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The University of Southampton
Institute for Life Sciences

Major funding for new Doctoral Training Partnership in translational immunology

Published: 2 November 2015
Student programmes

The Deputy Director of the University of Southampton’s Institute for Life Sciences (IfLS) will be leading a new Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP), in collaboration with Queen Mary University of London (QMUL), that has been awarded Medical Research Council (MRC) funding in excess of £1.4m.

Professor Tim Elliott will be the Director of the four-year DTP across the two institutions that will see the MRC fund five students per year for three years. A further four students will be funded by the IfLS, the University of Southampton and QMUL.

Southampton and QMUL bid against strong competition from other organisations around the UK to secure the funding for the new DTP in Translational Immunology – research that uses knowledge of the immune system to translate laboratory discoveries into new therapies to improve health, well-being and quality of life

The DTP builds on a previous robust scientific partnership between Southampton and QMUL in collaborative research in cancer inflammation and cancer immunology.

Tim said: “The MRC identified three areas of skills gaps – quantitative biology, interdisciplinary skills and in vivo skills – and at the IfLS and QMUL we have key strengths in these areas so we decided to bid for the DTP together.

“Our new DTP is based on the integrated four-year PhD programme that I launched at Southampton a decade ago. We have previously had interim funding but this is the first major grant we have secured to support it. I am absolutely over the moon that the MRC have recognised the quality of the programme and have committed to funding it for the next three years.

“The new collaboration with QMUL will see us sharing expertise and good practice to deliver a programme that will improve training in quantitative biology and interdisciplinary skills.”

Students on the Southampton/QMUL DTP can gain an MRes after their first year before embarking on a three-year PhD. They will be based at one of the two institutions but will have the option to travel to the other organisation for specific modules. They will also have the chance to do one of their rotations at Southampton’s Wessex Investigational Sciences Hub (WISH) lab that develops immunological tests and profiling for early phase clinical trials.

The programme is due to welcome its first students in October 2016.


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