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Medical Biotechnology (MSc)

Course Description

Develop your understanding of key concepts and practices in the biotechnologies that drive new product innovation as well as the business principles underlying commercialisation of biomedical research.

This course is designed to enhance your career in the medical or pharmaceutical biotechnology sectors in a variety of research, product and technology development and leadership roles.

Medical Biotechnology will equip you with broad theoretical knowledge and critical understanding of advanced principles in biotechnology. You'll also gain the practical skills required to underpin a career within a business or research environment.

This is a part-time course, starting in September or January, with flexibility in the number of taught modules taken in each trimester.

See the website http://www.napier.ac.uk/en/Courses/MSc-Medical-Biotechnology-Postgraduate-FullTime

What you'll learn

This course provides detailed knowledge of key concepts in cell technology, bioprocessing and molecular analysis and how these approaches are applied in areas of specific relevance to medical and pharmaceutical applications such as drug design and discovery, immunology and microbial infection.

You’ll explore and critically evaluate the technologies driving discovery and modification of natural compounds for use in medicine; the relationship between progress in our understanding of disease and the development of diagnostics and treatments; as well as the application of theoretical concepts to the use of biological systems for production of drugs.

Business and entrepreneurship are also a core feature of this programme. You’ll address themes that influence the success of any biotechnology venture such as intellectual property, bioethics, sustainability and public perception through the development of a novel business concept.

There is an emphasis on developing your practical laboratory skills with various opportunities for hands-on experience in a range of current techniques and practices such as mammalian cell culture and fermentation. In your final trimester you’ll undertake an independent project within a vibrant research team, allowing you to apply and further develop your technical, research and professional skills. There may be the opportunity to conduct your research project externally in a relevant organisation or bio-industry.

You’ll also develop key skills including communication, problem solving, team work, project management, and leadership. You’ll learn through interactive lectures, workshops, tutorials, site visits and laboratory sessions, and by engaging with guided independent study. A variety of assessment tools are used to enhance and evaluate your learning.

This is a full-time course over one year and is split up into three trimesters. You can choose to start in either January or September. There may also be some opportunities to study abroad.

This programme is also available as a Masters by Research.

Subjects include:
- Cell technology
- Business and bioethics
- Research skills
- Biotechnology and drug discovery
- Molecular pathogenesis of microbial infection
- Research project

One optional module from:
- Advanced immunology
- Current practice in drug development
- Molecular pharmacology and toxicology

Study modules mentioned above are indicative only. Some changes may occur between now and the time that you study.


Within the life sciences, biotechnology is the most rapidly growing sector and it is predicted that the global expansion in this field will be a key driver in the world economy.

This programme provides opportunities for laboratory-based or research management and product development work in a variety of industries ranging from multi-national companies to smaller biotechnology enterprises in the medical, pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and biochemical sectors.

Opportunities may also exist in contract research companies and service providers to the biotechnology sector, in addition to research institutes and local government.

Successful completion of the MSc programme provides a sound platform for further study in a research setting; graduates will be qualified to continue to PhD studies in the bio-molecular sciences.

Visit the Medical Biotechnology (MSc) page on the Edinburgh Napier University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

The entry requirements for this course is a Bachelor (Honours) Degree at a 2:2 or above. We look for applicants to have a background in bio-molecular sciences such as: biotechnology, molecular biology, genetics, biochemistry and biomedical sciences. We may consider degree equivalent or lesser qualifications if you have sufficient relevant work experience gained in biotechnology related industries and research laboratories. If English is not your first language, it is usually required that you sit an English language test in order to gain entry onto our postgraduate programmes.

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