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Graduate Admissions

Course closed:

Medical Science (Infection, Immunity and Inflammation) is no longer accepting new applications.

Taking advantage of the genomic revolution, this PhD programme allows students to move from the analysis of host and pathogen genetics, the identification of new genes and molecules, through immunogenomics, viral and bacterial pathogenesis, immune adaptation and evasion, complex genetic analysis of human disease to the macroscopic manifestation of infectious diseases in population dynamics and mathematical modelling.

By understanding the pathogen and how the immune system responds to that pathogen, together with the autoreactive potential of the immune response, we aim to improve our knowledge of the pathogenesis of both infectious and inflammatory disorders, as well as develop new treatment strategies to combat these conditions. While no student can be expert in all these areas, it is our premise that equipping the next generation of scientists with a rigorous training, skill set and broad academic insight will provide them with the expertise to bring novel and innovative approaches to the study of infection, immunity and inflammation.

Successful students will be awarded the MRes degree at the end of this first year and will start their PhD in the lab of their chosen supervisor. For the first year of the PhD phase of the programme, the students are probationary; they will only be registered for the PhD after successfully completing an assessment exercise (report and viva) at the end of their first year as a PhD student. The PhD itself is examined by dissertation and viva.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of their MRes course, students should:

  • have knowledge of the literature in three areas and a broad appreciation of scientific methods and techniques applicable to their own research;
  • have developed the ability to critically evaluate current research and research techniques and methodologies; and
  • be able to formulate research questions.

At the end of their PhD, students should additionally:

  • have a thorough knowledge of the literature and a comprehensive understanding of scientific methods and techniques applicable to their own research;
  • be able to demonstrate originality in the application of knowledge, together with a practical understanding of how research and enquiry are used to create and interpret knowledge in their field;
  • have self-direction and originality in tackling and solving problems;
  • be able to act autonomously in the planning and implementation of research; and
  • have gained oral presentation and scientific writing skills.


The MRes is a 12-month, full-time programme which forms an integral part of this four-year doctoral training programme (1+3).

Candidates who have been awarded an MRes and have been accepted into a research laboratory for doctoral work, move straight on to PhD study (years two through four) on completion of the MRes.


This course is advertised in the following departments:

Key Information

1+3 years full-time

Doctor of Philosophy
Master of Research in the first instance

This course is advertised in multiple departments. Please see the Overview tab for more details.


Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Sept. 3, 2018
Application deadline
Jan. 3, 2019
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2019

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Graduate Funding Competition
Jan. 3, 2019
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 10, 2018

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