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Genetics and Molecular Medicine PhD

Key information

Qualification type

PhD/DPhil - Doctor of Philosophy

Subject areas

Genetics Medical Specialisations: F-O

Course type


Course Summary


The Division consists of four Departments, all of which focus on investigation of the molecular basis of human disease, and how such knowledge can be applied to improved diagnosis and therapy.As an indication of the quality of our research programme, of the four KCL researchers named in the 2014 global list of the most highly cited researchers, 3 are members of the Division. This prestigious list, published by Thompson Reuters, recognises ‘the best and brightest scientific minds of our time’, by determining which researchers have produced work that is most frequently acknowledged by their peers. Tim Spector, Professor of Genetic Epidemiology, Christopher Mathew, Professor of Molecular Genetics, and Tim Hubbard, Professor of Bioinformatics, are included in the list which identifies them as being among the world’s leading and most influential experts in their respective fields.

The Department of Medical & Molecular Genetics aims to identify genes, their functions, and variants, implicated in both Mendelian and complex common disorders, with a strong emphasis on translational medicine. Current studies use new-generation high-throughput DNA sequencing and genotyping technology to identify genetic variants associated with common inflammatory disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease, psoriasis and systemic lupus erythematosus, and to find causal mutations in a range of rare and severe genetic syndromes.

There is also a strong cancer genetics group studying the molecular origins of breast cancer, leukaemia and oesophageal cancer. Further substantial research programmes exist in neurogenetics, including basic and translational aspects of Huntington's disease, while other work explores epigenetic effects such as imprinting, the control of gene expression, and epistatic interactions between genes. Several research groups are involved in development of statistical approaches to whole genome association studies and the integration of emerging biological databases with genomic studies. The Department has close links with our NHS Department of Clinical Genetics and its associated diagnostic laboratories, which provide genetic services to a large patient base in the south-east of England.

The Department has state-of-the-art laboratories and equipment, including a core Genomics facility, which, in partnership with our Biomedical Research Centre, houses next-generation DNA sequencers and microarray facilities for high-throughput DNA sequencing, genotyping and analysis of gene expression. There is also a substantial computing infrastructure for bioinformatics, and an imaging laboratory for confocal and laser dissection microscopy.

The research strategy of St John's Institute of Dermatology seeks to improve the diagnosis and management of severe skin diseases through a better understanding of the basic pathogenetic mechanisms that cause and sustain these conditions. It targets four key areas: cutaneous oncology, genetic skin disorders, inflammatory and autoimmune skin disorders, and photomedicine. Research methods extend from molecular genetic analysis to therapeutic intervention studies. Work in progress embraces both collaborations within King's College London and external collaborations world-wide.

Different course options

Full time | St Thomas' Campus | 3 years | OCT-19

Study mode

Full time


3 years

Start date


Tuition fees

UK fees
Course fees for UK / EU students

For this course (per year)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


International fees
Course fees for non-UK / EU students

For this course (per year)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


Entry requirements

Bachelor's degree with 2:1 honours in a relevant subject. A 2:2 degree may be considered only where applicants also offer a Masters degree with Merit or above.