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Course summary

The information provided on this page was correct at the time of publication (November 2023). For complete and up-to-date information about this course, please visit the relevant University of Oxford course page via The DPhil in Advanced Bioscience of Viral Products is a four year programme, led by gene and cell therapy company Oxford Biomedica and run in collaboration with University College London. The programme aims to deliver the next generation of bioscience leaders to advance research on the underpinning bioscience of viral products for future gene therapies and vaccines. This DPhil course will take a holistic approach to the science underpinning the successful development of new viral vector products including an understanding of the fundamental cell biology, bioprocessing considerations, improving our knowledge of the process/product, understand how these aspects can be translated and advanced in an industrial setting and identify how these fit into the wider regulatory context. A core component of this training programme is to immerse students in an environment where they are able to apply their fundamental scientific knowledge and research expertise to addressing the current capacity and capability issues in viral vector development. Throughout your training, you will work in interdisciplinary teams across the cohort, integrate your activities, share your knowledge and disseminate your research findings within the academic/industrial/clinical communities and to the public. All students on this course will undertake a placement with an industrial partner as part of their studies. An example of working across interdisciplinary teams will be ensuring student projects are designed to enable effective leveraging of data, tools and processes across research activities. Experimental and biological data generated from one project will feed into a project focused on employing advanced computational methods, which can then be used to feedback into the original project and inform future experimental design to inform our biological understanding. You will receive significant subject-specific knowledge and practical training in viral vector development, bioprocessing and production, including methods for virus generation, purification and characterisation. In parallel, you will also receive significant translational training with a focus on business/commercial analysis, understanding of the regulatory framework for advanced therapy medicinal products (ATMPs) and training in Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) including documentation preparation and compliance with Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), preparation of a Technology Transfer process, working within stringent Quality Management Systems (QMS) and how to file for a regulatory submission. Additionally the concept of quality by design (QbD) is widely adopted in the industry to build quality and consistency into processes; this concept also aligns with expectations from global regulatory agencies. Through a recent partnership with Microsoft Research, Oxford Biomedica also recognise that frontier bioscience and the emerging 21st century bioscience landscape necessitates a breaking down of traditional scientific boundaries, towards a model that embraces the emergence of mathematical, computational and data science tools such as AI and ML for the production, management and analysis of research data. For the full description, please visit the relevant University of Oxford course page via

Entry requirements

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Fees and funding

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Additional fee information

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Advanced Bioscience of Viral Products at University of Oxford - UCAS