University of Cambridge International PhD Programme in Molecular Biology


The Laboratory of Molecular Biology (LMB), University of Cambridge is one of the birthplaces of modern molecular biology and it continues to be a prolific source of new ideas, discoveries and inventions. To date, the LMB’s scientists have earned twelve Nobel Prizes, as well as numerous other prestigious scientific awards. Every year the LMB International PhD Programme offers 20-30 new graduate students from the UK and all over the world the opportunity to engage in cutting-edge research.

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October 2020 entrance:
The PhD projects available for studies leading to a University of Cambridge PhD degree commencing 1 October 2020 are listed below.

  1. Radu Aricescu: Supra-molecular architecture of synaptic receptors
  2. David Barford: Structure of yeast chromosome segregation
  3. John Briggs: Structural Biology of HIV-1 assembly
  4. Andrew Carter: Viral transport by the dynein/dynactin motor and Building a minimal contractile machine
  5. Jason Chin: Encoded cellular synthesis of non-natural polymers
  6. Gerry Crossan: Developmental origin of germ cell tumours
  7. Benjamin Falcon: Selective cell vulnerability in neurodegenerative disease
  8. Julian Gough: Systematic Cell Reprogramming and Personal genomics
  9. Ingo Greger: Role of glutamate receptor dynamics in synaptic plasticity
  10. Ramanujan Hegde: Membrane protein biogenesis and quality control
  11. Philipp Holliger: Synthetic Genetics
  12. Gregory Jefferis: Neural Circuits for Sex and Memory in the Fly
  13. Jan Löwe: Structure and function of the Divisome
  14. Kate McDole: How the embryo gets its shape: mechanobiology meets development
  15. Harvey McMahon: The molecular origins of Parkinson’s Disease
  16. Garib Murshudov: Statistics and machine learning for map interpretation
  17. Kelly Nguyen:Molecular mechanism of telomere maintenance
  18. Lori Passmore: Mechanisms of molecular machines
  19. Felix Randow: How cells attack bacteria invading their cytosol
  20. Jing Ren: Developmental assembly of the serotonin system
  21. Katja Röper: Kidneys in a dish
  22. Christopher Russo: Studying the physics of cryo-EM to design and build new microscopes for biology
  23. Julian Sale: How structured DNA drives epigenetic variation
  24. William Schafer: Probing the structure and function of neural connectomes
  25. Marta Shahbazi: Pluripotent stem cell fate decisions in a 3D context
  26. John Sutherland: How did translation arise?
  27. Rebecca Taylor: Investigating transmissible protein aggregates in C. elegans
  28. Marco Tripodi: From cognition to action
  29. Roger Williams: Feast, famine and repair
  30. Joseph Yeeles: Building the replisome

The LMB, University of Cambridge welcomes applications from highly qualified students of all nationalities.


  • At least a 2i honours degree or an equivalent standard from an overseas university (e.g. CGPA 3.5/4.0) in a relevant subject. For more information please refer to the University of Cambridge page.
  • Two outstanding academic references, preferably one from senior university staff at your most recent university and one from a senior scientist who has supervised your practical research. Again for more information please refer to the University of Cambridge page.
  • Fluency in the English language – if English is not your first language we require a recent language test equivalent to the IELTS (International English Language Testing System) and scores equivalent to at least 7.0 overall with not less than 7.0 in speaking, listening and writing, and 6.5 in reading. Please use this link to determine if you need to complete a language test and to check witch tests are acceptable by the University.

Key dates for applicants:

2nd September 2019: Applications open
9th October 2019: US Gates Scholarship applications close
3rd December 2019: General applications (UK, EU and overseas applicants) close
3rd December 2019: Deadline for receipt of supporting documents and references (for general applications)
Week commencing 9th December 2019: Interview shortlisting
Week commencing 16th December 2019: Shortlisted candidates invited to interview
23rd December 2019 – 3rd January 2020: LMB Postgraduate Office Christmas closure
13th – 17th January 2020: LMB Recruitment Days
10th February 2020: Successful applicants notified

official website

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Other opportunities

Marie-Sklodowska-Curie funded 15 PhD positions (ETN ‘4D-REEF’)

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Funded 15 PhD Positions (Project InnovEOX)

Marie Skłodowska-Curie funded 15 PhD positions (TranSYS)

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