Warwick University has been awarded £5 Million for a new Life-Sciences Doctoral Training Centre which will educate a new breed of scientists.
The funding from EPSRC (Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council) will provide for 50 student doctoral projects on a new multidisciplinary programme that will produce a new generation of life science researchers armed with an in depth understanding of how mathematics and computer technology can advance their research.
Scientists at the centre will be able to use the latest technology to investigate data about molecules and cells in order to answer difficult questions about biological function. The highly specific skills required to carry out such investigations are in short supply, and the new centre will enable these scientists to make sense of complex computer data sets tied to gene mapping.
Dr Alison Rodger, from the Department of Chemistry, said: "Research in Life Sciences is an area of scientific research that has changed radically in recent years following the sequencing of the human and other important genomes. This multi-disciplinary project is set to break new ground in the analysis of biological or molecular data. UK industry needs a strong research and technical base. Students who complete this new PhD, with their developed computer literacy, numeric and technical skills, will be extremely attractive employees."
The centre is a collaboration of the Chemistry, Mathematics and Biological Sciences departments. The centre will provide an opportunity to develop the interface between mathematics and biology and take advantage of new approaches to statistical modelling and the interpretation of complex biological data.
The programme will interest graduates in mathematics, computing and physical sciences who are looking to develop multidisciplinary research programmes. Each PhD student will receive a year's training in key areas of Mathematics, Scientific Computing, Chemistry and Biology, which leads to an MSc, and will then complete a doctorate, applying their knowledge to cellular or molecular biology.
The programme starts October 2003 and interested candidates should visit the MOAC website www.maths.warwick.ac.uk/moac for more information.