Additional PhD places for Oct 2020 entry

L: Post-graduate researcher, Sarah Good (on the left), with her supervisor, Patricija van Oosten Hawle

Update @ March 2020

The White Rose BBSRC Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) in Mechanistic Biology has been allocated additional funding for studentships to start in October 2020.  We are therefore introducing an additional round of recruitment and selection.

Application deadline: Monday 6th April 2020 (23:59 hrs)

Interviews will be held on-line on Tuesday 28th April 2020

Funding provided

4 year fully-funded PhD programme of integrated research and skills training, starting Oct 2020:

  • a tax-free stipend at the standard Research Council rate (~£15,009, to be confirmed for 2020) for 4 years
  • tuition fees at the UK/EU rate for 4 years.
  • research costs
  • A conference / training allowance

Professional development 

Acceptance of a studentship within the White Rose BBSRC DTP implies a commitment to undertake all aspects of professional development.

Our four year studentships include the additional benefit of undertaking a three month, Professional Internship for PhD Students (PIPS) with an external host organisation, to provide experience and develop work-related skills beyond the pure academic environment.  See the PIPS pages on this website for more information.

For CASE studentships, students do not undertake a PIPS placement.  Instead, they undertake a placement with the named industrial partner.

In addition to PIPS / industrial placements and other development opportunities within your home university, the DTP provides central training and cohort-building activities for the benefit of all our Post-Graduate researchers.  See the training pages on this website for more information.

Entry requirements

At least a 2:1 honours degree in a relevant subject or equivalent. The interdisciplinary nature of this programme means that we welcome applications from students with backgrounds in any biological, chemical, and/or physical science, students with mathematical backgrounds who are interested in using their skills in addressing biological questions.

Studentships are available to UK and EU students who meet the UK residency requirement i.e. that they have been residing in the UK for at least 3 years continuously prior to the start of the PhD.

Luke Fountain, PhD student working in the field

Projects on offer

Not all projects will be funded; the DTP will appoint a limited number of candidates via a competitive process.

Uncovering ligand-receptor interactions in the zebrafish model

Understanding how small molecules affect the activity of signalling pathways underpins the discovery of molecular tools for pathway manipulation and the design of new therapeutic compounds.


Whole-animal imaging to track cellular responses during wound healing

The study of regenerative biology aims to elucidate the innate ability of organisms to replace tissues or organs after they have been removed or damaged.


Identification of biochemical changes linked to age-related hearing loss and their association with neurological disorders

Age-related hearing loss (ARHL) causes a progressive loss of hearing sensitivity, impaired sound localization and decreased ability to understand speech, especially in noisy environment (Gates & Mills, 2005 Lancet 366:1111).


Bacterial antibiotic resistance is a growing problem worldwide. The latter half of the twentieth century has witnessed the dissemination of multidrug-resistant bacteria.


Sucking the energy out of TB: cryoEM and functional biophysics to target respiratory complexes in Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Tuberculosis (TB) is a devastating disease caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium tuberculosis and is one of the top 10 causes of death worldwide (World Health Organisation; 2016).


Defining a functional link between constitutive and transcriptional defences to oxidative stress in neurons

The activator protein-1 (AP-1) transcription factor is comprised of a Fos and Jun dimer and is the primary mediator of protective and pro-apoptotic responses of neurons to reactive oxygen species (ROS)


Dissecting mechanisms of mRNA translational control by specialised ribosomes

The average cell contains ~10 million ribosomes, comprised of ~80 ribosomal proteins and 4 rRNAs. Until recently it was thought that all ribosomes were the same.


Plant geometry – the biophysical and molecular basis of gravitropism and growth angle control

Gravitropism is a fundamental process in the control of plant architecture, which ensures that shoots typically grow up and roots down, allowing light interception and gas exchange above ground and water and nutrient uptake below.


Role of m6A methylation in virus infection

RNA can be chemically modified and it’s now emerging that the modification status of an RNA can affect its fate and function. The most common mRNA modification, m6A methylation, functions by recruiting so-called effector m6A reader proteins to modified RNAs.


Application deadline: Monday 6th April 2020 (23:59 hrs)

Interviews will be held on-line on Tuesday 28th April 2020