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Masters Degrees in Molecular Biology, Netherlands

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Do you want to unravel the fundamental processes in living cells? Do you want to understand 'life' at a molecular level? Do you want to explore applications based on basic molecular research?. Read more
Do you want to unravel the fundamental processes in living cells? Do you want to understand 'life' at a molecular level? Do you want to explore applications based on basic molecular research?

Molecular Biology and Biotechnology are internationally oriented research and business areas that profit from a strong multidisciplinary knowledge on structural biology, biochemistry, molecular cell biology, genetics, microbiology and systems biology. During this programme, you acquire in-depth knowledge and skills via upperlevel theoretical and practical training. You become highly competent in the field of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, with excellent perspectives for an independent career in an academic or industrial research environment.

The programme is mainly organized by the Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute (GBB) and is closely related to research institute. Research is fundamental and curiosity-driven and contains specialisation in the following areas:
- Molecular Systems Biology
- Molecular Cell Biology of Complex Biological Processes
- Membrane Proteins
- Structure-function Relationships of Proteins
- Microbial Biotechnology and Biocatalysis
- Chemical and Synthetic Biology

Why in Groningen?

- Connected to research institute GBB, which maintains a strong international reputation and covers the field of systems, chemical, and synthetic biology
- Internationally oriented research and business area
- Excellent MSc students from Molecular Biology & Biotechnology may apply during their first year for the selective Top programme Biomolecular Sciences

Job perspectives

Biomolecular scientists, graduates of the Master's degree programme in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, can pursue a career in:
- PhD in the areas of Biomolecular Sciences, Life Science, Biochemistry, Biomedical Sciences, and Bio(nano-)technology
- R&D position within Life Sciences Industry
- Scientific Advisor within a company

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The Top Programme Biomolecular Sciences is part of the Master's degree programme in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology and will educate you at an advanced level. Read more
The Top Programme Biomolecular Sciences is part of the Master's degree programme in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology and will educate you at an advanced level.

The Top Programme in the MSc Molecular Biology & Biotechnology prepares you for conducting top quality research in the field of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology. The research you will be engaged in during the programme is closely connected to the Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute (GBB), This research institute has an international reputation within the covering field of synthetic biology.

During this programme you get the chance to contribute on biobased solutions for societal challenges in chemistry, energy, and health. You will acquire top quality research competences and become highly attractive for a research career in the area of Biomolecular Sciences. Your career will either start with a PhD research or at an R&D institution.

One semester of comprehensive courses must be successfully completed in order to receive the special annotation of the Top Programme on the diploma supplement for Molecular Biology and Biotechnology. Admission is highly selective.

Why in Groningen?

- Highly selective study programme with emphasis on research.
- Prepares you for conducting top quality research in the field of molecular biology and biotechnology.
- Connected to the research institute GBB, which has a strong international reputation and also covers the field of systems, chemical, and of synthetic biology.

Job perspectives

When you have finished the Top Programme in Biomolecular Sciences, you have excellent opportunities to continue your academic career via a subsequent PhD study. Various Top programme students even received offers for PhD positions during their Master's research projects.

You will also have an excellent background to obtain a position in R&D laboratories in Life Sciences industries.

Job examples

- PhD research position
- R&D position in Applied Sciences institutions or Life Sciences industries

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Translating fundamental biomedical discoveries into applied clinical practice and public health issues. Clinical Biology is the only specialisation in the Netherlands that combines fundamental human biology with clinical studies. Read more
Translating fundamental biomedical discoveries into applied clinical practice and public health issues

Clinical 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 Clinical 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/clinicalbiology

Why study Clinical Biology at Radboud University?

- 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.

Career prospects

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.

Our approach to this field

- From human biology to clinical treatment
Clinical 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.

- Biomaterials
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 Clinical 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/clinicalbiology

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Aspiring to contribute to the development of new therapies for metabolic, infectious and immunological diseases or cancer? Radboud University's internationally acclaimed Research Master's programme in Molecular Mechanisms of Disease provides an excellent foundation for a career in academic or commercial research. Read more

Understanding the molecular basis of disease

Aspiring to contribute to the development of new therapies for metabolic, infectious and immunological diseases or cancer? Radboud University's internationally acclaimed Research Master's programme in Molecular Mechanisms of Disease provides an excellent foundation for a career in academic or commercial research.

Only by dissecting the molecular mechanisms that trigger and advance diseases and dysfunctions can we design effective treatments and medicines. The Research Master's in Molecular Mechanisms of Disease (MMD) offers you an intensive two-year programme that provides you with in-depth knowledge and research experience of disease-related molecular mechanisms. In addition, you will acquire skills such as academic writing and presentation skills and learn how to successfully apply for grants and market yourself.

Passion for molecular biomedical research

As an MMD student you will be part of the unique research community that is found within the Radboud Institute for Molecular Life Sciences (RIMLS). Like you, RIMLS researchers have a strong passion for research. They will assist you throughout the programme with guidance and expertise, supporting you in acquiring knowledge and developing excellent research skills. The RIMLS is one of the research institutes of the Radboud university medical center, so their research is closely linked to the clinic and thus aimed at translating results into treatments for patients. Examples include the translation of insights into the biology of antigen-presenting cells into new immunological cancer therapies and understanding the mutations underlying blindness into the development of gene therapies for patients with inherited blindness.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/mmd

Why study Molecular Mechanisms of Disease at Radboud University?

- You will follow a broad biomedical programme that allows you to specialise in your specific field-of-interest.
- You will have intense daily contact with established researchers.
- You will participate in group-oriented education and be part of a small group of highly motivated national and international students.
- A personal mentor will help you to reflect on your study programme and career perspective.
- You will do two 6-months research internships one of which will be abroad.
- There is a 92% pass rate of MMD students within the two years.
- International MMD students can apply for scholarships from the Radboudumc Study Fund.

Career prospects

There is considerable demand for experts in the molecular biomedical sciences as well as in their application to the development of treatments for diseases such as cancer, autoimmune and inflammatory disorders, and metabolic diseases.

Graduates in MMD are equipped with cutting-edge knowledge of multidisciplinary research in the mechanisms of disease and in state-of-the-art diagnostic methods and technologies. During the programme, you will develop a highly critical, independent approach to problem-solving. You will also acquire the basic management skills needed to lead R&D projects in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries.

Most of our graduates will enter an international PhD programme to continue with research in academia or industry.

PhD opportunities

The MSc Molecular Mechanisms of Disease aims to provide all skills and knowledge necessary to rapidly enter an international PhD programme. In the Netherlands and many places in Europe, it is impossible to start a PhD programme directly after obtaining a Bachelor's degree. This research Master’s programme seriously increases your chances for obtaining an excellent PhD training position by giving you a mature perspective and a broad range of experimental approaches. In fact, over 90% of our graduates has started a (funded) PhD project.

The Radboud Institute for Molecular Life Sciences (RIMLS) recruits about fifty PhD students a year. MMD graduates are excellent candidates for these positions. Furthermore, the Radboud university medical centre offers the opportunity for its research-oriented Master's students to write their own research project. The best candidates are awarded a fully funded four-year PhD studentship at the department of their choice.

Our approach to this field

The molecular regulation of cellular processes is crucial for human development, and maintenance of health throughout life. It's evident that cellular malfunction is the cause of common multi-factorial diseases such as diabetes, immune and inflammatory disorders, renal disease, cardiovascular, metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases as well as obesity and cancer.

The Radboud Institute for Molecular Life Sciences (RIMLS) Graduate School plays a key role in developing new therapies for the fight against such diseases. RIMLS aims to improve diagnostics and develop new treatments by generating basic knowledge in the molecular biomedical life sciences and translating it into clinical application and experimental research in patients.

The RIMLS – which is part of Radboud university medical center – offers an exclusive Master's programme in Molecular Mechanisms of Disease. Top researchers and clinicians teach the programme.

Key themes

The MMD programme is organised along three major educational themes which reflect the main research areas present in the RIMLS and which each include both a fundamental and a disease-related aspect:
- Theme 1 Infection, Immunity and Regenerative Medicine / Immunity-related Disorders and Immunotherapy
- Theme 2 Metabolism, Transport and Motion / Metabolic Disorders
- Theme 3 Cell Growth and Differentiation / Developmental Disorders and Malignancies

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/mmd

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The two year MSc Biology concerns understanding the complexity of biological systems, at scales ranging from single molecules to whole ecosystems, provides a unique intellectual challenge. Read more

MSc Biology

The two year MSc Biology concerns understanding the complexity of biological systems, at scales ranging from single molecules to whole ecosystems, provides a unique intellectual challenge. The biosciences aim to understand living systems and to help preserve biodiversity and our environment and simultaneously produce sufficient healthy and safe food.

Programme summary

Biological issues are at the forefront of the technological progress of modern society. They are central to global concerns about how we effect and are affected by our environment. Understanding the complexity of biological systems, at scales ranging from single molecules to whole ecosystems, provides a unique intellectual challenge. The MSc Biology allows students to get a broad overview of the latest developments in biology, ranging from genes to ecosystems. They learn to critically discuss the newest scientific developments in the biological sciences. Within their area of specialisation, students deepen their knowledge and skills in a certain subject. To prepare for a successful international career, we strongly encourage our students to complete part of their programme requirements abroad.

Specialisations

The MSc Biology offers nine specialisations:

Animal Adaptation and Behavioural Biology
This specialisation focuses mainly on subjects as adaptation, mechanisms involved in these adaptations and behaviour of animals.

Bio-interactions
In this specialisation, you obtain knowledge about interactions between organisms. You learn to understand and interpret interactions on different levels, from molecular to ecosystem level.

Molecular Ecology
In this specialisation, you learn to use molecular techniques to solve ecological questions. You will use, for example, molecular techniques to study the interaction between a virus and a plant.

Conservation and Systems Ecology
This specialisation focuses initially on fundamental processes that play a key role in ecology. You learn to interpret different relations, for example, the relation between chemical (or physical processes) and bioprocesses. Furthermore, you learn to analyse different ecosystems. You can use this knowledge to manage and conserve these ecological systems.

Evolution and Biodiversity
The systematics of biodiversity in an evolutionary perspective is the central focus of this specialisation. Subjects that will be addressed in this specialisation are: evolution, genetics, biosystematic research and taxonomic analysis.

Health and Disease
This specialisation focuses on regulatory mechanisms that have a central role in human and animal health.

Marine Biology
Choosing this specialisation means studying the complexity of the marine ecosystem. Moreover, you learn about the impacts of, for instance, fishery and recreation on this ecosystem or the interaction between different species in this system.

Molecular Development and Gene Regulation
This specialisation focuses on gene regulations and the different developmental mechanisms of organisms.

Plant Adaptation
This specialisation focuses on the adaptations that different plants gained in order to adjust to various conditions. You learn to understand the regulation processes in plants that underlie these adaptations.

Your future career

Many graduates from the MSc Biology study programme enter careers in fundamental and applied research or go on to become PhD students. Some find a position as communication officer, manager or policymaker. Compared with other Dutch universities, many biology graduates from Wageningen University find a position abroad.

Alumna Iris de Winter.
"I work as a PhD student at Wageningen University. In my research, I aim to understand the effect of human disturbance on the parasites prevalence in lemurs. I also look at the potential risks of the transmission of diseases and parasites from lemurs to humans, but also vice versa, from humans (and their livestock and pets) to wild lemur population. I alternate my fieldwork in Madagascar with parasite identification, analyses and writing manuscripts in the Netherlands. With this research, I hope to gain more insight in the factors that increase parasite prevalence in natural systems and hereby to improve the protection of both lemurs and their natural habitat."

Related programmes:
MSc Molecular Life Sciences
MSc Animal Sciences
MSc Plant Sciences
MSc Forest and Nature Conservation
MSc Biotechnology
MSc Plant Biotechnology
MSc Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management
MSc Organic Agriculture.

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Working at the interface of Chemistry, Biology and Medical science. In Nijmegen we offer a multidisciplinary Master's programme in Molecular Life Sciences. Read more

Introduction

Working at the interface of Chemistry, Biology and Medical science
In Nijmegen we offer a multidisciplinary Master's programme in Molecular Life Sciences. Working at the interface of chemistry, biology and medical science, you will not only explore the basic principles of molecules and cells, but also their role in health and disease. This combination of scientific topics translated into medical implications and solutions is unique in the Netherlands.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/mls

Specialisations within the Master's in Molecular Life Sciences

The Master's programme in Molecular Life Science is closely associated with chemistry and medical biology. You can choose a specialisation in Chemistry or in Medical Biology
- Chemistry for Life
- Clinical Biology
- Medical Epigenomics
- Neuroscience

Career prospects

Most graduates go on to do a PhD in Nijmegen, at another Dutch university or abroad. Each year our research institutes have a number of PhD vacancies. Some find a job as a researcher or manager in the pharmaceutical industry, in the private commercial sector or in research organisations.

Our research in this field

- Top scientists
The programme is closely associated with two institutes that have an excellent international reputation:
- the Institute of Molecules and Materials
- the Nijmegen Centre for Molecular Life Sciences.

You will enter a dynamic research environment, work with top scientists, learn about the latest developments in your discipline and conduct research in state-of-the-art laboratories. Thanks to cooperation with the neighbouring University Medical Centre, there is continuous exchange between Lab and Clinic.

- Great freedom and personal tutor
You will be given considerable freedom to follow your own interests. Two internships are central to the programme. You choose a specialisation and you join a related research group, for example Anthropogenetics, Molecular Biology, Pharmacology, Neurobiology or Bioinformatics. You will have your personal tutor who will help you decide which subjects and research to follow. Your second internship will be with a different research group or related to your variant. You can also choose to follow an internship abroad or within a company. In making your choice, you will be able to benefit from the extensive international networks of our scientists.

- The Nijmegen approach
The first thing you will notice as you enter our Faculty of Science is the open atmosphere. This is reflected by the light and transparent building and the open minded spirit of the working, exploring and studying people that you will meet there. No wonder students from all over the world have been attracted to Nijmegen. You study in small groups, in direct and open contact with members of the staff. In addition, Nijmegen has excellent student facilities, such as high-tech laboratories, libraries and study ‘landscapes'.

Studying by the ‘Nijmegen approach' is a way of living. We will equip you with tools which are valuable for the rest of your life. You will be challenged to become aware of your intrinsic motivation. In other words, what is your passion in life? With this question in mind we will guide you to translate your passion into a personal Master's programme.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/mls

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Radboud University’s Master’s specialisation in Microbiology deals with the interface between fundamental biological and medical sciences. Read more
Radboud University’s Master’s specialisation in Microbiology deals with the interface between fundamental biological and medical sciences. It focuses on molecular, medical and environmental microbiology to improve our health and environment and provides in-depth insight into present-day microbial research in general and clinical microbiology.

The major topics of the Microbiology specialisation are:

Environmental microbiology and Biotechnology

Microorganisms can be used to break down environmental pollutants and toxic chemicals. Therefore microbiology has the potential to replace common energy-intensive chemical processes with more sustainable solutions. Radboud University collaborates closely with environmental scientists and industrial partners to create energy-efficient and environmentally friendly solutions for societal waste problems.

Immunology

Unfortunately some microorganisms make us ill. A better understanding of battle between our immune system and these microorganisms will lead to the development of improved vaccines.

Molecular Microbiology

The genome of a microorganism is a key factor in research, because it determines how the organisms interact with the host cell and how they cause diseases. Molecular Microbiology acts on the interface between microbiology, molecular biology and genetics and is fundamental for the development of novel antibiotics and improvement of vaccines against microorganisms.

Top research

The department of Microbiology at Radboud University has been bestowed with the most prestigious science prizes, including two ERC Advanced Grants, a Spinoza Prize, and two Gravitation Grants. Additionally, many of out students have been awarded prizes for best thesis, poster and paper. The department works at the forefront of environmental microbiology and is specialised in the discovery of ‘impossible’, new anaerobic micro-organisms. The laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art bioreactors, electron microscopy, GC-MS, metagenomics, and metaproteomics facilities to grow and study micro-organisms that contribute to a better environment by consuming greenhouse gasses and nitrogenous pollutants.

Our approach to this field

- Research themes
The Master's specialisation Microbiology is mainly focused on research. You can choose one of the following themes as the subject of your research internship:

- Environmental Microbiology & Biotechnology
For students who are intrigued by questions like: How does life without oxygen work? How do global biogeochemical (nutrient) cycles govern the functioning of the Earth? Can we use microorganisms to create a more sustainable wastewater industry? How do microorganisms break down environmental pollutants and toxic chemicals?
You will do research at the interface between Microbiology, environmental sciences and biochemistry. The research questions cover several levels, from gaining fundamental understanding of energy metabolism of bacteria to their applications in wastewater treatment.
Societal relevance: Microbiology has the potential to replace common energy-intensive chemical processes by more sustainable solutions. Radboud University collaborates closely with environmental scientists, animal ecologists and industrial partners to create energy-efficient and environmentally friendly solutions for societal waste problems.

- Immunology
For students who are intrigued by questions like: Why do some bacteria make us ill whereas others do not? How do bacteria outsmart our immune system? What are the mechanisms of human defence against microorganisms?
You will do research at the interface between Microbiology, Immunology and Cell Biology, and can, for example, work on how microorganisms are recognised by the host defence system
Societal relevance: A better understanding of host defence will lead to the development of improved vaccines against microorganisms.

- Molecular Microbiology
For students who are intrigued by questions like: How are microorganisms able to persist inside the human body and how do they cause diseases? What does gene regulation tell us about their pathogenic capabilities? Can microbial genomes help us determine how microorganisms interact with human host cells?
You will do research at the interface between Microbiology, molecular biology and genetics, and can, for example, work on functional gene analyses by mutagenesis studies and on the interaction between epithelial cells and pathogenic bacteria.
Societal relevance: Understanding host-pathogen interactions is fundamental for the development of novel antibiotics and improvement of vaccines. Radboudumc collaborates with public health institutes – such as the RIVM (National Institute of Public Health) – and with industrial partners.

- Personal tutor
Our top scientists are looking forward to guiding you during a challenging and inspiring scientific journey. This programme offers you many opportunities to follow your own interests under the excellent supervision of a personal tutor. This allows you to specialise in a field of personal interest.

- The Nijmegen approach
The first thing you will notice as you enter our Faculty of Science is the open atmosphere. This is reflected by the light and transparent building and the open minded spirit of the people working, exploring and studying there. It is no wonder students from all over the world have been attracted to Nijmegen. You study in small groups, with direct and open contact with members of the staff. In addition, Nijmegen has excellent student facilities, such as high-tech laboratories, libraries and study ‘landscapes'.

Studying by the ‘Nijmegen approach' is a way of living. We will equip you with tools which are valuable for the rest of your life. You will be challenged to become aware of your intrinsic motivation. In other words, what is your passion in life? With this question in mind we will guide you to translate your passion into a personalised Master's in Biology.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/microbiology

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Would you like a tailor-made programme in Biology? Or do you like to design your programme at the interface of different Biology domains? Then Biology in Groningen is the Master's programme for you. Read more
Would you like a tailor-made programme in Biology? Or do you like to design your programme at the interface of different Biology domains? Then Biology in Groningen is the Master's programme for you.

Students with a broad interest in biology are able to design a tailor-made programme under the supervision of a staff member who will coach the student during the two years. Because many exciting discoveries have been made using the multidisciplinary approach, students are encouraged to combine insights and techniques from different domains within the biological sciences. Students are therefore offered the unique opportunity to combine different areas of biology - such as Ecology, Marine Biology, Biomedical Sciences and Molecular Biology - in their master's programme.

- Specialisation Behaviour and Neurosciences
In addition, the programme also offers you the possibility to specialise in a combination of two specific terrains of expertise in biology: Behaviour and Neurosciences. This specialisation focuses on the factors that affect behaviour in humans and animals. Both internal factors, such as the functioning of the brain and the excretion of hormones in the blood, as well as external factors, like growth conditions, are closely studied.

Why in Groningen?

- Possibilities for tailor-made programme
- Choose the research variant or the policy and management variant
- Specialisations: Behavioural and Neurosciences

Job perspectives

Graduates of the Master's degree programme in Biology who have chosen a scientific career often start with a PhD or join a research and development team in a company or research institute. Students who have done a society-oriented project find jobs as Science Advisors at governmental organizations, research institutions or companies.

Job examples

- PhD research position
- R&D in a company or research institute
- Science advisor

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Is your passion linked to the human system? Are you interested in the workings of the brain, or would you be the one that bridges the different understandings of fundamental biological processes and health & disease in humans? Your choice might be Medical Biology!. Read more

Passion for the human system

Is your passion linked to the human system? Are you interested in the workings of the brain, or would you be the one that bridges the different understandings of fundamental biological processes and health & disease in humans? Your choice might be Medical Biology!

Where studying Biology starts with a fascination for life, Medical Biology shares this trait and specifies it towards the human system. The Master's in Medical Biology in Nijmegen focuses strongly on molecular and cellular life processes at the cutting edge of fundamental biology and medical scientific research.

Our programme is unique because it is a combination of fundamental research and the translation of its findings into clinical applications. This is facilitated by our close cooperation with the University Medical Centre.

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

Specialisations within the Master's in Medical Biology

At the beginning of the first year, all students follow an orientation course before they choose one of the three Master's specialisations:
- Clinical Biology
- Medical Epigenomics
- Neuroscience
- Science in Society
- Science, Management and Innovation

Career prospects

This programme provides you with the qualifications you need to start working on your PhD and in the field of communication, business and management or education. Medical biologists often continue their research careers in universities, research institutes, pharmaceutical companies and public health authorities. On graduation, our students quickly take up positions as researchers or analysts in government departments, research organisations and medical or pharmaceutical companies.

What medical biologists do:
- Researchers at universities or in companies
- Supervisors of clinical trials
- Consultants
- Lecturers
- Teachers

Where medical biologists work:
- Research/education
- Health care
- Business services
- Industry
- Government
- Trade

Our approach to this field

Other Master's specialisations
The Master's programme has a strong emphasis on research, especially during the first year, but allows you to broaden your horizons towards the fields of Management, Communication and Education during the second year. This way, you have the opportunity to experience whether these specialisations might suit you when you start looking for a job. There are four Master's specialisations which you can choose from:
- Research trains students for fundamental and applied research. This specialisation is required for people pursuing a PhD position or a position in industrial or institutional research.
- Science, Management and Innovation prepares students for a management position as an academic professional. It prepares students for a career in science related business and administration and for innovation and enterprise from an academic perspective.
- Science in Society trains students in the direction of science communication, which prepares them for a career in communication research, applications and media.
- Education prepares students to become a (first degree) teacher (this variant is only available in Dutch).

Our research in this field

Experts
Education is closely linked to on-going research within the:
- Institute for Water and Wetlands Research;
- Institute of Neuroscience;
- Nijmegen Centre for Molecular Life Sciences.

Nijmegen's biologists are experts in the fields of animal physiology at system level as well as at cellular and molecular level. But they also are top researchers in the fields of human health, disease and development.

- Personal tutor
The programme offers you many opportunities to follow your own interests under the guidance of a personal tutor. Each time you start a research internship you will select a research group and be allocated a supervisor. Together you will decide which research to carry out and the specialisations and subject choices that most effectively support it. In practice you will be occupied for four days a week with your own research and one day will be devoted to lectures.

- The Nijmegen approach
The first thing you will notice as you enter our Faculty of Science is the open atmosphere. This is reflected by the light and transparent building and the open minded spirit of the working, exploring and studying people that you will meet there. No wonder students from all over the world have been attracted to Nijmegen. You study in small groups, in direct and open contact with members of the staff. In addition, Nijmegen has excellent student facilities, such as high-tech laboratories, libraries and study ‘landscapes'.

Studying by the ‘Nijmegen approach' is a way of living. We will equip you with tools which are valuable for the rest of your life. You will be challenged to become aware of your intrinsic motivation. In other words, what is your passion in life? With this question in mind we will guide you to translate your passion into a personal Master's programme.

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

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How do humans, animals and plants adapt to changing environments?. Concerns about how organisms and the environment affect each other is an issue of modern global society. Read more

Overview

How do humans, animals and plants adapt to changing environments?
Concerns about how organisms and the environment affect each other is an issue of modern global society. How humans, animals and plants adapt to their environment is the central question in Nijmegen's Master's in Biology. The mechanisms that lie underneath this adaptation are studied at all levels, ranging from the smallest living entities, such as molecules and cells to larger entities such as ecosystems, and entire populations.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/biology

Specialisations within the Master's in Biology

You can choose one of the following specialisations:
- Adaptive organisms
- Communities and Ecosystems
- Microbiology
- Water and Environment

Rich programme

This MSc. programme does not only put the interactions between organisms into context, but also integrates all levels of organisation from molecule and cell up to ecosystems and landscapes. This combination results in a rich and coherent programme of Master's courses and exciting internships with state-of-the-art research. It prepares you for a career in science, both fundamental and applied, and also provides the necessary knowledge for innovative evidence-based applications in nature and water management.

Personal tutor

Our top scientists are looking forward to guiding you on a challenging and inspiring scientific journey. This programme offers you many opportunities to follow your own interests under the guidance of a personal tutor. Radboud University offers you a multitude of research fields to choose from in close collaboration with the
- academic hospital UMCN St. Radboud;
- Institute for Water and Wetlands Research;
- Nijmegen Centre for Molecular Life Sciences;
- Donders Institute.

This allows you to specialise in a field of personal interest.

The Nijmegen approach

The first thing you will notice as you enter our Faculty of Science is the open atmosphere. This is reflected by the light and transparent building and the open minded spirit of the people working, exploring and studying there. It is no wonder students from all over the world have been attracted to Nijmegen. You study in small groups, in direct and have open contact with members of the staff. In addition, Nijmegen has excellent student facilities, such as high-tech laboratories, libraries and study ‘landscapes'.

Studying by with the ‘Nijmegen approach' is a way of living. We will equip you with tools which are valuable for the rest of your life. You will be challenged to become aware of your intrinsic motivation. In other words, what is your passion in life? With this question in mind we will guide you to translate your passion into a personalized Master's in Biology.

Quality Label

This programme was recently rated number three in the Netherlands in the Keuzegids Masters 2013 (Guide to Master's programmes) in the category Biologie (Biology).

Career prospects

This programme provides you with the qualifications you need to start working on your PhD and/or work in the field of communication, business and management or education. Biologists often continue their research careers in universities, research institutes, pharmaceutical companies and public health authorities. On graduation, our students very quickly take up positions as researchers or analysts in government departments, research organisations and medical or pharmaceutical companies.

What biologists do:
- Researchers at universities or in companies
- Supervisors of clinical trials
- Consultants
- Lecturers
- Policy coordinators
- Teachers

Where biologists work:
- Research/education
- Health care
- Business services
- Industry
- Government
- Trade

Our approach to this field

How do humans, animals and plants adapt to a changing environment?
Concerns about how organisms and the environment affect each other is an issue of modern global society. How humans, animals and plants adapt to their environment is the central question in Nijmegen's Master's in Biology. The mechanisms that lie underneath this adaptation are studied at all levels, ranging from the smallest living entities, such as molecules, cells and pollen to larger entities such as ecosystems, river courses and entire populations.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/biology

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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 Plant Biotechnology programme is the combination of different fields of the classical plant sciences (e.g. plant physiology, plant breeding, plant pathology) working with a whole new range of techniques and possibilities opened up by modern molecular biology. Read more

MSc Plant Biotechnology

The Plant Biotechnology programme is the combination of different fields of the classical plant sciences (e.g. plant physiology, plant breeding, plant pathology) working with a whole new range of techniques and possibilities opened up by modern molecular biology.

Programme summary

Due to rapid technological developments in the genomics, molecular biology and biotechnology, the use of molecular marker technology has accelerated the selection of new plant varieties with many desirable traits. It also facilitates the design, development and management of transgenic plants. At present, plants are increasingly used to produce valuable proteins and secondary metabolites for food and pharmaceutical purposes. New insights into the molecular basis of plant-insect, plant- pathogen and crop-weed relationships enable the development of disease-resistant plants and strategies for integrated pest management. A fundamental approach is combined with the development of tools and technologies to apply in plant breeding, plant pathology, post-harvest quality control, and the production of renewable resources. Besides covering the technological aspects, Plant Biotechnology also deals with the ethical issues and regulatory aspects, including intellectual property rights.

Specialisations

Functional Plant Genomics
Functional genomics aims at understanding the relationship between an organism's genome and its phenotype. The availability of a wide variety of sequenced plant genomes has revolutionised insight into plant genetics. By combining array technology, proteomics, metabolomics and phenomics with bioinformatics, gene expression can be studied to understand the dynamic properties of plants and other organisms.

Plants for Human and Animal Health
Plants are increasingly being used as a safe and inexpensive alternative for the production of valuable proteins and metabolites for food supplements and pharmaceuticals. This specialisation provides a fundamental understanding of how plants can be used for the production of foreign proteins and metabolites. In addition, biomedical aspects such as immunology and food allergy, as well as nutritional genomics and plant metabolomics, can also be studied.

Molecular Plant Breeding and Pathology
Molecular approaches to analyse and modify qualitative and quantitative traits in crops are highly effective in improving crop yield, food quality, disease resistance and abiotic stress tolerance. Molecular plant breeding focuses on the application of genomics and QTL-mapping to enable marker assisted selection of a trait of interest (e.g. productivity, quality). Molecular plant pathology aims to provide a greater understanding of plant-insect, plant-pathogen and crop-weed interactions in addition to developing new technologies for integrated plant health management.These technologies include improved molecular detection of pathogens and transgene methods to introduce resistance genes into crops.

Your future career

The main career focus of graduates in Plant Biotechnology is on research and development positions at universities, research institutes, and biotech- or plant breeding companies. Other job opportunities can be found in the fields of policy, consultancy and communication in agribusiness and both governmental and non-governmental organisations. Over 75% of Plant Biotechnology graduates start their (academic) career with a PhD.

Alumnus Behzad Rashidi.
“I obtained my bachelor degree in the field of agricultural engineering, agronomy and plant breeding, at Isfahan University of Technology, Iran. The curiosity and interest for studying plant biotechnology and great reputation of Wageningen University motivated me to follow the master programme Plant Biotechnology. I got a chance to do my internship at State University of New York at Buffalo, working on biofuel production from microalgae. Working with this small unicellular organism made me even more motivated to continue my research after my master. Now I am doing my PhD in the Plant Breeding department of Wageningen University, working on biorefinery of microalgae.”

Related programmes:
MSc Biotechnology
MSc Molecular Life Sciences
MSc Plant Sciences
MSc Nutrition and Health
MSc Bioinformatics
MSc Biology.

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*Please note that it is our intention to transform this programme into a new programme Biology of Cardiovascular Disease from September 2017 onwards. Read more
*Please note that it is our intention to transform this programme into a new programme Biology of Cardiovascular Disease from September 2017 onwards. The option to focus on areas other than cardiovascular disease then will be limited.*

The Master's in Biology of Disease focuses on the translation of disease into a scientifically secure experiment/model, in order to study its underlying mechanisms and reveal potential therapies.

The Master's programme in Biology of Disease offers the opportunity to study disease mechanisms in the broadest sense via internships in pre-clinical and clinical research in medical, biomedical, biological, industrial and veterinary labs; and to focus on more than one clinical specialty enabling you to conduct research projects on different subjects and diseases. Alternatively this programme offers the possibility to focus on cardiovascular research.

This two year research programme comprises theoretical courses, elective courses, seminars, a major and minor research project, and the writing of a Master's thesis. The core component of this two year research programme consists of independently planning and conducting the two research projects, which will take 15 months in total. The minor research project may be completed elsewhere in the Netherlands or abroad; or it may be replaced by a specific profile: Management, Teaching and Communication or Drug Regulatory Sciences. Graduates of this programme are prepared for PhD studies (approximately 65% choose for this option); or to take on a position in the medical-technical or pharmaceutical industry, or in science journalism.

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Molecular chemistry is a creative science, where chemists synthesize molecules with new biological or physical properties to address scientific or societal challenges. Read more

Chemistry: Molecular Chemistry

Molecular chemistry is a creative science, where chemists synthesize molecules with new biological or physical properties to address scientific or societal challenges. Think of new catalytic conversions, lead compounds for future medicines or the next generation of conducting polymers. The specialisation Molecular Chemistry offers education in connection with top-level research in the Institute for Molecules and Materials (IMM), enabling you to develop in-depth knowledge of the design, synthesis and characterization of unprecedented functional molecular structures.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/chemistry/molecular

Why study Molecular Chemistry at Radboud University?

- The IMM at Radboud University hosts an internationally renowned cluster of molecular chemistry groups, where you will participate in challenging research projects.
- The IMM Organic Chemistry department was recently awarded a 27 million euro NWO Gravity programme grant. Among the teaching staff are two ERC advanced grant and two ERC starting grant winners.
- Teaching takes place in small groups and in a stimulating, personal setting.

Admission requirements for international students

1. A completed Bachelor's degree in Chemistry, Science or a related area
In general, you are admitted with the equivalent of a Dutch Bachelor's degree in Chemistry, Science with relevant subjects, or a related programme in molecular science. In case of other pre-education, students must have passed preliminary examinations containing the subject matter of the following well-known international textbooks (or equivalent literature). Any deficiencies in this matter should be eliminated before you can take part in this specialisation. If you want to make sure that you meet our academic requirements, please contact the academic advisor.
- Organic chemistry: e.g. Organic Chemistry (Bruice)
- Biochemistry: e.g. Biochemistry (Lehninger)
- Physical chemistry: e.g. Physical chemistry (Atkins)
- 30 EC of chemistry or chemistry-related courses at third year Bachelor's level

2. A proficiency in English
In order to take part in this programme, you need to have fluency in both written and spoken English. Non-native speakers of English* without a Dutch Bachelor's degree or VWO diploma need one of the following:
- A TOEFL score of >575 (paper based) or >90 (internet based)
- An IELTS score of ≥6.5
- Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) or Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) with a mark of C or higher

Career prospects

Approximately 40% of our graduates take up a PhD position, either in Nijmegen or elsewhere in the world. Our research institutes, in particular the Institute for Molecules and Materials, have vacancies for PhD projects every year. Our graduates also find work as researchers and managers in the chemical industry, or in one of our spin-off companies. A small proportion will not work in science, but for instance as a policymaker at a governmental organisation.

Our approach to this field

The Master's specialisation in Molecular Chemistry offers main stream chemistry courses and research topics, for those students that aim to deepen their knowledge and experimental skills in the heart of chemistry. The Institute for Molecules and Materials offers a state-of-the-art research infrastructure and hosts world-class research groups where you can conduct independent research, under the personal guidance of a researcher. Often, this leads to a scientific publication with you as a co-author.

Besides an internship in fundamental science, you can also chose to perform research in an industrial environment. Approximately one third of our students do one of their internships in a chemical company, both large (e.g. DSM, Synthon, AkzoNobel) and small (e.g. MercaChem, FutureChemistry, Chiralix).

Interested in going abroad? Contact one of our researchers, they can easily connect you to top groups elsewhere in the world. In the past few years, molecular chemistry students did internships in Oxford (UK), Princeton (US), Berkeley (US), Karolinska Institute (Sweden), ETH Zurich (Switzerland), etc.

Our research in this field

In the Master's specialisation Molecular Chemistry, the unique research facilities that Radboud University has to offer are coupled with the top level research within the Institute for Molecules and Materials (IMM). A selection of research groups for this specialisation are:
- Synthetic organic chemistry (Prof. Floris Rutjes): The group focuses on the development of new and sustainable synthetic (multistep)reactions by using bio-, organo- or metal-catalysts or combinations thereof, synthesis of druglike compound libraries, synthesis of bio-orthogonal click-reactions and chemical synthesis in continuous flow microreactors

- Analytical chemistry (Prof. Lutgarde Buydens): Research involves new chemometric methodologies and techniques for the optimisation of molecular structures. The research programme is designed around four areas: Methodological chemometrics, spectroscopic image analysis, molecular chemometrics, and analysis of genomics, metabolomics and proteomics data.

- Bio-organic chemistry (Prof. Jan van Hest): This groups uses Nature as inspiration for the design of functional molecules. Research lines that fit in this specialisation include: design and synthesis of modified peptides to alter their biological function, hybrid polymers containing biomolecules for use as antibacterial materials, and smart compartmentalisation strategies to enable multi-step reactions in a single reaction flask.

- Molecular materials (Prof. Alan Rowan): The aim of the group is the design and synthesis of novel polymers, self-organising molecules and ordered crystals and the subsequent investigation of their properties. Research topics related to his specialisation are: functional systems for application in catalysis, new OLEDS (organic LEDS), and liquid crystals.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/chemistry/molecular

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