Course details

Study options

Full-time: 1 year, Part-time: 2 years

UK/EU fee

£875 per 20 credits* (2020/21)

International fee

£14,700 for the full programme (2020/21)

Course level




Start date

See below


Kedleston Road, Derby Campus

Course description

Our MRes Molecular Medicine will help you to develop the key skills you will need for a research career, and allow you to put these into practice when you develop and conduct your own research project. Studying a masters degree in Molecular Medicine at Derby will:

Specialised facilities

We have specialised laboratory facilities available for your research projects. These include a molecular laboratory housing qPCR and DGGE equipment, an imaging suite, human cell culture facility, a dedicated microbiology laboratory, and an analytical suite housing GC/MS, HPLC, AAS, UV-Vis, IC as well as a scanning electron microscope and transmission microscope. 

Strong industry connections

We have strong connections with the Royal Derby Hospital and other health care providers. 

Experienced teaching team

Our staff expertise covers a diverse range of subjects and we have previously offered research projects in the following areas: human lifestyle and socio-economic drivers of disease risk, virology, microbiology and cancer research. Research systems at the larger spatial scale include investigating human lifestyle and socio-economic drivers of disease risk. 

Research areas available for 2019/2020 students are listed below. Please contact our Head of Discipline for Biomedical and Forensic Science, Shivadas Sivasubramaniam, for initial enquiries:

What is the natural history of Human Papillomavirus in the Oropharynx?

Human papillomavirus (HPV) can cause cancers of the genital tract, predominantly cervical cancer. However, HPV is now known to be associated with a subset of Head and Neck cancers in the tonsils and base of tongue, with younger men particularly at risk. Despite a thorough understanding of the natural history (prevalence, pathogenesis, and persistence) of HPV within a cervical infection, it is still not clear how HPV causes Head and Neck cancer. We have established a clinical study to examine the prevalence and pathogenesis of HPV within tonsillar tissue; this project will dissect and describe the natural history of HPV within the tonsil and examine how infections contribute to the development of Head and Neck cancer.

Cardiac rehabilitation – mixed methods study

Attendance on cardiac rehabilitation programmes is often lower amongst some ethnic groups, despite higher risks of cardiovascular disease. A project is available to explore why this varies between different groups of people, using methods such as questionnaires and focus groups to understand what lifestyle or socio-economic drivers may prevent engagement with health support.   

Mechanisms of angiogenesis – in vitro laboratory-based study

Angiogenesis is the formation of new blood vessels from existing vasculature; it is an important process in both physiological processes and pathological conditions, including tumour growth. A project is available to research angiogenic signalling mechanisms using cell-based models and assays, as well as to perform a meta-analysis of current anti-angiogenic drugs. 

Assessment of hypoxia associated marker levels in response to colloid nano-particle exposure: A 3D In Vitro Approach

Colloid nanoparticles have previously been associated with increased reactive oxygen species levels following exposure, this has a number of effects on the cell architecture. One notable change is a link between hypoxia and surface expression of complement inhibitory proteins. This project aims to determine if there is a potential link between hypoxia associated markers and exposure to colloid gold nanoparticles, within a 3D cell culture approach.

Generation of anti-decay accelerating factor (CD55) apatmers for targeted delivery of colloid gold nanoparticles: A 3D In Vitro/In Silico approach

Generation and development of aptamers has the potential to replace current approaches for biomarker identification, this project will focus on the feasibility of developing and aptamer targeting CD55. CD55 is a cancer biomarker over expressed at multiple solid state cancer sites, with current approaches to detecting it being restricted to antibody approaches. The project will look to make use of structural bioinformatics and molecular docking alongside a lab based selection of an aptamer using SELEX. Effectiveness of the aptamer will be assessed in silico and in vitro.

The role of novel stable apelin analogues in stem cell regeneration, neurodegeneration and neuroinflammation

Apelin is one of several endogenous adipokines, both preproapelin mRNA and APJ receptor mRNA have been detected in a wide range of tissue including neuronal cells. These bioactive peptides are involved in functions including GLP-1 induction and neuronal survival. We aim to further study the effects of this novel stable analogue in stem cell regeneration, neurodegeneration, neuro-inflammation.

Anti-oxidative effects of novel long acting apelin analogues

The adipocytokine, apelin, is abundantly secreted by adipocytes and shown to alleviate oxidative stress in cardio myocytes and vascular smooth muscle. Here we look to investigate the cytoprotective and anti-oxidative properties of apelin against hypoxia/reoxygenation induced oxidative stress and its role in placental health.

The effects of Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) on the invasion of transformed early trophobalst cells

Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) is one of a group of highly reactive gases which is a by-product of combustive engines that have been found to have major effects on human wellbeing. Studies have shown it has direct deleterious effects on the respiratory and cardiovascular system. However, the effects of NO2 on developing a feotus is not well studied, mainly due to ethical constraints. This in vitro study would investigate the direct effects of NO2 on the invasive capacity of transformed, first trimester, early trophobalst cells.


A woman holding her hands against her neck

Uncovering the link between HPV and head and neck cancer

Our scientists have developed a new screening method that detects human papillomavirus (HPV) in the mouth. They are now using this method to gain a better understanding of how HPV causes head and neck cancer.

Read moreRead more

What you will study

You'll study modules such as:

  • Independent Research (80 credits) or Independent Study (20 credits - PGDip only)
  • Digital Scholarship and Research Skills Development (40 credits)

Optional modules:

  • Advanced Qualitative Research Methods (20 credits)
  • Advanced Quantitative Research Methods (20 credits)
  • Negotiated Module in Science (20 credits)
  • Biomedical Biotechnology (20 credits)


Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

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Postgraduate Live Online Events

While we’re not able to welcome you in person to our campuses at the moment, we’re not going to let that stop us showing you all the great things about studying at Derby.

We’re currently planning our autumn Open Events to bring you the best possible online and on-campus experience.

Book your Live Online EventBook your Live Online Event

How you will learn

We offer a range of learning and teaching activities, including face-to-face and online teaching.


You will be assessed through a variety of methods allowing you to show your individual strengths and abilities. These include essays, portfolios, a dissertation, blogs, presentations, and a viva voce.

Who will teach you

Dr Shivads Sivasubramaniam

Dr Shivadas Sivasubramaniam
Programme leader

Dr Shiva D Sivasubramaniam is the Head of Biomedical and Forensic Science. His research scientific interests are trophoblast invasion and the effects of environmental pollution on developing placenta. His pedagogic research interests include medical ethics, student-centred teaching and enhancing academic integrity by developing student engagement.

View full staff profileView full staff profile

Entry requirements

You will need an undergraduate degree (typically 2:1 or higher, 2:2 will be considered) in biology, human biology, biomedical health or a related subject. If you have professional experience in human health, you may also be considered as eligible for this course.

If you are selected for an interview, you will be asked to submit a one page proposal outlining the areas of interest for your potential research project. More details concerning this proposal will be provided when you are invited to interview.

Fees and funding

2020/21 Fees (August 2020 - July 2021)


£875 per 20 credits*

£875 per 20 credits*


£14,700 for the full programme


*Note – at postgraduate level, you’ll need to gain the following number of credits in total to obtain the awards below.

Postgraduate Certificate60 Credits
Postgraduate Diploma120 Credits
MA or MSc180 Credits

This means you will gain 180 credits in total to complete the full MA or MSc. If you are studying part time you will normally complete your studies over two or three years, depending on the course structure.

Please note that all fees may be subject to annual increase.

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International student scholarship

We're offering a £2,000 scholarship for all eligible international students studying a full-time postgraduate taught programme (PGT). Terms and conditions apply.

Find out if you're eligible for an international scholarship Find out if you're eligible for an international scholarship

How to apply


After completing our MRes in Molecular Medicine, you’ll be in a stronger position to secure a career within your field of interest. Career opportunities that may be available to you upon completion of this course are: research associate, analytical consultant, scientific writer, laboratory manager, or scientific advisor.

Should you wish to continue your learning experience beyond masters level, our course will prepare you for further study towards a PhD.

Contact us

Course: Shivadas Sivasubramaniam (Programme Leader) +44 (0)1332 592239

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

Contact us Contact us

† Additional information about your studies

Start date is September 2020

Download programme specification

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.