Obesity and Endocrinology (Medicine)

MPhil / PhD / MD

The Institute of Ageing and Chronic Disease researches clinical aspects of obesity and diabetes in humans, with particular reference to control of energy balance and complications of obesity such as diabetes and obstructive sleep apnoea. We work closely with the Department of Diabetes and Endocrinology based at Aintree University Hospital.

A powerful focus for understanding ageing and chronic disease

We have over 100 staff creating new insights into bioscience, epidemiology, health issues, patients, lifestyles and care.

  • 100

    staff creating new insights.

  • £11m

    annual budget.

  • £35m

    bespoke research facility.

Research at Liverpool

The Institute of Ageing and Chronic Disease provides a powerful focus for understanding the many variables - from bioscience to social - that influence ageing and chronic disease in people throughout their lives. The key principle behind our research is the recognition over the last decade that to elucidate cell, organ or organismal function in health and disease requires an integrated approach utilising the best available cutting-edge technologies. Our research activity ranges from molecules to population and from laboratory to bedside.

Techniques include functional neuroimaging of appetite control in endocrine disease in collaboration with LiMRIC, real-time measurement of appetite and studies of liver and muscle metabolism - including euglycaemic clamp studies - in obesity, diabetes and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. The group also conducts clinical trials and has close links with a number of research groups in Africa. In veterinary practice and research, there are parallel interests in obesity and metabolic disease in companion animals, horses and cattle and basic research models of human disease. Pre-clinical research focuses on adipocyte biology, with particular interests in the endocrine products of adipose tissue, and has close links with the clinical groups.

We offer MPhil, PhD, MD and post-doctoral training programmes that provide exposure to the wide-range of disciplines on offer. Many of our students are also recognised for the role they play in communicating the science to the wider community. On completing their PhDs, many of our graduates go on to take competitive post-doctoral positions in the UK or overseas, or elect to take career paths in the NHS, government or the commercial sector.

Delivering this kind of return on investment has helped us to attract solid funding, with partners including Wellcome Trust, UK Research Councils, NIH (USA), Unilever and GSK. With these extensive in-house research facilities and strong UK and global academic partners, we are well-placed to continue our mission and realise our ambitious plans in the ageing and chronic disease field.

Research interests

We particularly welcome research proposals that match those of our researchers, including:

  • Pathophysiology and treatment of obesity and type 2 diabetes
  • Insulin resistance and insulin signalling
  • Inflammatory adipokines in health and disease
  • The influence of sedentary behaviour on health.

Research groups

  • Clinical Research in Diabetes and Obesity
  • Companion Animal Ageing and Obesity Biology
  • Equine Endocrine Disease and Laminitis.

Study options and fees

MPhil

The Master of Philosophy (MPhil) can be thought of as a shorter version of the PhD. It requires the same research skills, training, planning, and project management. It can be a way to assess whether you wish to undertake doctoral research - or it can be taken for its own sake.

Duration Fees: Home and EU Students Fees: International Students
Full time 2-4 years £4,260 £19,850 (Lab based programmes) £16,150 (Non Lab based programmes)
Part time 4-6 years £2,130 £9,925 (Lab based programmes) £8,075 (Non Lab based programmes)
PhD

A doctoral degree is awarded to students that have demonstrated the ability to conceptualise, design, and implement a substantial research project that results in new knowledge, applications, or understanding in their field of study. During your research, you can expect to draw on direct clinical and observational experience to produce an original thesis of 80,000-100,000 words. You'll be part of a research group which matches your research interests. Research groups offer opportunities for cross-disciplinary research collaboration, as well as support and expertise for your research.

Duration Fees: Home and EU Students Fees: International Students
Full time 2-4 years £4,260 £19,850 (Lab based programmes) £16,150 (Non Lab based programmes)
Part time 4-6 years £2,130 £9,925 (Lab based programmes) £8,075 (Non Lab based programmes)
MD

The Doctor of Medicine (MD) is a doctoral degree open to medical practitioners (technically, anyone holding a medical qualification registrable with the General Medical Council). It is equivalent in requirements and format to the PhD.

Duration Fees: Home and EU Students Fees: International Students
Full time 2-4 years £4,260 £19,850 (Lab based programmes) £16,150 (Non Lab based programmes)
Part time 2-6 years £2,130 £9,925 (Lab based programmes) £8,075 (Non Lab based programmes)

Entry requirements

Eligibility and entry qualifications

A good (2:1 or above) honours first degree or a master’s degree in an appropriate science subject, preferably relevant to the area of interest, is required.

English language requirements

To apply for this research degree, you must have reached a minimum standard of English. You need to be able to provide evidence of this.  See our English language requirements for international students for guidance on the different English language qualifications and evidence that you can provide. 

International qualifications

We welcome applications from within the EU and from around the world. You should ensure that your qualifications are equivalent to those which are required to study for this research degree.  See our guidance on international qualifications.

Additional requirements

How to apply

Research degree applications can be made online.  Before you apply, we recommend that you identify a supervisor and develop a research proposal.  You'll also need to ensure that you have funding to cover all fees.

Applications are open all year round.

More about applying for research degrees

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Find a supervisor

Your supervisor is your main source of academic support and mentoring. You'll need to find a supervisor before you start your research degree. It's helpful to identify a supervisor and discuss your research proposal before you apply.

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Related studentships

Funding

LDC module

Your training and development

Join us and you'll also join the Liverpool Doctoral College, our home for doctoral support, training and development. You'll join a vibrant and collaborative community of researchers, get tailored support for your development and have the opportunity to undertake a work placement.

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