About the DTP

The White Rose BBSRC DTP brings together the research of world-class molecular and cellular biosciences at the White Rose universities of Leeds, Sheffield and York. Our overarching theme is Mechanistic Biology and its Strategic Application – the study of basic, life-governing processes at all levels of organisation, from the atomic scale to the whole organism.

We carry out research in three key areas . . .

  • Agriculture and Food Security (AFS)
  • Industrial Biotechnology and Bioenergy (IBB)
  • World Class Underpinning Bioscience (WCUB)

which map directly onto key BBSRC priority areas and the research strengths of the three partner institutions. The students enrolled on our programme undertake an interdisciplinary training programme, as we believe this is essential in training students to prepare them for the challenges of modern bioscience.

Our mission is to train the bioscience researchers of the future, fully equipped to address and solve fundamental and strategic biological questions of national and global importance. We achieve this goal by offering research projects that encompass a wide range of model organisms and biological systems, physical methods, mathematical models and computational techniques applied to some of the most compelling biological questions.

The DTP brings together researchers from different disciplines, with supervisors who are biologists, chemists, physicists, engineers and mathematicians. We are exploiting recent developments in bioimaging, next generation sequencing, ‘omics technology and synthetic biology in our current research portfolio, through our established multi-disciplinary centres such as the Astbury Centre for Structural Molecular Biology, the Centre for Plant Sciences, the Krebs Institute, the Centre for Novel Agricultural Projects (CNAP), the York Structural Biology Laboratory and the York Centre for Complex Systems Analysis.

We have enhanced our capabilities with our close partnerships with eminent research institutions, who play a pivotal role in providing access to specialist technologies, as well as acting in an advisory role:

  • the Food & Environment Research Agency (Fera) – a leading supplier of scientific solutions, evidence and advice across the agri-food supply chain. Their interests align to our strategic priority in AFS, particularly in the areas of plant development and seeds, plant pathogens, plant breeding and microbial food safety.
  • the Research Complex at Harwell (RCaH) – providing facilities for researchers to undertake new and cutting edge scientific research in both life and physical sciences and the interface between them. Facilities include Diamond, the new third generation Synchrotron Radiation (SR) source, the ISIS neutron source, Central Laser Facility, MRC Mammalian Genetics Unit and Mary Lyon Centre, Membrane Protein Laboratory and a Biological Solid State NMR Facility.