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Medical Genomics MSc

Learn about the course below
October 2020
1 year full-time
2 years part-time
£9,200 (UK/EU) *
£14,000 (INT) *
Course leader
Dr Martijn Timmermans

We’re planning to teach through a flexible combination of online and face to face learning for the first few months of the new academic year. If you’re thinking about starting with us in autumn 2020 or spring 2021, check back for more detail on arrangements for this course in July and August, and see our current plans for teaching and learning.

Genomic technologies are transforming the Biomedical sciences. Recent developments in DNA sequencing are creating unprecedented opportunities in molecular diagnostics, personal medicine and (infectious) disease prevention. There is a clear need for genomics specialists that can analyse and interpret genome data in a (bio)medical context.

Why study MSc Medical Genomics at Middlesex University?

This is an interdisciplinary programme with teaching provided by Life Sciences and Computer Science research active academics as well as other experts in the field. You will gain a comprehensive understanding of how changes in the genome relate to human disease. You will be trained to pursue a career in medical genomics in academia and industry.

This programme has a strong applied and practical focus. Hands-on learning provides you with the practical and computational skills needed for a successful career in medical genomics.

Course highlights

  • Integrated and practical approach to teaching with expert input from biological, biomedical and computer scientists
  • A strong link between teaching and our biomedical research
  • Access to state-of-the-art laboratory and computing facilities
  • Individual dissertation project allows high degree of specialisation in sub-area of own interest.

Find out more

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What will you study on MSc Medical Genomics?

This programme will provide you with a solid understanding of the structural complexity of genomes and how mis-regulation of genes can result in disease. In conjunction, specialist classes will provide you with practical skills in genome wide disease identification and molecular diagnostics via laboratory sessions.

Computational tools and statistical techniques for genome research and diagnostics will be introduced using real-life data-sets and will specifically focus on computer coding, data handling and the analysis of large sequential data-sets.

A strong link between research and teaching ensures you will develop good practical skills in medical genomics, preparing you for the job market.

What will you gain?

You will gain good laboratory skills in genomics, including sample handling and laboratory management. The programme also aims to teach good computing skills, including computer languages and the statistical analysis of big data. This will involve the design, planning of genomics experiments.

  • Modules

    • Informatics for Genomics (30 credits) - Compulsory

      In this module, you will be equipped with the theoretical and algorithmic basis for analysing large, multidimensional genomics datasets.

    • Genomics Techniques (15 credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to give you a comprehensive understanding of molecular biology techniques in genomics and relevant sample and data-processing skills.

    • Molecular Diagnostics (30 credits) - Compulsory

      The aim of this module is to provide you with the latest theory and practice of molecular diagnostics so you can gain a thorough understanding of the scope of molecular analysis technology used in the analysis and their use in diagnosis.

    • Population Genomics (15 credits) - Compulsory

      The module aims to give you a thorough understanding on how evolutionary processes affect the genome and what can be concluded from such changes.

    • Genome Structure and Function (15 credits) - Compulsory

      The module aims to give you a detailed understanding of the structural complexity of genomes, their maintenance, and the intricate regulation of gene expression via molecular interactions and biochemical modifications.

    • Ethics (15 credits) - Compulsory

      This module explores the ethical issues present in the rapidly developing area of genetic technology, including genetic testing and selection, genetic engineering, and the concept of genetic disease.

    • Dissertation (60 credits) - Compulsory

      This module comprises an individual research project where you will have the opportunity to work with a research supervisor in a project of your chosen field.

You can find more information about this course in the programme specification. Optional modules are not offered on every course. If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, or there are staffing changes which affect the teaching, it may not be offered. If an optional module will not run, we will advise you after the module selection period when numbers are confirmed, or at the earliest time that the programme team make the decision not to run the module, and help you choose an alternative module.

How is the MSc Medical Genomics taught?

This programme is taught through a mixture of lectures, seminars, computing workshops and investigative molecular and clinical laboratories. You are encouraged to actively engage with your learning. Group work is prominent in many modules and there will be opportunities to discuss and explore work with peers, academics and the technical team.


Assessment is diverse and includes portfolio-work, writing a scientific paper, analysing genomic data, preparing a poster and presenting results. Additionally, you will submit a dissertation on your major research project and undertake a viva related to the work. The project will be supervised by a member of academic staff but you will be strongly encouraged to work with external partner institutions in the UK or overseas. In this case, you may also have a mentor based at the external institution.

  1. UK & EU
  2. International
  3. How to apply
  1. UK & EU
  2. International
  3. Additional costs
  4. Scholarships and bursaries

How can the MSc Medical Genomics support your career?

As a graduates of this programme you will have a solid background in Medical Genomics. The field is fast developing and graduates with a specialisation in Medical Genomics can, for example, find work in:

  • Academia
  • Industry in clinical trials
  • Laboratory-based research assistant
  • Bioinformatician or geneticist
  • Medical Diagnostics in a hospital-based laboratory setting
  • Personalised medicine or commercial personalised DNA analysis (e.g. ancestry services)
  • Ethical advisor
  • Market research assistant

There are a number of key areas that are in need of researchers trained to do genome scale analyses, and with the recent announcement that the 100,000 genomes project is set to be extended to analyse 5 million genomes within 5 years, this demand is likely to increase exponentially.

Dr Martijn Timmermans
Senior lecturer

Dr Timmermans’ research aims to link the evolution and maintenance of biological diversity to changes in genomes. He uses genomic techniques to gain understanding of the genetics underlying phenotypic divergence.

Dr Helen Roberts
Senior lecturer

Dr Roberts gained a PhD from the University of Glasgow where she investigated the molecular events surrounding steroid-induced skeletal growth retardation. Following this, she moved to the University of Sheffield where she investigated epigenetic biomarkers which were able to predict cancer progression. She has since coordinated research projects both at KU Leuven in Belgium, where she researched the role of epigenetics and autophagy in critical illness-induced bone loss, and at Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry where she used genome-wide molecular profiling to identify epigenetic biomarkers associated with inflammation and immune suppression in critically ill patients. Dr Roberts currently coordinates a research track investigating the epigenetic regulation of aberrant cellular behaviour and subsequent skeletal tissue morbidity. She has a particular interest in the role of epigenetics and autophagy in the regulation of osteosarcoma metastasis and chemoresistance.

Dr Dallas Roulston

Dr Roulston  obtained a Master of Science (Clinical Microbiology) from Queen Mary, University of London in 2011 and completed his PhD from the UCL Eastman Dental Institute. His thesis investigated the utilisation of optical methods for the mapping of microgradients in environmental parameters in dental biofilms. He holds State Registration with the Health and Care Professions Council as a Biomedical Scientist and is currently the American Society of Microbiology (ASM) Young Ambassador of Science for the United Kingdom. He regularly participates in public outreach and engagement activities and is a member of a number of microbiology and dental research societies, including Microbiology Society, Society of Applied Microbiology, British Society for Oral and Dental Research. Dr Roulston's research interests include clinical microbiology, advanced microscopy techniques, biofilms and their role in infectious disease (particularly dental pathologies and prosthetic joint infections), microbial proteomics and molecular microbiology.

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Duration: 1 year full-time

Code: PGC180

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Start: October 2020

Duration: 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time

Code: PGC450

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