, flow cytometry, and management of complex data sets.

Students are expected to choose a laboratory for their thesis research by June 2019, and will then write a research proposal to be assessed for the MRes Degree in Stem Cell Biology. This assessment will also be used to determine whether students continue on to a 3-year PhD.

Eligibility - We welcome applications from both EU and Non-EU applicants*, who hold (or expect to receive) a relevant degree. You must have a passion for scientific research. Please visit for full details, including how to apply.

*The Wellcome Trust provide funding at the Home (UK/EU) rate. The Cambridge Trust can supplement funding for successful International candidates to cover the difference between UK/EU and International fees.

Application Deadline: Thursday 4th January 2018

Interviews will be held on: 30th January 2018 to 1st February 2018

Informal enquiries are also welcome via email to

Please quote reference PS13650 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

Further information