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MSc structure

We offer a one year MSc programme, starting annually in September. 

The first semester of the year is dedicated to the underlying science and basic techniques and principles of Regenerative Medicine while the second semester deals with more practical aspects of cell production and the delivery of regenerative therapies to the patient or customer.

Innovation and enterprise

Throughout the course students are challenged to develop new idea and discover how these could be translated into practice. During the first semester the students are challenged to devise a new therapy, device or application in the area of regenerative medicine, and at the end of the semester present their ideas to a panel of experts. The experts select a number of these projects to be taken forward to into the 2nd semester. In the second semester the students form teams around the selected projects, which serve as a teaching tool through which the students develop an understanding of the processes required to develop and deliver a new product or therapy. The teams create business plans for the implementation of their idea,and these are assessed by the team of experts. In the process the teams are encouraged to submit their ideas in external competitions such as the Scottish Institute for Enterprise Young Innovator Challenge, or the University of Edinburgh Bioquarter Innovation Competition.

Semester 1

Stem cells and regenerative medicine

This module deals with the basics of stem cells and how they are, or may in the future be, used in the clinic. A wide range of topics is covered during the informal sessions, for example: stem cells and pluripotency, mechanisms of pluripotency, adult stem cells and ethical issues surrounding stem cells.

Fundamental biology of stem cells

This module covers a range of aspects of stem cell biology, including the nature of pluripotency and current theories of differentiation, the specialised niches in the body where stem cells are to be found, the nature and applications of adult stem cells.

Basic techniques in regenerative medicine

The MSc in Regenerative Medicine is a taught course, and while there is a laboratory placement during the course, there is no practical, laboratory based teaching. Instead, this module introduces major techniques used in Regenerative Medicine and how they are applied, for example: tissue culture, animal models in stem cells and regenerative medicine, lineage tracing, imaging techniques, flow cytometry and cell sorting, getting molecules into cells, gene editing, measuring expression of genes and their products - microarrays, RNASeq, proteomics, bioinformatics.

Scientific and academic writing

The scientific and academic writing (SAW) course is an on-line course designed to improve your skills in writing scientific and academic English. The SAW was created to address academic writing difficulties and improve students’ academic writing skills well in advance of the writing up stage of their research.

Semester 2

Regenerative medicine and industry

This course describes how applications of stem cells in medicine can be translated to the industrial setting. How stem cells can be used in drug discovery and drug screening/toxicology as well as in cell based therapeutics. The practical issues of quality control and scale up of processes are covered, as well as the legislative framework that surrounds the use of stem cells and cellular therapeutics.

Production of differentiated cells

This course provides the basic knowledge of how stem cells can be induced to differentiate into specific cell types. The factors that regulate this differentiation and modulate it’s efficiency will be discussed.

Industrial placement

The laboratory placement is a key component of the course where students gain real world experience of regenerative medicine. The placements may be in biotech companies in the regenerative medicine arena, or may be with national bodies engaged in delivery of regenerative therapies, or may be in academic labs conducting research in the area of stem cells and regenerative medicine. Depending on the aspirations and career interests of the student, in some cases the placements may not involve hands-on laboratory research but could include aspects of the regulation of regenerative therapies or development of new businesses.