Cell and Developmental Biology PhDs
The Department of Cell and Developmental Biology has a very active MPhil/PhD programme. We currently have sixty-one research students from all over the world including the UK, Europe, America, Thailand, Costa Rica and China. Students are regularly monitored by a small committee appointed among experts in the field, which stimulates interactions between laboratories, and excellent courses are offered on generic research and other skills (speaking, writing, imaging, etc.).
- Cell and Developmental Biology PhD Programme: available for three years in a single laboratory (or five years part-time) - see 'Applicants with Independent Funding' section below. There is currently no Departmental funding available for these, but you may apply for a UCL Scholarship.
- UCL-Birkbeck MRC PhD programme
- Developmental and Stem Cell Biology PhD Programme: available for three or four years - see headings below for further information on September 2019 entry. Application deadline: Wednesday 2 January 2019. Applications from self-funded candidates are welcome. Please note that there is no funding attached to this programme, but you may apply for a UCL Scholarship. Interviews will be held in January/February 2019.
There is no application processing fee for these programmes
- Requirements for all PhD Programmes
To register for a PhD you will require one of the following:
- a first or upper second class UK Bachelor's degree in an appropriate subject, or an overseas qualification of equivalent standard from a recognised higher education institution
- a recognised Master’s degree
If you are an overseas applicant you will also require evidence of proficiency in English. The standard of English expected is the 'good level'.
- UCL Scholarships and other funding opportunities
There are a number of scholarships awarded through the College - please follow the instructions on the scholarships website. Candidates applying for positions in this Department should e-mail their additional documents (lay summary and supervisor's reference) to: Debbie Bartram
There are PhD research opportunities in all aspects of mitochondrial biology, bioenergetics and metabolism - further information on funding opportunities
- Cell and Developmental Biology PhD Programme - Applicants with Independent Funding
You are welcome to apply and commence studies throughout the year. Please follow steps 1-3:
Step 1: View the list of academic staff and study their research interests by visiting their web page and looking at some of their publications to decide whether you are interested in the research topics in that laboratory.
Step 2: E-mail your chosen supervisor(s) to discuss possible projects. This will also ensure that they have space for you in their laboratory and that they will guide you in your application.
Step 3: Complete an application form. Select "Division of Biosciences" for the UCL Department you are applying to and "Research Degree: Cell and Developmental Biology" for Programme Title.
- Additional Information - fees, prospectus, accommodation
- Developmental and Stem Cell Biology PhD Programme - Outline
This programme offers a unique environment with one of the largest and strongest concentrations of high quality developmental and stem cell biologists anywhere in the world.
The programme provides training at the interface between developmental and stem cell biology. It is available either as a 3 or 4 year programme. The 4 year version includes a first year with a taught component and rotations in 3 laboratories providing the basis for an informed choice and an excellent platform for progression in the research project in years 2-4. The 3 year version is available in laboratories in the Cell and Developmental Biology Department. Both include active, small group training in key skills including good writing, experimental design, reviewing papers and many modern techniques as appropriate to the project
- First year: 3 rotations of 3 months each in different laboratories, and a weekly journal club, overseen by all supervisors on the programme (4 year programme only).
- Second year: thesis work starts in August/September of the first year. In the second year, an advanced modern microscopy course and an intensive workshop to develop writing and reviewing skills take place in parallel, with a small group of 5-7 students.
- Third year: continue thesis research work, complemented with experimental design workshops.
- Fourth year: complete research project, write up thesis. Workshops on funding, career planning and other skills tailored to each student.
The 3 year version of the programme starts from the “second year” above.
- Developmental and Stem Cell Biology PhD Programme - Supervisors and Research Areas
Prof Jonathan Chubb, LMCB imaging transcriptional dynamics Dr Yanlan Mao, LMCB regeneration and repair
Prof Roberto Mayor, Dept of Cell and Developmental Biology the mechanism that underlies the development of the Neural Crest Dr Paola Oliveri, Dept of Genetics, Evolution and Environment
cell specification, regeneration and evolution
Prof Franck Pichaud, MRC LMCB
polarity and morphogenesis
Dr Richard Poole, Dept of Cell and Developmental Biology
cell fate plasticity and left-right asymmetry in the nervous system
Prof Stephen Price, Dept of Cell and Developmental Biology
how specificity is imparted to the formation of neuronal assemblies in the developing central nervous system
Prof Antonella Riccio, MRC LMCB epigenetics and differentiation Prof Patricia Salinas, Dept of Cell and Developmental Biology molecular mechanisms that regulate synapse formation, maintenance and function in the vertebrate nervous system Prof Claudio Stern, Dept of Cell and Developmental Biology
cell diversity and pattern in the early embryo
Dr Masa Tada, Dept of Cell and Developmental Biology
cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying co-ordinated and directed cell movements
Dr Francesco Saverio Tedesco, Dept of Cell and Developmental Biology
stem cells, muscle repair and regeneration
Prof David Whitmore, Dept of Cell and Developmental Biology
Prof Stephen Wilson, Dept of Cell and Developmental Biology
from genes to neurons and circuits in the developing zebrafish brain
- Developmental and Stem Cell Biology PhD Programme - How to Apply
Please complete a UCL Graduate Student application form
Select "Division of Biosciences" for the UCL Department you are applying to, then for Programme Title:
- 4 year programme "RRDDSCS4YR01 Research Degree: Developmental and Stem Cell Biology (4 years)"
- 3 year programme "RRDDSCSING01 Research Degree: Developmental and Stem Cell Biology"
Please note re the application process:
- For the 3 year programme, you can contact prospective supervisors and discuss a project before making your application. For the 4 year programme, this isn't necessary.
- When you submit your application, an e-mail request will automatically be sent to your referees providing them with a link to a secure website to upload a reference - please ensure that your referees add their references by the deadline of Wednesday 2 January 2019.
- You will be required to upload your transcripts - if you are a current student and do not yet have a final transcript, please upload those from the years you have completed to date. If you don't have a transcript, please upload a list of your marks in this space and forward the transcript to Admissions as soon as available.
- If you are applying for a UCL Scholarship, please see the 'UCL Scholarships and other funding opportunities' box above as there are additional steps to complete. For the 4 year programme, as this begins with lab rotations, the lay summary can be a brief outline of your research interests and there is no need to obtain a supervisor's reference as this will be added by the programme director if you are shortlisted.
If you have any queries on the PhD Programmes or problems with this website please e-mail Debbie Bartram, Graduate Research Administrator