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Masters Degrees (Systems Biology)

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Bioinformatics is changing as high throughput biological data collection becomes more Systems oriented. This means that employers are looking for people able to work across the traditional disciplines. Read more
Bioinformatics is changing as high throughput biological data collection becomes more Systems oriented. This means that employers are looking for people able to work across the traditional disciplines.

The MSc in Bioinformatics and Systems Biology at Manchester reflects these exciting developments, providing an integrated programme taught by researchers at the forefront of fields spanning Bioinformatics, Genomics and Systems Biology.

Bioinformatics has been an identifiable discipline for more than a decade, driven by the computational demands of high volumes of biological data. It incorporates both the development and application of algorithms to decipher biological relationships.

Enormous success has been achieved, for example in defining homologous families of sequences at the DNA, RNA, and protein levels. However, our appreciation of function is changing rapidly as experimental analysis scales up to cellular and organismal viewpoints.

At these levels, we are interested in the properties of a network of interacting components in a system, as well as the components themselves. The concepts or Systems Biology and Bioinformatics complement each other, and both are addressed in this course.
This combination reflects the current skills sought in academic and industrial (eg pharmaceutical) settings. An important feature is the extent to which computational biology is concerned with finding patterns in biological data, and generating hypotheses that feed back into experiments.

Teaching is delivered by more than ten academic staff working in the fields of Bioinformatics, Genomics and Systems Biology, representing the breadth and depth of these areas.

Aims

The Bioinformatics and Systems Biology course provides students with theoretical and practical knowledge of methods to analyse and interpret the data generated by modern biology. This involves the appreciation of biochemistry and molecular biology, together with the techniques of IT and computer science that will prepare students for multidisciplinary careers in research.

To achieve this there are three main objectives:
-Provide biological background to the data types of Genomics, Proteomics and Metabolomics.
-Develop the computational and analytical understanding necessary as a platform for processing biological data.
-Demonstrate applications and worked examples in the fields of Bioinformatics and System Biology, integrating with student involvement through project work.

Coursework and assessment

Research projects provide experience in carrying through a substantive research project including the planning, execution and communication of original scientific research. They are assessed by written report.

Taught units involve lectures, practicals and problem classes and are assessed through both coursework and exam.

Course unit details

The taught part of the course runs from September to April and consists of 60 credits delivered from four 15 credit units.
-Bioinformatics
-Programming Skills
-Computational Systems Biology
-Experimental Design and Statistics

You will undertake two research project, each of 60 credits, in Semester 2 and the summer. Additionally tutorials and the Graduate Training Programme (skills development) will run through the whole programme.

Career opportunities

Graduates acquire a wide range of subject specific and transferable skills and gain extensive research experience. Around half of each class find PhD positions straight after the MSc, whilst others build upon their training to enter careers in biology and IT. The combination of Systems Biology and Bioinformatics addressed in this course reflects the current skills sought in academic and industrial (e.g. pharmaceutical) settings.

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This course provides specialist skills in core systems biology with a focus on the development of computational and mathematical research skills. Read more
This course provides specialist skills in core systems biology with a focus on the development of computational and mathematical research skills. It specialises in computational design, providing essential computing and engineering skills that allow you to develop software to program biological systems.

This interdisciplinary course is based in the School of Computing Science and taught jointly with the Faculty of Medical Sciences and the School of Mathematics and Statistics. The course is ideal for students aiming for careers in industry or academia. We cater for students with a range of backgrounds, including Life Sciences, Computing Science, Mathematics and Engineering.

Computational Systems Biology is focused on the study of organisms from a holistic perspective. Computational design of biological systems is essential for allowing the construction of complex and large biological systems.

We provide a unique, multidisciplinary experience essential for understanding systems biology. The course draws together the highly-rated teaching and research expertise of our Schools of Computing Science, Mathematics and Statistics, Biology, and Cell and Molecular Biosciences. The course also has strong links with Newcastle's Centre for Integrated Systems Biology of Ageing and Nutrition (CISBAN).

Our course is designed for students from both biological and computational backgrounds. Prior experience with computers or computer programming is not required. Students with mathematical, engineering or other scientific backgrounds are also welcome to apply.

The course is part of a suite of related programmes that also include:
-Bioinformatics MSc
-Synthetic Biology MSc
-Computational Neuroscience and Neuroinformatics MSc

All four programmes share core modules, creating a tight-knit cohort. This encourages collaborations on projects undertaking interdisciplinary research.

Project work

Your five month research project gives you a real opportunity to develop your knowledge and skills in depth in Systems Biology. You have the opportunity to work closely with a leading research team in the School and there are opportunities to work on industry lead projects. You will have one-to-one supervision from an experienced member of the faculty, supported with supervision from associated senior researchers and industry partners as required.

The project can be carried out:
-With a research group at Newcastle University
-With an industrial sponsor
-With a research institute
-At your place of work

Placements

Students have a unique opportunity to complete a work placement with one of our industrial partners as part of their projects.

Previous students have found placements with organisations including:
-NHS Business Services Authority
-Waterstons
-Metropolitan Police
-Accenture
-IBM
-Network Rail
-Nissan
-GSK

Accreditation

We have a policy of seeking British Computer Society (BCS) accreditation for all of our degrees, so you can be assured that you will graduate with a degree that meets the standards set out by the IT industry. Studying a BCS-accredited degree provides the foundation for professional membership of the BCS on graduation and is the first step to becoming a chartered IT professional.

The School of Computing Science at Newcastle University is an accredited and a recognised Partner in the Network of Teaching Excellence in Computer Science.

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Systems biology is a rapidly emerging discipline within the life sciences offering a organicist view on biology. It is making us aware of the connectedness of living systems where interactions between molecules, genes, cells, species and the environment are responsible for the regulation of biological functions. Read more
Systems biology is a rapidly emerging discipline within the life sciences offering a organicist view on biology. It is making us aware of the connectedness of living systems where interactions between molecules, genes, cells, species and the environment are responsible for the regulation of biological functions. The emergence of biological function cannot be reduced to a linear summation of the functions of its individual parts but rather needs to be investigated in its natural context. This implies that decoding the individual parts of a biological system by using the bioinformatician's toolbox marks only the first step in the systems biology cycle for knowledge discovery. This cycle describes the process that connects and couples a biological system through an in-vivo or in-vitro experiment to a mathematical model that is based on acquired, quantitative data. The mathematical model itself can then generate quantifiable predication that in turn can be validated against the biological model system. If completion of this loop succeeds we have indeed gained a deeper insight into or understanding of the modelled biological process.

Systems biology therefore spans several disciplines and is by and large a team effort. Closing the communication gap between life science graduates and members of the other sciences (e.g. chemistry, physics, mathematics) and engineers (e.g. computer science) is therefore a particular challenge for a systems biology course. We have addressed this challenge by offering students a flexible, fully online provided course that makes use of modern teaching technologies guiding them through the interesting and challenging teaching material at their own pace.

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Our Systems Biology MRes is a research-based course with a taught component that is equivalent to an MSc. It provides a springboard into a career that involves a working knowledge of scientific research. Read more
Our Systems Biology MRes is a research-based course with a taught component that is equivalent to an MSc. It provides a springboard into a career that involves a working knowledge of scientific research.

The course is designed for graduates with a BSc in the life sciences or other science disciplines, and for intercalating and fully qualified MBBS or BDS students. It can be taken either as a stand-alone qualification or as an entry route onto a PhD or MD.

The taught component of the course includes subject-specific content in the area of systems biology. You have the flexibility to develop your own bespoke course by selecting additional, complementary modules. You will also participate in training in general research principles, and other professional and key skills.

Subject-based modules aim to develop a new generation of creative, innovative scientists and engineers, whose expertise spans the biological and physical domains. It introduces you to systems biology approaches that enable you to understand and manipulate complex biological systems, particularly the vulnerability of such systems to stress.

Your research project comprises the major element of the course. This project will involve 24 weeks of research in an area of systems biology under the supervision of an expert academic researcher in the field.

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The two-year MSc Bioinformatics concerns a new scientific discipline with roots in computer science, statistics and molecular biology. Read more

MSc Bioinformatics

The two-year MSc Bioinformatics concerns a new scientific discipline with roots in computer science, statistics and molecular biology. Bioinformaticians apply information technology to store, retrieve and manipulate these data and employ statistical methods capable of analysing large amounts of biological data to predict gene functions and to demonstrate relationships between genes and proteins.

Programme summary

DNA contains information about life, but how is this information used? Biological data, such as DNA and RNA sequence information produced by next-generation sequencing techniques, is accumulating at an unprecedented rate. Life scientists increasingly use bioinformatics resources to address their specific research questions. Bioinformaticians bridge the gap between complex biological research questions and this complex data. Bioinformaticians use and develop computational tools to predict gene function(s) and to demonstrate and model relationships between genes, proteins and metabolites in biological systems. Bioinformatics is an interdisciplinary field that applies computational and statistical techniques to the classification, interpretation and integration of large-scale biological data sets. If different data types are joined then complex interactions in biological systems can be studied. The use of systems biology methods to study complex biological interactions offers a wealth of possibilities to understand various levels of aggregation and enables control of biological systems on different scales. Systems biology approaches are therefore quickly gaining importance in many disciplines of life sciences, such as in applied biotechnology where these methods are now used to develop strategies for improving production in fermentation. Other examples include bioconversion and enzymatic synthesis, and in the study of human metabolism and its alterations where systems biology methods are applied to understand a variety of complex human diseases, including metabolic syndromes and cancer. The Wageningen Master programme focuses on the practical application of bioinformatics and systems biology approaches in many areas of the Life Sciences. To ensure that students acquire a high level of understanding of modelling and computing principles, the students are trained in the fundamentals of database management, computer programming, structural and functional genomics, proteomics and systems biology methods. This training includes advanced elective courses in molecular biology and biostatistics.

Thesis tracks

Bioinformatics
The bioinformatics track focuses on the practical application of bioinformatics knowledge and skills in molecular life sciences. It aims at creating and using bioinformatics resources to address specific research questions. The knowledge and skills gained can be applied in many life science disciplines such as molecular & cell biology, biotechnology, (human) genetics, health & medicine and environmental & biobased technology.

Systems Biology
The systems biology track focuses on the study of the complex interactions in biological systems and on the emerging properties derived from these. Systems biology approaches to complex biological problems offer a wealth of possibilities to understand various levels of aggregation. It enables control of biological systems on completely different scales, ranging from the molecular cellular level to marine, plant, or animal ecosystems to a desired state. The knowledge and skills gained can be applied in many life science disciplines including molecular & cell biology, applied biotechnology, genetics, medicine and vaccine development, environmental and biobased technology.

Your future career

Bioinformatics and Systems Biology are new fast growing biology based interdisciplinary fields of research poorly served by the traditional curricula of Life Sciences. As demand has outpaced the supply of bioinformaticians, the first job after graduation is often a PhD project at a research institute or university. It is expected that five years after graduation, about one third will stay employed as a scientist at a university or research centre, while the others choose for careers at research-oriented pharmaceutical and biotechnological companies.

Alumnus Tom van den Bergh.
"It is sometimes difficult for doctors to diagnose genetic diseases caused by missense mutations. A missense mutation does not necessarily mean that you have the gene-associated disease and will become ill since not all missense mutations lead to appreciable protein changes." Tom created a database for Fabry’s disease for his final thesis. He wrote a computer programme that reads publications and stores all information about Fabry mutations in its database. Genetic researchers can, in turn, quickly access this database to determine if the mutation they found in a patient has already been addressed in literature and what the effects were.

Related programmes:
MSc Biotechnology
MSc Molecular Life Sciences
MSc Plant Biotechnology

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This specialist postgraduate degree provides you with high-quality postgraduate training in bioinformatics. It provides a foundation for the development of essential bioinformatics knowledge and skills, as well as an introduction to the emerging field of systems biology. Read more
This specialist postgraduate degree provides you with high-quality postgraduate training in bioinformatics. It provides a foundation for the development of essential bioinformatics knowledge and skills, as well as an introduction to the emerging field of systems biology. The course is run in parallel with an MRes course that includes a larger research component.

The programme is designed for students from a range of scientific backgrounds, who want to pursue research training in the interdisciplinary field of bioinformatics and systems biology. It is relevant to those seeking a future career in both academia and industry.

On successful completion of this programme, students from all backgrounds should be able to:

- Understand the core concepts and statistical fundamentals that underpin the field of bioinformatics, most notably in the area of sequence analysis.
- Program in Python, and design and query databases using SQL. Experience of more advanced programming practices (such as software testing and application development) will also be gained.
- Explain core biological concepts (such as genes and genomes, protein structure and function) and growth areas such as Next Generation Sequencing and (at least at an introductory level) systems modelling.

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Applications are invited for the MSc in Bioinformatics and Theoretical Systems. Biology. The programme will provide an interdisciplinary training and applications. Read more
Applications are invited for the MSc in Bioinformatics and Theoretical Systems
Biology. The programme will provide an interdisciplinary training and applications
are invited from students graduating from any biological, physical, computational
or mathematical first degree course. We are keen to encourage graduates from
numerical and physical sciences to join the course.

This programme will provide students with the necessary skills to produce effective
research in Bioinformatics and Systems Biology. The course, which is based at the
South Kensington campus, has been designed and is taught by staff from the Faculties
Natural Sciences, Engineering (Computing) and Medicine.

In the first term, students take the following courses:
• Bioinformatics and Systems Biology - Introduction to biology; advanced tools for the
analysis of biological data; and approaches for modelling biological systems
• Computing - Python, R, & Unix
• Mathematics & statistical inference - high level algorithms & analysis of large datasets

The remainder of the year is devoted to three full-time research projects,
undertaken under the supervision of researchers at Imperial College.

Wellcome Trust 4 year PhD Programme

Please note there is also a separate funded 4 year PhD programme, supported by the Wellcome Trust, which starts with this Master’s course and then progresses to a three year PhD. The closing date for application is Monday 5 December 2016 for admission in October 2017. Details, including how to apply, can be found at

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/wellcome-bioinformatics-phd/

Applicants must have or be expected to obtain at least an upper second honours
degree or an equivalent overseas qualification. Please be aware that we do not
do any 'wet lab' research as part of our courses, it is purely computer based. If you
are not an EU citizen, we do not have any finance for our MSc. For further details and the application procedure
see:

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This Masters in Bioinformatics is a new, exciting and innovative programme that has grown out of our well-regarded MRes in Bioinformatics. Read more
This Masters in Bioinformatics is a new, exciting and innovative programme that has grown out of our well-regarded MRes in Bioinformatics. Bioinformatics is a discipline at the interface between biology and computing and is used in organismal biology, molecular biology and biomedicine. This programme focuses on using computers to glean new insights from DNA, RNA and protein sequence data and related data at the molecular level through data storage, mining, analysis and display - all of which form a core part of modern biology.

Why this programme

◾Our programme emphasises understanding core principles in practical bioinformatics and functional genomics, and then implementing that understanding in a series of practical-based elective courses in Semester 2 and in a summer research project.
◾You will benefit from being taught by scientists at the cutting edge of their field and you will get intensive, hands-on experience in an active research lab during the summer research project.
◾Bioinformatics and the 'Omics' technologies have evolved to play a fundamental role in almost all areas of biology and biomedicine.
◾Advanced biocomputing skills are now deemed essential for many PhD studentships/projects in molecular bioscience and biomedicine, and are of increasing importance for many other such projects.
◾The Semester 2 elective courses are built around real research scenarios, enabling you not only to gain practical experience of working with large molecular datasets, but also to see why each scenario uses the particular approaches it does and how to go about organizing and implementing appropriate analysis pipelines.
◾You will be based in the College of Medical, Veterinary & Life Sciences, an ideal environment in which to train in bioinformatics; our College has carried out internationally-recognised research in functional genomics and systems biology.
◾The new programme reflects the development and activities of 'Glasgow Polyomics'. Glasgow Polyomics is a world-class facility set up in 2012 to provide research services using microarray, proteomics, metabolomics and next-generation DNA sequencing technologies. Its scientists have pioneered the 'polyomics' approach, in which new insights come from the integration of data across different omics levels.
◾In addition, we have several world-renowned research centres at the University, such as the Wellcome Trust Centre for Molecular Parasitology and the Wolfson Wohl Cancer Research Centre, whose scientists do ground-breaking research employing bioinformatic approaches in the study of disease.
◾You will learn computer programming in courses run by staff in the internationally reputed School of Computing Science, in conjunction with their MSc in Information Technology.

Programme structure

Bioinformatics helps biologists gain new insights about genomes (genomics) and genes, about RNA expression products of genes (transcriptomics) and about proteins (proteomics); rapid advances have also been made in the study of cellular metabolites (metabolomics) and in a newer area: systems biology.

‘Polyomics’ involves the integration of data from these ‘functional genomics’ areas - genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics - to derive new insights about how biological systems function.

The programme structure is designed to equip students with understanding and hands-on experience of both computing and biological research practices relating to bioinformatics and functional genomics, to show students how the computing approaches and biological questions they are being used to answer are connected, and to give students an insight into new approaches for integration of data and analysis across the 'omics' domains.

On this programme, you will develop a range of computing and programming skills, as well as skills in data handling, analysis (including statistics) and interpretation, and you will be brought up to date with recent advances in biological science that have been informed by bioinformatics approaches.

The programme has the following overall structure
◾Core material - 60 credits, Semester 1, made up of 10, 15 and 20 credit courses.
◾Elective material - 60 credits, Semester 2, students select 4 courses (two 10 credit courses and two 20 credit courses) from those available.
◾Project - 60 credits, 14 weeks embedded in a research group over the summer.

Core and optional courses

◾Programming (Java)
◾Database Theory and Application
◾Foundations of Bioinformatics
◾Omics and Systems Approaches in Biology
◾These 4 courses are obligatory for those taking the MSc degree and the PgDip; they are also obligatory for those with no prior programming experience taking the PgCert.
◾60-credit summer research project lasting 14 weeks - this is also obligatory for those taking the MSc programme; normally this will be with one of the research laboratories in Glasgow associated with the programme, but there is also the opportunity to study in suitable laboratories in other parts of the world.

Optional courses include:
◾RNA-seq and next generation transcriptomics
◾Metagenomics
◾Pathogen Polyomics
◾Using Chemical Structure Databases in Drug Discovery for Protein Targets
◾Identification of disease-causing genetic variants
◾A range of more general biology and computing biology courses are also available in semester 2.

Career prospects

Most of our graduates embark on a research career path here in the UK or abroad using the skills they've acquired on our programme - these skills are now of primary relevance in many areas of modern biology and biomedicine. Many are successful in getting a PhD studentship. Others are employed as a core bioinformatician (now a career path within academia in its own right) or as a research assistant in a research group in basic biological or medical science. A postgraduate degree in bioinformatics is also valued by many employers in the life sciences sector - e.g. computing biology jobs in biotechnology/biosciences/neuroinformatics/pharma industry. Some of our graduates have entered science-related careers in scientific publishing or education; others have gone into computing-related jobs in non-bioscience industry or the public sector.

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Cell and Systems Biology (CSB) offers a ma​ster's program leading to the​ degree of Master of Science and a doctoral program leading to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the fields of cell, molecular​, and systems biology. Read more
Cell and Systems Biology (CSB) offers a ma​ster's program leading to the​ degree of Master of Science and a doctoral program leading to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the fields of cell, molecular​, and systems biology. Students undertaking graduate programs in CSB pursue research related to fundamental mechanisms in the growth, development, and behaviour of organisms ranging from unicellular microbes to more complex organisms in the plant and animal kingdoms. Research projects extend from the molecular level to that of whole organisms interacting with each other and their environment.​​

​​Students enjoy state-of-the-art facilities and make use of cutting-edge approaches including functional genomics, genetics, metabolomics, proteomics, bioinformatics, computational biology, cell biology, developmental biology, molecular biology, and physiology.

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The York Centre for Complex Systems Analysis (YCCSA) at the University of York focuses on using interdisciplinary research approaches to tackle complex real-world problems. Read more
The York Centre for Complex Systems Analysis (YCCSA) at the University of York focuses on using interdisciplinary research approaches to tackle complex real-world problems. Our interdisciplinary Masters by Research programme brings together teams of students and supervisors to address specific research problems from an interdisciplinary perspective. Each student is registered in their home discipline department, but the student and supervisor team works together in YCCSA, jointly tackling a real research problem, whilst learning interdisciplinary research skills. Successful students will graduate with a Masters by Research degree from their department.

Our interdisciplinary group of biologists, physicists, and computer scientists are investigating processes in cellular systems biology, through wet-lab experiments, novel Raman spectroscopy techniques, and novel computational simulations.

We are recruiting a team of up to three Masters research students to further progress this work. The students will work in an interdisciplinary team to progress this research.

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Molecular biology is a key area underpinning modern biology in the post-genomic era. The science of molecular biology analyses the structure and function of organisms – viral, microbial and eukaryotic – at a molecular level. Read more
Molecular biology is a key area underpinning modern biology in the post-genomic era. The science of molecular biology analyses the structure and function of organisms – viral, microbial and eukaryotic – at a molecular level. The structure and function of nucleic acids, genes, proteins and cell-signalling molecules are also analysed by molecular biology. Molecular biology techniques can be used to investigate errors in cellular systems that are fundamental to an advanced understanding of disease aetiology. In addition, innovations in molecular biology permit sophisticated modification of organisms, and manipulation of their functions, to permit the production of novel products and the development of novel therapeutic technologies. The burgeoning global bioscience sector creates a continuing demand for the education of scientists at postgraduate level skilled in molecular biology.

The MSc Molecular Biology with Professional Experience, is an extended full-time Masters programme with a substantive professional experience component. Within the professional experience modules, students have the option of undertaking an internship with a host organisation or, alternatively, campus-based professional experience. Internships are subject to a competitive application and selection process and the host organisation may include the University.

Internships may be paid or unpaid, and this will depend on what is being offered and agreed with the host organisation. Students who do not wish to undertake an internship or are not successful in securing an internship will undertake campus-based professional experience, which will deliver similar learning outcomes through supervised projects and activities designed to offer students the opportunity to integrate theory with an understanding of professional practice.

WHY CHOOSE THIS COURSE?

This course is intended for life science graduates from both home and overseas courses who wish to develop their knowledge and skills in biosciences with an emphasis on molecular biology. The aim of the course is to produce scientists who will be able to contribute to a range of careers including academic, commercial, industrial and healthcare applications of molecular biology. This course is also an excellent foundation for those wishing to pursue research in molecular biology at PhD level.

You will have the opportunity to study a broad range of Molecular Biology at a theoretical and a practical level. You will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience of molecular biology techniques. You will have the opportunity to develop a range of transferrable and research skills that will develop your knowledge and enhance your employment potential.

WHAT WILL I LEARN?

The course is focused on the key elements of molecular biology and comprises modules on the following topics:
-Genomes and DNA Technology
-Cell Culture and Antibody Technology
-Mammalian Cell and Molecular Biology
-Molecular Microbiology
-Molecular Biology of Disease

The course will also comprise a Research Skills module. In addition, a Research Project forms part of the MSc course.

Additionally, the understanding gained from these modules will be demonstrated and applied in either the University-based project (12 months full-time or 24 months part-time, on course HLST104), or the professional experience modules giving students the option of undertaking an internship with a host organisation or, alternatively, campus-based professional experience.

HOW WILL THIS COURSE ENHANCE MY CAREER PROSPECTS?

Molecular biology is one of the most buoyant sectors of the biosciences jobs market. Indeed, molecular biology is a key area underpinning modern biology in the post-genomic era. Consequently, many different branches of biology in both the academic and industrial sectors make use of molecular biology skills and rely on analyses at the molecular level to drive developments. It is predicted that growth in the Molecular Biology employment market will be above average over the period 2010–20.

GLOBAL LEADERS PROGRAMME

To prepare students for the challenges of the global employment market and to strengthen and develop their broader personal and professional skills Coventry University has developed a unique Global Leaders Programme.

The objectives of the programme, in which postgraduate and eligible undergraduate students can participate, is to provide practical career workshops and enable participants to experience different business cultures.

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The MSc in Applied Biosciences and Biotechnology aims to. To equip graduates to pursue careers in bioscience and biotechnology either in industry or academic research. Read more
The MSc in Applied Biosciences and Biotechnology aims to:

• To equip graduates to pursue careers in bioscience and biotechnology either in industry or academic research.
• Produce graduates with an in-depth understanding of the core principles and methodologies underlying current biotechnological research.
• To enable students to develop the transferable qualities and skills required for employment or research in the biosciences sector.
• Produce bioscience graduates with training in relevant business and entrepreneurial skills.
• Provide a training in laboratory and research skills.
• Meet the global need for graduates who can successfully contribute to the rapidly developing industrial biotechnology sector.

The biotechnology sector has grown rapidly in recent years and there are increasing career opportunities worldwide for experienced graduates who have been trained in advanced molecular bioscience, systems biology and ‘omics’ technologies, together with exposure to entrepreneurship and innovation. Demand for these skills is predicted to increase sharply over the next decade due to investment in the “green economy”, notably in the areas of bioenergy and industrial biotechnology. Moreover glycoprotein biopharmaceuticals comprise an increasing proportion of new drugs and their development, manufacture and quality control demands interdisciplinary skills in applied biosciences and biotechnology which can only be gained via advanced training at postgraduate level.

Degree structure
The course is comprised of three parts: a taught component, a tutored dissertation, which includes a mini-conference, and a research component. The taught component in weeks 1-30 will include lectures, seminars, computer practicals and tutorials. Computer based practicals will be held throughout weeks 1-14. The dissertation will be carried out in weeks 31-35. A full time laboratory based research project will be carried out from week 36 to 52.

Weeks 1-15: Induction week followed by courses in Biochemistry, Molecular Cell Biology, Bioinformatics, Systems Biology and Statistics which introduce students to the fundamental concepts of modern biology, including cell biology, genomics, proteomics, experimental techniques and data handling. Assessment will be through a written examination in week 15.
Weeks 16-30: All students attend two modules comprising advanced lectures in applied bioscience and biotechnology encompassing: industrial biotechnology, glycol-technology, structural biology, cellular damage, repair and ageing, genes and genomics, infection and immunity, stem cells and regenerative medicine, neurobiology in health and disease, integrative systems biology and synthetic biology. Additional seminars and workshops will introduce students to innovation and entrepreneurship. All students will attend weekly seminars from invited external speakers from industry and the public sector. Assessment will be through two written examinations in week 30.
Weeks 31-35: Students will undertake a full-time tutored dissertation followed by a mini-conference.
Weeks 36-52: Students will undertake full-time individual projects in the research laboratories of the Department of Life Sciences.

Please see course webpage on the Imperial website for further information: http://www.imperial.ac.uk/life-sciences/postgraduate/masters-courses/msc-in-applied-biosciences-and-biotechnology/

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The only Master’s specialisation in the Netherlands covering the function of our epigenome, a key factor in regulating gene expression and in a wide range of diseases. Read more

Master's specialisation in Medical Epigenomics

The only Master’s specialisation in the Netherlands covering the function of our epigenome, a key factor in regulating gene expression and in a wide range of diseases.
Our skin cells, liver cells and blood cells all contain the same genetic information. Yet these are different types of cells, each performing their own specific tasks. How is this possible? The explanation lies in the epigenome: a heritable, cell-type specific set of chromosomal modifications, which regulates gene expression. Radboud University is specialised in studying the epigenome and is the only university in the Netherlands to offer a Master’s programme in this field of research.

Health and disease

The epigenome consists of small and reversible chemical modifications of the DNA or histone proteins, such as methylation, acetylation and phosphorylation. It changes the spatial structure of DNA, resulting in gene activation or repression. These processes are crucial for our health and also play a role in many diseases, like autoimmune diseases, cancer and neurological disorders. As opposed to modifications of the genome sequence itself, epigenetic modifications are reversible. You can therefore imagine the great potential of drugs that target epigenetic enzymes, so-called epi-drugs.

Big data

In this specialisation, you’ll look at a cell as one big and complex system. You’ll study epigenetic mechanisms during development and disease from different angles. This includes studying DNA and RNA by next-generation sequencing (epigenomics) and analysing proteins by mass spectrometry (proteomics). In addition, you‘ll be trained to design computational strategies that allow the integration of these multifaceted, high-throughput data sets into one system.

Why study Medical Epigenomics at Radboud University?

- Radboud University combines various state-of-the-art technologies – such as quantitative mass spectrometry and next-generation DNA sequencing – with downstream bioinformatics analyses in one department. This is unique in Europe.
- This programme allows you to work with researchers from the Radboud Institute for Molecular Life sciences (RIMLS), one of the leading multidisciplinary research institutes within this field of study worldwide.
- We have close contacts with high-profile medically oriented groups on the Radboud campus and with international institutes (EMBL, Max-Planck, Marie Curie, Cambridge, US-based labs, etc). As a Master’s student, you can choose to perform an internship in one of these related departments.
- Radboud University coordinates BLUEPRINT, a 30 million Euro European project focusing on the epigenomics of leukaemia. Master’s students have the opportunity to participate in this project.

Career prospects

As a Master’s student of Medical Epigenomics you’re trained in using state-of-the art technology in combination with biological software tools to study complete networks in cells in an unbiased manner. For example, you’ll know how to study the effects of drugs in the human body.
When you enter the job market, you’ll have:
- A thorough background of epigenetic mechanisms in health and disease, which is highly relevant in strongly rising field of epi-drug development
- Extensive and partly hands-on experience in state-of-the-art ‘omics’ technologies: next-generation sequencing, quantitative mass spectrometry and single cell technologies;
- Extensive expertise in designing, executing and interpreting scientific experiments in data-driven research;
- The computational skills needed to analyse large ‘omics’ datasets.

With this background, you can become a researcher at a:
- University or research institute;
- Pharmaceutical company, such as Synthon or Johnson & Johnson;
- Food company, like Danone or Unilever;
- Start-up company making use of -omics technology.

Apart from research into genomics and epigenomics, you could also work on topics such as miniaturising workflows, improving experimental devices, the interface between biology and informatics, medicine from a systems approach.

Or you can become a:
- Biological or medical consultant;
- Biology teacher;
- Policy coordinator, regarding genetic or medical issues;
- Patent attorney;
- Clinical research associate;

PhD positions at Radboud University

Each year, the Molecular Biology department (Prof. Henk Stunnenberg, Prof. Michiel Vermeulen) and the Molecular Developmental Biology department (Prof. Gert-Jan Veenstra) at the RIMLS offer between five and ten PhD positions. Of course, many graduates also apply for a PhD position at related departments in the Netherlands, or abroad.

Our approach to this field

- Systems biology
In the Medical Epigenomics specialisation you won’t zoom in on only one particular gene, protein or signalling pathway. Instead, you’ll regard the cell as one complete system. This comprehensive view allows you to, for example, model the impact of one particular epigenetic mutation on various parts and functions of the cell, or study the effects of a drug in an unbiased manner. One of the challenges of this systems biology approach is the processing and integration of large amounts of data. That’s why you’ll also be trained in computational biology. Once graduated, this will be a great advantage: you’ll be able to bridge the gap between biology, technology and informatics , and thus have a profile that is desperately needed in modern, data-driven biology.

- Multiple OMICS approaches
Studying cells in a systems biology approach means connecting processes at the level of the genome (genomics), epigenome (epigenomics), transcriptome (transcriptomics), proteome (proteomics), etc. In the Medical Epigenomics specialisation, you’ll get acquainted with all these different fields of study.

- Patient and animal samples
Numerous genetic diseases are not caused by genetic mutations, but by epigenetic mutations that influence the structure and function of chromatin. Think of:
- Autoimmune diseases, like rheumatoid arthritis and lupus
- Cancer, in the forms of leukaemia, colon cancer, prostate cancer and cervical cancer
- Neurological disorders, like Rett Syndrome, Alzheimer, Parkinson, Multiple Sclerosis, schizophrenia and autism

We investigate these diseases on a cellular level, focusing on the epigenetic mutations and the impact on various pathways in the cell. You’ll get the chance to participate in that research, and work with embryonic stem cell, patient, Xenopus or zebra fish samples.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/medicalbiology/epigenomics

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The MSc in Biotherapeutics educates students on the practical uses of molecular advances in the discovery of protein and other biomolecular drug candidates and their development into biotherapeutics. Read more

Programme Description

The MSc in Biotherapeutics educates students on the practical uses of molecular advances in the discovery of protein and other biomolecular drug candidates and their development into biotherapeutics. It will provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the development of biotherapeutics, beginning with pre-clinical modelling and target identification together with antibody engineering, biochemical and biophysical characterisation, and development issues for bioprocessing. Systems biology of biotechnological processes and approaches to the analysis of proteomics-based discovery data will be covered in detail together with mathematical modelling, bioinformatics analysis and data integration strategies. Regulatory issues, and innovation and commercialisation strategies, will also be covered. Mammalian cell culture and bioprocess laboratory structure will be comprehensively covered in addition to novel approaches to therapeutic development. A practical drug discovery laboratory project will form a significant component of the experience of how candidates are identified and brought through the development pipeline.

Key Fact

This programme is the culmination of close collaboration between the UCD School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Science, Systems Biology Ireland and the Biopharmaceutical Industry in Ireland and across the world.

Course Content and Structure

The structure of the programme is as follows:

Semester 1
• Biotherapeutic Discovery and Development I
• Professional Career Development
• Recombinant DNA Technology
• Business of Biotechnology & Science
• Biomedical Diagnostics
• High Content Screening Microscopy
• Pharmacology & Drug Development

Semesters 2 & 3
• Biotherapeutic Discovery and Development II
• Systems Biology in Drug Development
• Professional Career Development
• Bioprocessing Laboratory
• Emerging Issues in Biotechnology
• Regulatory Affairs
• Microbial & Animal Cell Products
• Project – Biotherapeutic Development

Career Opportunities

This advanced graduate degree in Biotherapeutics has been developed in consultation with the Biopharmaceutical industry and is recognised and valued by them. A key feature is the undertaking of a significant drug discovery and development laboratory project which is reviewed by industry partners. This engagement is designed to help graduates identify opportunities in the industry at the earliest stage. Prospective employers include: Novartis, Glaxo SmithKline, Eli Lilly, Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Janssen Biologics, AstraZeneca, MSD, Bristol Myers Squibb, Abbott, Sanofi.

Facilities and Resources

Students on this programme will benefit from the use of a research skills laboratory in the prestigious UCD Conway Institute, as well as state-of-the-art teaching and laboratory facilities
in the new O'Brien Centre for Science.

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Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Environmental Biology. Read more

Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Environmental Biology: Conservation & Resource Management at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017).

The MSc Environmental Biology: Conservation and Resource Management course focuses on the relationships between living organisms and the terrestrial, freshwater and marine environments, coupled with the interactions that result from natural and anthropogenic processes.

On the Environmental Biology: Conservation and Resource Management course you will benefit from advanced training in the interpretation of local and global environmental issues, field and theoretical aspects of biology and ecology, and in analytical techniques. You will also develop the skills necessary to work confidently in vocational areas such as conservation, environmental impact assessment, environmental management, monitoring and education, and foster an objective, scientific and realistic approach to environmental biological issues that you may have to face in a professional capacity.

Graduates from the Environmental Biology: Conservation and Resource Management course go on to work for government agencies such as CCW, Environment Agency, English Nature, Scottish Heritage, Fisheries Research Services, CEFAS. Other organisations include zoos, wildlife parks and reserves, national parks, environmental departments, research and development of SMEs as well as large companies. Graduates also go on to do postgraduate research.

Modules

Modules on the Environmental Biology: Conservation & Resource Management MSc include:

Core Science Skills and Research Methods

Conservation of Aquatic Resources

Term papers in Environmental Biology

Environmental Assessment and Management

Ecosystems

Remote sensing of the changing environment

Geographical Information Systems

Research Project

Please visit our website for a full description of modules for the Environmental Biology: Conservation & Resource Management programme.

Facilities

As a student on the MSc Environmental Biology: Conservation & Resource Management programme, you will benefit from a range of facilities such as:

Our excellent facilities include a unique built Animal Movement Visualisation Suite (£1.35m), incorporating an electronic wall linked to a computer-tesla cluster for high-speed processing and visualisation of complex accelerometry and magnetometry data derived from animals. Coupled with this facility is the Electronics Lab with capacity for research, development and realisation of animal tags with new capacities (sensors, energy-harvesting systems, miniaturization, 3-D printing of housings etc.); a custom-designed 18m on coastal research vessel; a recent investment of £4.2m on a new suite of state-of-the art Science laboratories; and the £2m unique Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research (CSAR) with a 750 m2 controlled environment building, with programmable recirculating aquatic systems, unique within the UK’s higher-education sector. These are tailored for research on a diverse range of organisms, ranging from temperate to tropical and marine to freshwater. Coupled with this are nutrient and biochemical analytical capabilities.

Student profiles

“I’ve spent four years as a student at Swansea University, three years as an undergraduate studying Marine Biology and a year as a postgraduate undertaking the MSc in Environmental Biology: Conservation and Resource Management. Whether studying or partying I can honestly say I had a fantastic time the whole way through! It was through my undergraduate study that I realised how amazingly diverse the marine ecosystem is, but also how vulnerable it can be and the level of exploitation it endures. This prompted me to undertake the MSc, which furthered my knowledge in many aspects of conservation and environmental issues around the world on sea and land. With my experience and expertise gained from studying at Swansea I have secured a job working with WWF Cymru in Cardiff as Marine Policy Officer where I am helping work towards a sustainable future for the Welsh marine environment.”

David Parker

BSc Marine Biology

MSc Environmental Biology: Conservation & Resource Management

Marine Policy Officer, WWF Cymru, Cardiff

Research

We are 7th in the UK and top in Wales for research excellence (REF 2014)

93.8% of our research outputs were regarded as world-leading or internationally excellent and Swansea Biosciences had the highest percentage of publications judged ‘world-leading’ in the sector. This is a great achievement for the Department, for the College of Science and indeed for Swansea University.

All academic staff in Biosciences are active researchers and the department has a thriving research culture.



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