Do you have a clear and specific interest in cancer, stem cells or developmental biology? Our Master’s programme Cancer, Stem Cells and Developmental Biology combines research in three areas: oncology, molecular developmental biology and genetics. The focus is on molecular and cellular aspects of development and disease, utilising different model systems (mice, zebrafish, C. elegans, organoids and cell lines). The programme will guide you through the mysteries of embryonic growth, stem cells, signalling, gene regulation, evolution, and development as they relate to health and disease.
Given that fundamental developmental processes are so often impacted by disease, an understanding of these processes is vital to the better understanding of disease treatment and prevention. Adult physiology is regulated by developmental genes and mechanisms which, if deregulated, may result in pathological conditions. If you have a specific interest in cancer, stem cells or developmental biology, this Master’s programme is the right choice for you. Cancer, Stem Cells and Developmental Biology offers you international, high ranked research training and education that builds on novel methodology in genomics, proteomics, metabolomics and bioinformatics technology applied to biomedical and developmental systems and processes.
In the Cancer, Stem Cells and Developmental Biology programme you will learn to focus on understanding processes underlying cancer and developmental biology using techniques and applications of post-genomic research, including microarray analysis, next generation sequencing, proteomics, metabolomics and advanced microscopy techniques. You explore research questions concerning embryonic growth, stem cells, signaling pathways, gene regulation, evolution and development in relation to health and disease using various model systems. As a Master’s student you will take theory courses and seminars, as well as master classes led by renowned specialists in the field. The courses are interactive, and challenge you to further improve your writing and presenting skills.
Compared to most other Master’s programmes in cancer and stem cell biology in the Netherlands, in Utrecht we offer:
As a MSc graduate trained in both fundamental and disease-oriented aspects of biomedical genetics you are in great demand. You’ll be prepared for PhD study in one of the participating or associated groups. Alternatively, leaving after obtaining your MSc degree you will profit from a solid education in molecular genetics, in addition to your specialised knowledge of developmental biology. You’ll find your way to biotechnology, the pharmaceutical industry or education.
Ecology and evolutionary biology offer a perspective on biology from the level of genes to communities of species.
In the master's degree program, you can become familiar with a wide variety of topics in three areas: ecology, evolutionary biology and conservation biology. You can choose studies from any of these areas, as well as from other master's degree programmes. The programme is diverse and multidisciplinary: teaching is done with lectures, laboratory and computer training courses, interactive seminars, study tours and field courses. The field courses range from the northern subarctic region to tropical rainforests.
Our wide expertise extends from molecular ecology to population and community biology. The Centres of Excellence of Metapopulation Biology and Biological Interactions are located in our department.
Our programme offers you a wide range of options: evolutionary biology or genetics for those interested in ecological genetics and genomics, as well as the ability to take advantage of the high-quality molecular ecology and systematics laboratory; conservation biology for those interested in regional or global environmental problems; and ecological modelling skills for those interested in computational biology. Our training also offers Behavioural Ecology.
Ecology, evolutionary biology and conservation biology are not only fascinating topics for basic research, they also have a key role in addressing global environmental challenges.
Upon graduating from the Master's degree in ecology and evolutionary biology programme, you will:
Further information about the studies on the Master's programme website.
The Master's degree program includes studies of ecology, evolutionary biology and conservation biology. The studies are organised in modules. You can affect the content of the studies by planning your personal curriculum. You can study the following themes:
The revolution in genetic mapping technology and the advent of whole genome sequences have turned quantitative genetics into one of the fastest growing areas of biology.
Based in the internationally renowned Institute of Evolutionary Biology, this MSc draws from the wealth of expertise available there, as well as the teaching, research expertise and facilities of Scotland’s Rural College, the University’s Centre for Molecular Medicine, the Medical Research Council’s Human Genetics Unit and the Roslin Institute (birthplace of Dolly the sheep).
Each year the syllabus is fine-tuned to suit current issues in evolutionary, plant, human and animal genetics.
This programme forms part of the quantitative genetics and genome analysis suite of programmes offering specialist routes, which also include Animal Breeding & Genetics and Human Complex Trait Genetics.
This programme consists of two semesters of taught courses followed by a research project, leading to a dissertation.
Courses are taught via lectures, tutorials, seminars and computer practicals. Assessment is by written examinations, in-course assignments and project work.
You will gain the knowledge and skills required to apply quantitative genetics theory to undertake research in evolutionary and quantitative genetics, population genetics and evolutionary genomics.
You will develop the in-depth knowledge and specialised skills required to apply quantitative genetics theory to practical problems, in both the biomedical and animal science industries, and to undertake research in evolutionary genetics, population genetics and genome analysis.
Translating fundamental biomedical discoveries into applied clinical practice and public health issues
Human Biology is the only specialisation in the Netherlands that combines fundamental human biology with clinical studies. It provides you with an extensive biological knowledge, and experience in working with animal and patient samples. In this way you’ll be trained to bridge the gap between early biomedical research results and clinical practice.
This wouldn’t be possible within the walls of the Faculty of Science. That’s why there’s an extensive collaboration between the Faculty of Science and the Radboud university medical center in the field of Human Biology. You’ll get the best of both worlds: a thorough background in for example molecular oncology, human genetics, physiology and metabolism as well as a clinical view on diseases. This is an excellent background for a medical researcher or a job at the interface of science and society, such as a consultant, policy officer or communications advisor in the area of food or health.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/humanbiology
- It is the only programme in the Netherlands that bridges the gap between fundamental biomedical research and clinical treatments.
- You’ll get the opportunity to work together with researchers from the Radboud university medical center.
- Radboud biologists and clinicians stand out in the fields of animal and human physiology, human genetics and disease, and molecular and cellular clinical studies.
- Clinical Biology offers internships at multiple related research institutes, such as the Radboud Institute for Molecular Life Sciences (RIMLS), the Radboud Institute for Health Sciences (RIHS) and the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour (DI).
- There are various opportunities to do an internship abroad thanks to our wide network of cooperating research groups.
After graduation, our students quickly take up positions as researchers in government departments, research organisations and medical or pharmaceutical companies. However, many of our graduates also apply their academic background to societal issues, for example as a communications or policy officer. In general, clinical biologists end up as a:
- Researcher in a hospital or a university
- Researcher in a company, either a large or a start-up company
- Supervisor of clinical trials
- Consultant in the area of health or food
- Policy officer in the area of health or food
- Communications officer at a hospital or a governmental organisation, like RIVM
- Teacher in biology or medical biology
PhD positions at Radboud University
Each year, Radboudumc offers PhD positions in this field of research. Of course, many graduates also apply for a PhD position at related departments in the Netherlands, or abroad.
- From human biology to clinical treatment
Human Biology at Radboud University connects fundamental biological research to clinical treatments. The courses will provide you with a solid background in human physiology and molecular biology, which you’ll apply in developing clinically-oriented research questions. As there’s an extensive collaboration between the Faculty of Science and the Radboud university medical center, you’ll become familiar with both perspectives.
In your internships you’ll work with biomaterials, such as patient and animal samples. This means you’ll apply your biological knowledge to real-life situations. Clinical biologists do not work with patients or clinical treatments directly.
- Three focus areas
This Master’s specialisation focuses on three main topics:
- Molecular Mechanisms of Novel Therapeutics
Which molecular mechanisms lead to cancer? And how can these be translated into clinical practice? These are key questions in the specialisation in Human Biology. For example, we’ll dive into the functioning of epigenetics (heritable modifications of chromosomes without altering the nucleotide sequence), transcription factors, tumour suppressors and immunotherapy.
- Human Genetics and Physiology
This part is about how new developments and discoveries in genetic and molecular fields can help individual patients to improve functionality, independence and quality of life. You’ll study genetic pathways and the functionality of individual organs, organ systems, regulatory mechanisms, and individuals as a whole, in an integrative way.
- Metabolism, Transport and Mobility
The energy balance in our body is one of the most important factors in health and disease. We’ll teach you how energy and metabolites are integrated into the larger cellular networks for metabolism, transport and motility.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/humanbiology
The MRC Human Genetics Unit discovers how changes in our DNA impact our lives.
We combine the latest computational and experimental technologies to investigate how our genomes work to control the function of molecules, cells and tissues in people and populations. For more than half a century our research has been dedicated to understanding human genetic disease.
Today we continue to apply our clinical and scientific expertise, harnessing the power of complex data, to improve health, and the lives of patients and their families. As well as delivering outstanding research, the institute creates a vibrant scientific community and a friendly research environment rich in both scientific and social opportunities.
Our PhD and MSc programmes harness strengths in different research disciplines (genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry and cell biology) tied to our scientific themes (disease mechanisms, biomedical genomics and genome regulation). Our programmes also provides a strong focus on computational biology, and state of the art imaging as part of the Edinburgh Super-Resolution Imaging Consortium. Over 30 principal investigators based in the MRC HGU contribute to these cross-disciplinary programmes spanning fundamental to clinical research.
The MRC Human Genetics unit offers 3 and 4 year PhD projects, please visit our programme website for current opportunities, and further details.
Entry requirements are described below and different PhD projects have different funding restrictions. To apply for any of our PhD programmes please select one of the buttons and dates to the right (For 4 year programmes, please select “3-year”).