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Mechanics of Life Leverhulme Doctoral Scholarship Programme

About the Mechanics of Life Leverhulme Doctoral Scholarship Programme

There is rapidly mounting evidence that mechanical force impacts a large variety of biological functions including motility, differentiation, infection, and gene expression. Yet, the role of physical perturbations such as force in regulating human physiology is poorly understood. The Leverhulme Doctoral Scholarship Programme 'Mechanics of Life' aims to train future research leaders to develop new techniques, methodologies and analytical tools required to resolve outstanding challenges underpinning Mechanobiology across a broad range of biological themes. 

The programme builds upon current research and supervisory strengths at King’s College London, encompassing three faculties and eight Departments, and is a hub of postgraduate training in Mechanobiology in the UK. Through a 3.5-year PhD project and intensive training through a mechanobiology bootcamp in Year 1, dedicated workshops and seminar series, and possibilities to carry out international research placements in partner institutions, students will be trained to work confidently and seamlessly across the Physical Sciences-Biology interface to revolutionise the life sciences with breakthrough understanding, disruptive technologies and ambitious innovation.

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Who is it for?

Interested in unlocking the complexity and challenges of mechanobiology?

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Projects

Find out more about a range of available projects.

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Training

The programme organises regular seminars and masterclasses to support students.

Who is it for?

The Leverhulme Doctoral Scholarship Programme ‘Understanding the Mechanics of Life' is aimed at students with a degree either in the physical sciences (i.e. physicists, chemists, mathematicians, materials scientists, engineers, computer scientists) or in the biological sciences (i.e. biologists, biochemists, physicians) who show a deep interest in unlocking the complexity and challenges of mechanobiology.

We are interested in recruiting an academically excellent cohort, with complementary skills, curiosity, creativity, and aptitude to enthusiastically respond to challenging problems.

Projects

Visit the Mechanics of Life Leverhulme DSP project page to view projects available to students starting in October 2022.

Students who join the programme will spend the first several weeks at King’s talking to potential supervisors, meeting with research groups, and touring research facilities before selecting a PhD project. Students will have an academic advisor to help them make informed project selections.

Each student will train in more than one specific discipline in their individual projects, and will be supported by two academic supervisors with complementary expertise.  

Application guidance 

Before applying, please read the following document carefully. Please note that applications that do not follow the steps in the application guidance document will not be considered.

We are no longer accepting applications for 2022 entry

Each year, the DSP has several recruitment rounds. It is recommended that you apply as early as possible as spaces may be filled up in the first round. 

The usual recruitment round deadlines are in January, March and May

You can find out more information about entry requirements and fees and funding on the Mechanics of Life course page. This is also where you will find a link to King's Apply to submit your application. 

Doctoral Scholarship training 

The programme organises a regular seminar called Force Talks with world leaders in Mechanobiology, as well as Masterclasses in Mechanobiology with academics from King's. In these classes students are shown techniques that they will be able utilise in their lab work.

The Centre for Doctoral Studies offers:

  • Doctoral Essentials: a series of training courses aimed at helping students immerse into the PhD lifestyle, with each course focusing on a particular aspect of the PhD process
  • Career & Employability: do you know what will be your next step after your PhD? This series of training sessions will give you plenty of tips to prepare your future transition beyond the PhD
  • Personal Effectiveness: would you like to learn about being calm and working effectively under pressure? This series will prepare you to cope with those critical moments of your PhD work

Find out more on the  Centre for Doctoral Studies website.

The Health Sciences Doctoral Training Centre offers: 

  • Molecular Basis of Disease: this theme concentrates on increasing our understanding of the basis of human disease
  • Imaging, Computational and Technological Approaches to Health: this theme explores research areas including clinical and molecular imaging, computational modelling, “big data” research and high throughput technologies

Find out more on the Health Sciences Doctoral Training Centre website.

 

 

Contact us

For all general enquiries

 

Find out more

 

Management team

  • Professor Sergi Garcia-Manyes, Director
  • Dr Katelyn Spillane, Co-Director
  • Professor Juan Martin-Serrano
  • Professor Jody Rosenblatt
  • Professor Malcolm Irving

 

Force Talks

Force Talks is a new seminar series hosted at King's College London. Hosted by the Leverhulme Mechanics of Life DSP, the talks welcome world leaders in mechanobiology.

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Mechanobiology Masterclasses

Experts from King's College London regularly present masterclasses on mechanobiology techniques for the DSP cohort. In this video, Dr Eileen Gentleman from the Centre for Craniofacial & Regenerative Biology delivers a masterclass entitled 'The impact of intrinsic mechanical cues on stem cells'.

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