Biomedicine MPhil; PhD; MD

MPhil: minimum 12 months full time; minimum 24 months part time
PhD: minimum 36 months full time; minimum 72 months part time
MD: normally 24 months full time; normally 48 months part time


Fees per academic year 2014-15

UK and EU: full time £4,320-£13,500 (MPhil; PhD; MD) part time £2,160-£6,750 (MPhil; PhD; MD)
International: full time £14,800-£23,980 (MPhil; PhD; MD) part time fees

Fees vary according to the exact nature of the research project.
More information is available about tuition fees and discounts.

Research Areas

MPhil, PhD and MD supervision is normally available in the following areas:

Musculoskeletal Disease (including autoimmune arthritis):
With a focus on connective tissue diseases in three overlapping research programmes. These programmes aim to understand what causes the destruction of joints (cell signalling, injury and repair), how cells in the joints respond when tissue is lost (cellular interactions), and if we can alter the immune system and ‘switch off’ autoimmune disease (targeted therapies and diagnostics).

This research theme links with other local, national and international centres of excellence, has close integration of basic and clinical researchers and hosts the only immunotherapy centre in the UK.

The liver:
With particular interests in primary biliary cirrhosis (epidemiology, immunobiology and genetics), alcoholic and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, fibrosis and the genetics of other autoimmune and viral liver diseases.

With an emphasis on translational research, linking clinical- and laboratory-based science. Key research themes include: mechanisms of insulin action and glucose homeostasis; insulin secretion and pancreatic beta-cell function; diabetic complications; stem cell therapies; genetics and epidemiology of diabetes. There are strong links with the Newcastle Clinical Research Facility and Magnetic Resonance Centre.

There is a strong emphasis on the integration of clinical investigation with basic science. Research themes include: cell signalling in normal and diseased skin including mechanotransduction and response to ultraviolet radiation; dermatopharmacology including mechanisms of psoriatic plaque resolution in response to therapy; stem cell biology; regulation of apoptosis/autophagy; non-melanoma skin cancer/melanoma biology and therapy.

Applied Immunobiology (including organ and haematogenous stem cell transplantation):
Newcastle hosts one of the most comprehensive organ transplant programmes in the world. This clinical expertise has developed in parallel with the lively applied immunobiology and transplantation research group, which is currently investigating aspects of the immunology of autoimmune diseases and cancer therapy in addition to transplant rejection.

Uterine Cell Signalling:
Basic scientists and clinicians use state-of-the-art in situ cellular technologies and large-scale gene expression profiling. Novel in vivo approaches to cellular interactions have been developed using a unique human tissue resource. Projects include: the regulation of trophoblast function in health and disease; gene regulation and mechanisms of quiescence in the myometrium.

Pharmacogenomics (including complex disease genetics):
Genetic approaches to the individualisation of drug therapy, including anticoagulants and anti-cancer drugs, and in the genetics of diverse non-Mendelian diseases, from diabetes to periodontal disease, are a focus. A wide range of knowledge and experience in both genetics and clinical sciences is utilised, with access to high-throughput genotyping platforms.

Clinical features and biomarkers of drug and chemical toxicity are related to in vitro mechanistic studies using human derived cell lines and human tissues, and to investigate factors contributing to differences in individual susceptibility such as age, drug interactions, environmental chemical exposure. Current interests include environmental chemicals and organophosphate pesticides, warfarin, psychiatric drugs and anti-cancer drugs.

Diagnostics and therapeutics (medical engineering and bio-nanotechnology):
Focus on applied research aims to underpin future clinical applications. Technology-oriented, demand-driven, research is conducted which relates directly to health priority areas such as cancer and cardiovascular and degenerative diseases. This research is sustained through extensive internal and external collaborations with leading UK and European academic and industrial groups, and has the ultimate goal of deploying next-generation diagnostic and therapeutic systems in the hospital and health-care environment. See also Nanoscale Science and Technology.

Respiratory Disease:
There is a broad range of research activities into acute and chronic lung diseases. As well as scientific studies into disease mechanisms, there is particular interest in translational medicine approaches to lung disease, studying human lung tissue and cells to explore potential for new treatments. Current areas of research include acute lung injury, lung infections, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and fibrotic disease of the lung, both before and after lung transplantation.

Kidney Disease:
There are a number of research programmes into the genetics, immunology and physiology of kidney disease and kidney transplantation. There are close links between basic scientists and clinicians with many translational programmes of work, from the laboratory to first-in-man and phase III clinical trials. Specific areas of interest include haemolytic uraemic syndrome, renal inflammation and fibrosis, the immunology of transplant rejection, tubular disease and cystic kidney disease.

Joint Doctoral PhD in Biomedical Sciences

Newcastle University offers an innovative Joint Doctoral PhD Degree Programme in biomedical sciences with the Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Indonesia (FKUI) (Universitas Indonesia, Jakarta).

Students spend at least one year of their studies in each university and are jointly supervised by staff from Newcastle University and Universitas Indonesia. The doctoral programme leads to a single award from both institutions. The development of the Joint Doctoral PhD Programme has been generously supported under the Prime Minister Initiative 2 Programme and the British Council Indonesia.

For more information about this joint doctoral research programme please contact:

Professor Steve Yeaman
Director of International Postgraduate Studies
Faculty of Medical Sciences
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7433

Research Degree Training and Skills Development

We have an international reputation for many areas of our research, which creates a dynamic environment for postgraduate study. In addition to subject-specific research training, our Medical Sciences Graduate School has a thriving postgraduate research culture, with additional support for international students. We have an excellent record for timely PhD submission, provide training in professional/key skills and research techniques and support personal development.

+Entrance Requirements

An upper-second-class Honours degree, or international equivalent, in a science or medicine related subject.

An upper-second-class Honours degree, or international equivalent, plus further research experience and/or a further qualification such as an MRes.

A MBBS, or an equivalent medical degree.

Applicants whose first language is not English require IELTS 6.5, TOEFL 90 (Internet-based), Pearson's PTE Academic Test 62 or equivalent.

Our INTO Newcastle University Centre can often provide extra tuition to help you meet the University's English language requirements.

The UK Border Agency (UKBA) has rules for international students regarding minimum English language requirements.

+Scholarships and Other Sources of Funding

Funded PhD positions are usually advertised on the Newcastle Biomedicine website.

International Students, consult your own government for funding. The University offers International Scholarships, and there are funding opportunities by external organisations available.

More information on scholarships, studentships, bursaries and other funding is available from our database.

+How to Apply

Visit our postgraduate application site.

Applications are considered throughout the year although specific deadlines for funding may apply. Further application advice is available from the Faculty of Medical Sciences.

There are three possible start dates for your research degree:

  • 6 January 2014
  • or 14 April 2014
  • 22 September 2014

However these dates are not mandatory and in some circumstances permission can be granted for alternative start dates.

Please note: As a formal condition of the offer to study at Newcastle University, students from outside the UK/EU are required to pay a deposit of £1,500 or submit an official letter of sponsorship for their chosen programme. The deposit payment is non refundable, but will be deducted from tuition fees upon registration.

+Further Information

For further information please contact:

Medical Sciences Graduate School
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7002

Subject Overview

This programme is within the subject area of Biomedicine

Student profiles:

Student Profile Photo

I chose Newcastle University because it has a very good reputation. The course was very well structured and the teaching staff were excellent.

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