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Scotland has a long tradition of excellence in clinical research and significant recent investment in the new science of Stratified Medicine makes it the ideal place to acquire the skills required for a successful career in 21st century biomedicine.
This programme is studied on campus.
Stratified Medicine aims to improve therapies for patients such that the drug treatments will be individualised for each patient thus improving his/her likelihood of the best response. This approach has huge potential to enhance therapies and the timely development of new treatments for human disease. It is one of the most important concepts in 21st century clinical science and is a crucial component of the global drive to increase the efficacy, safety and cost effectiveness of new medicines.
This taught postgraduate Masters programme harnesses Scotland's strengths in Stratified Medicine, Clinical Trials, Bioinformatics and Pharmacogenomics and draws on the current and future needs of the Life Sciences sector. It has been developed in conjunction with the industrial partners of the Stratified Medicine Scotland Innovation Centre (SMS-IC).
Throughout, this programme will integrate basic and clinical sciences. You will benefit from focused training and will graduate better equipped to design, execute and evaluate modern clinical interventions.
This specially funded programme is open to Scottish/EU citizens. Prestigious Scottish Funding Council Awards are available to high calibre applicants for this programme. The awards cover all tuition costs and all you need to do is apply in order to be considered.
The MSc Stratified Medicine & Pharmacological Innovation is a unique postgraduate degree, offered jointly by the University of Aberdeen, University of Glasgow and University of Strathclyde. Students choose to study on campus at either the University of Aberdeen or University of Glasgow.
The course will focus
on small molecule drug discovery.
Receptor theory and cell communication and signalling will be revised to
facilitate understanding of the remainder of the course. The basis of the drug
discovery process will be described and the phases of drug development discussed. A range of targets for drug discovery will be
identified and how small molecule drug affect these will be described. Issues around drug regulation will be raised.
This course will describe the basic language of business and give examples of large versus small businesses in the bioscience area. Intellectual property rights will be explained as will how present your business and how to set up a small biotech company. A comparison will be made of the big Pharma business model and that of small biotech businesses.
Biologic therapies represent one of the most important and novel areas of drug discovery in the 21st century. The aim of this course is to provide an insight into the success of protein, peptide or antibody based biologic therapies and to examine how this exciting new area will develop over the next decade.
This advanced course builds
on the basics provided in Introduction to Bio-business
and the Commercialisation of Bioscience Research (BT5012). It provides more detail on financing and
setting up a Bio-business.
The course deals in depth with finance,
corporate governance and business models. The major assessment involves the students working together in teams to
set up a virtual bio-business and to pitch this business to a group of experts
in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sector. The team will adopt the roles of senior
management team and present to the experts their part of the business.
In the final semester students undertake a research project which will account for the remaining 60 course credits. All projects will either have an industrial placement or a project which addresses an industrial need.
We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.
How You'll Study
You will be offered a choice of base institution, either Aberdeen or Glasgow. In addition, you will participate in modules/courses provided by the Universities of Dundee and Strathclyde.
Tuition comprises core modules/courses (60 credits) and a series of optional modules/courses (60 credits) which enable participating students to personalise their degree better to align it with their future career aspirations. Students will also be offered a choice of project, which will afford them the opportunity to gain employability skills and to apply their new knowledge in a commercial or academic context. Further flexibility will be provided through a choice of host institution for some modules, and distance learning options for others.
The project accounts for 60 credits. All projects will either have an industrial placement or a project which addresses an industrial need.
The programme will include an opportunity for all students to present the outcomes of their projects to an audience of other students, academics and industry representatives. Assessment will consist of submission of a Dissertation and oral presentation.
Why Study Stratified Medicine and Pharmacological Innovation?
Stratified Medicine is highly topical. There is high demand for graduates with this qualification and skills and you will be ideally place to pursue a career in the commercial or academic life sciences upon graduation.
You will be given the unique opportunity to undertake an industry linked placement as your main project. This fantastic opportunity will be offered by partner commercial organisations/companies and universities.
The programme will cover aspects of commercial innovation and entrepreneurial skills, together with the principles which underpin the emerging science at the interface between genetics and pharmacology.
You will undergo theoretical and practical training in state-of-the-art research processes, enabling an appreciation of how to apply novel stratified approaches, together with clinical pharmacological, regulatory and ethical principles to the optimisation of future clinical research and therapeutic practice.
You will gain an understanding of statistical methods used to evaluate the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of new treatments, and direct experience of how all of these techniques are applied by academic and industrial researchers in the development of new medicines.
The five universities, Aberdeen, Glasgow, Strathclyde, Dundee and Edinburgh are internationally recognised as leaders in biomedical research, hosting highly collaborative and productive groups with the requisite expertise in pharmacology, clinical trial methodology, pharmacogenomics, and life sciences.
The British Pharmacological Society has recognised the University of Aberdeen as a site of special scientific interest based on its achievements in pharmacology.
The University has the rare distinction of having two British Pharmacological Society Wellcome Gold Medal winners on staff.
Applications should be accompanied by a personal statement, highlighting career goals and how this programme will help to achieve them.
The information below is provided as a guide only and does not guarantee entry to the University of Aberdeen.
Candidates must normally possess:
At least a second class honours degree in Life Science or Pharmacy/Pharmacology from a university in the United Kingdom; or
A qualification deemed by the Joint Management Committee to be equivalent to the above; and/or
Professional or industrial experience deemed appropriate by the Joint Management
Please enter your country to view country-specific entry requirements.
English Language Requirements
To study for a Postgraduate Taught degree at the University of Aberdeen it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write English fluently. The minimum requirements for this degree are as follows:
In exceptional circumstances there may be additional fees associated with specialist courses, for example field trips. Any additional fees for a course can be found in our Catalogue of Courses.
For more information about tuition fees for this programme, including payment plans and our refund policy, please visit our InfoHub Tuition Fees page.
Scottish Funding Council Awards
Scottish Funding Council Awards are available to high calibre applicants for this programme. The SFC has selected this programme in recognition of the high demand for students with these qualifications.
Financial Assistance for Travel and Accommodation
Students will receive financial assistance for travel between the partner Universities and assistance with accommodation costs.
University of Aberdeen Alumni Discount Scheme
The University of Aberdeen is very pleased to offer a 20% discount on postgraduate tuition fees for all alumni. Further information can be found on our Finance and Funding pages.
Upon graduation you will be able to pursue a career in a variety of academic and commercial sectors including clinical research, preclinical lab-based research, business development with expert knowledge in life sciences and Bioinformatics/biostatistics.
"As a small biotech company having excellent staff is paramount to our success. Scotia Biologics is based within the Aberdeen University Medical Institute campus and as such has the added bonus of being able to take on Masters students for their 10 week placement. I have been amazed at the level of competence displayed by the students on the Stratified Medicine and Pharmacological Innovation taught MSc programme. As a result, we offered two of these students full time employment in our company when they completed their MSc"
Dr Gill Broadbent Chief Operations Officer Scotia Biologics Ltd.
“Cell ProTx Ltd. was able to provide a significant learning experience in the areas of free radical biology and medicine, redox chemistry and drug development as well as the operations of an SME Life Sciences company. Students provided significant benefit to the company by undertaking literature reviews and initial proof-of-concept studies in areas of research, additional to our core programme, which we could not otherwise have done. “All of the candidates were of very high calibre and integrated well with other members of staff becoming part of our team for the duration of their placements. One of the students successfully secured an industrial PhD position following his time with us. “I very much hope that the SMPI course will continue to thrive as it provides a unique foundation for students to progress into the Life Sciences sector.”
Professor Wallace is a fully registered European Toxicologist. Her research area is cancer biology and therapies and novel methods of drug delivery. She works with regulatory agencies in the UK & Europe and is editor-in-chief of Toxicology Research.
Information About Staff Changes
You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.
Top 10 for Spin-Out Companies
We are one of the top 10 UK Universities for spin-out company formation.
Stratified Medicine Scotland - Innovation Centre
The SMS-IC is a world-class centre for providing commercial delivery of stratified medicine capabilities. SMS-IC is based at the newly opened Queen Elizabeth University Hospital (QEUH) in Glasgow.
The Institute of Medical Sciences
Focused on developing future effective therapies, the Institute of Medical Sciences houses nearly 400 researchers and support staff working on cutting-edge biomedical subjects aimed at understanding the human body's response to infection and disease.
Foresterhill Health Campus
The Foresterhill Health Campus is one of the largest clinical complexes in Europe which includes the Medical School, large teaching hospital, the Institute of Medical Sciences and the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health.