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PhD Programme in Translational Research in Advanced Cell & Gene Therapies

About the Programme

Our multidisciplinary PhD programme aims to train the next generation of translational scientists in advanced cell and gene therapies by stimulating interactions between clinical and non-clinical scientific experts. These individuals will become future key opinion leaders, innovators and entrepreneurs in the field of Advanced Therapies.

King’s is a world leader in the field of Advanced Therapies with this area one of its key pillars and unique strengths. King’s hosts our dedicated Gene Therapy Innovation Hub that complements an Advanced Therapies Accelerator for pre-clinical development.

The programme is developed around six main clinical focus areas: Cardiovascular, Metabolic, Immune-Mediated Inflammatory Diseases, Cancer, Neurological and Genetic Disorders. It also incorporates cross-cutting disciplines such as health data science, artificial intelligence, imaging and bioengineering.



We use a combination of regular in-person interactions and blended learning to maximise the training and mentorship resources available. Every student will attend Fundamental Research Training to deepen their knowledge of Advanced Therapies and take part in a Bespoke Training Programme tailored to their interests and career aspirations. During the PhD, successful applicants will be able to interact with our Industry Partners through masterclasses, visits and placement options. Furthermore, students will be embedded in the UK Advanced Therapy Network. In addition, we have partnered with University College London and the University of Manchester to allow our students access to bespoke courses in Advanced Therapies offered by these two institutions.

Leadership & Supervisors

The Programme is Directed by Professor Bijan Modarai.

The Leadership Team consists of:

We have a diverse, enthusiastic, intergenerational group of 88 basic scientists and clinical supervisors engaging the breadth of expertise at King's relevant to advance therapies.

Our supervisors support a positive and inclusive research culture, have zero tolerance for bullying and harassment, and are committed to fairness. See the complete list of supervisors in the link in the right hand column.


Students will access King's world-class resources

Students enrolled in this Programme will join a vibrant research environment, and will interact with fellows from the Wellcome Trust PhD Programme in Advanced Therapies for Regenerative Medicine, MRC Doctoral training Programme, BHF Centre and UK Dementia Research Institute.

Students will join King's College London and have access to a vast range of resources, including:

  • State-of-the-art laboratories and access to cutting-edge equipment supporting genetics, molecular and cellular biology, induced pluripotent stem cells, animal models of disease, high-throughput screening and high content imaging, multimodality in vivo imaging, proteomics, integrative physiology and viral & non-viral vector production.
  • Expertise in data science, including computer science and AI, bio- and clinical informatics, and statistics.
  • Facilities at the MRC/LifeArc funded Gene Therapy Innovation Hub and Research England-funded Advanced Therapies Accelerator for pre-clinical development.
  • King's Health Partners (KHP) is an Academic Health Science Centre where world-class research, education and clinical practice are brought together for the benefit of patients. KHP comprises King's College London and three of London's largest hospital trusts, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust and King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

2023 Cohort and Projects

Thomas Dolphin
“Optimising adeno associated virus (AAV) gene therapy vector production through the study of component production assembly and virion excretion mechanisms”
Supervisors Ali and Pearson.

Sofia Fredin
“Investigating the links between axonal degeneration mechanisms and early pathological phenotypes in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis using a bioengineered human stem cell platform”
Supervisors Serio and Sreedharan.

Sofia Marina Konstantinidou
“Pre-clinical development of a modified U7 small nuclear ribonucleoprotein to target sense and antisense repeat expansions in C9ORF72-ALS/FTD”
Supervisors Ruepp and Mizielinska.

Yan Lau
“Antigen Processing and Presentation in Cancers”
Supervisors Irshad and Josephs.

Victoria Richardson
“Human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived Genome Engineered Macrophages (GEMS) as novel cell therapy agents”
Supervisors Mukhopadhyay and Dasgupta.

Emma Salmela
“Exploration of drug-inducible riboswitches to regulate AAV-delivered transgene expression”
Supervisors Shaw and Ruepp.

Drenusha Sejdiu
“Transcriptional signature of replicating cardiomyocytes during cardiac regeneration”
Supervisors Giacca and Mano.


Applications for October 2025 entry will open in autumn 2024 (date tbc).
Applying to this programme is a two-stage process.

Stage One consists of completing an online application form to inform us of your qualifications and relevant experience, your motivation for applying and your future career plans.

The applications will be reviewed, and successful candidates will be invited to panel interviews in Stage Two. Applicants who are offered an interview will be invited to submit an application via King’s Apply where final checks on academic qualifications, English language requirements and fee status will be made. Completing this process is required for applicants to be awarded a studentship.

Please direct all programme enquires to


The programme welcomes applications from a diverse range of backgrounds. Applicants will be reviewed on qualifications, experience and potential to undertake a research degree.

  • 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 a Merit or above
  • If English is not your first language you will be required to provide evidence that you meet the minimum English requirements of the Faculty. More details on the minimum English requirements can be found on our website.

Cohort 2024

Applications are now CLOSED for Cohort 2024.

Stage one online application form

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