researchers look at results

Key information

Application deadline:
28 January 2018

Interviews will be held in February 2018

Dr Graeme Birdsey
Professor Anna Randi
Professor Jorge Ferrer

British Heart Foundation - Imperial Centre for Translational and Experimental Medicine (ICTEM) 4-year MRes/PhD Studentship, Imperial College London



Project title: Characterization of endothelial enhancer clusters and their role in disease-associated SNPs.

Supervisors: Dr Graeme Birdsey (, Professor Anna Randi (, Professor Jorge Ferrer (

Applications are invited for a British Heart Foundation (BHF) 4 year MRes/PhD studentship starting in October 2018 at the Imperial Centre for Translational and Experimental Medicine (ICTEM), Hammersmith Campus. The studentships are fully funded through a BHF training grant made to Professor Sian Harding and it will cover tuition fees (at the Home/EU rate) and a tax-free stipend starting from £22,278 per annum for a total of 4 years. In addition, there is a consumable allowance of £50,000 and £1000 travel award per studentship.

This project brings together groups working in the Vascular Sciences Section of the National Heart and Lung Institute and the Section of Epigenomics and Disease in the Department of Medicine, both of which are located in new state-of-the art Imperial College Centre for Translational and Experimental Medicine at the Hammersmith Campus. The collaboration between our three groups brings together expertise in cardiovascular biology, endothelial cell function and advanced genomics and provides an excellent platform for carrying out the project.

Imperial College London provides excellent opportunities for research student training. All students benefit from a full programme of training in research and transferable skills organised through the Graduate School, the quality of which has been recognised several times at the Times Higher Education (THE) Awards.

Project summary 

The BHF 4-year MRes/PhD studentships at ICTEM typically comprises a 1-year MRes in Biomedical Research, followed by a 3-year PhD. During the MRes year, students undertake two laboratory projects which will prepare them for the PhD.

The overall aim of the project is to investigate the unexplored role of endothelial super-enhancers in the analysis of cardiovascular disease-associated traits. The MRes projects will examine the role of the transcription factor ERG in controlling the endothelial epigenetic landscape and aim to identify disease-associated SNPs mapping to active endothelial enhancers. The direction of the PhD work will be informed by the outcome of the MRes studies. The project will involve a broad range of techniques and approaches, including training in bioinformatic computational methods to investigate large datasets for both genetic and genomic studies. Training will be provided in biochemical/molecular biology techniques, cell biology and immunohistochemical techniques with confocal microscopy. These skills will be brought together in the PhD project.

The successful candidate will be based in the Birdsey, Randi and Ferrer groups at the Hammersmith Campus for a period of their study. They will also join a cohort of PhD students affiliated with the BHF Centres at Imperial, with particular interests in regenerative medicine and novel technologies. They will also link to the wider Imperial College through activities such as the Imperial Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Network.

Applicant Requirements

Applicants must hold, or expect to obtain, a first or upper second-class honours degree or equivalent in an appropriate subject from a recognised academic institution. The candidate will require previous training in a Unix environment, a programming language, and statistical analysis tools such as R. Evidence of previous research experience in biochemistry, cell biology and/or molecular biology at an academic or industrial research organisation would be desirable. Candidates must fulfil College admissions criteria and meet BHF residency requirements.

How to Apply 

To apply, please email Jinata Subba ( with the following documents.

  • Your CV
  • The names and addresses of at least two academic referees
  • A personal statement of no more than 1,000 words explaining your interest in the project 

Please assume that your application has not been successful if you have not heard from us within a month of the closing date.

Closing date for all applications: Sunday 28 January 2018 

Interviews will be held in February 2018