Clinical Neurology MRes/MPhil/PhD/DM

MRes/MPhil/PhD/DM Clinical Neurology
The School of Medicine has world-class laboratory facilities, incorporating the latest technologies and specialist services.

Fact file

MRes/MPhil/PhD/DM Clinical Neurology
MRes: 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time; MPhil: 2 years full-time, 4 years part-time; PhD/DM: 3–4 years full-time, 6–8 years part-time
Entry requirements
MRes/MPhil: 2:2 (or international equivalent); PhD/DM: 2:1 (or international equivalent), plus a registrable medical qualification for DM; evidence of research activity, including BMedSci or BSc degrees, will be an advantage
6.5 (no lower than 6.0 in any element) If these grades are not met, English preparatory courses are available
Start date
October, December, February, April, July 
Medical School
Other requirements



The Clinical Neurology Research Group's main interest is multiple sclerosis (MS). We investigated paradoxically shared signalling pathways for interferon type 1 (IFN), an MS treatment, and interleukin-12 (IL-12), a proinflammatory cytokine detrimental in MS. We showed that different factors modulate the pathway differently when activated by IFN and IL-12, and that MS patients have an intrinsic IFN signalling deficit. We showed that astrocytes can express and produce most elements of the IL-12 family of cytokines.

We have shown induction of regulatory T (Treg) cells that protect against autoimmunity, by steroids, and induction of the main transcription factor for Treg cells, foxp3, by steroids and IFN. We investigate how IL-12 suppresses signalling pathways essential for Treg function.

We also investigate the role of T cells producing IL-17 (Th17) cells in MS. We have identified a Th17 marker.

Another line of investigation relates to the role of the innate immune system (comprising dendritic cells and other antigen presenting cells) in regulating inflammatory demyelination in the central nervous system (CNS). Specifically we are focusing on the role of Toll-like receptors (TLRs) in modulating the function of Tregs and other classes of immune cells in MS and its animal model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). Studies in EAE will be essential for preclinical testing of new treatments for MS and to address mechanisms of CNS inflammation, demyelination, and neuronal damage in vivo.

On the imaging side, we have applied advanced MRI (diffusion tensor imaging, magnetisation transfer imaging, T1 mapping) to quantifying MS pathology. We developed an accurate method of measuring spinal cord area.

In the next one to two years we will continue studies to determine whether immunotherapy normalises the MS IFN signalling deficit. Detailed studies of Th17 cells and the novel marker we identified are planned. Treg and Th17 regulation by cytokines, vaccines, and parasites will be studied. We plan an immunomodulation trial of hookworms in MS. We will validate several novel MS targets in experimental models. We will embark soon in a high field (3T and 7T) MRI study of MS, where some of the subjects will be investigated serially.

Facilities: cell and molecular biology, tissue culture, PCR, image analysis software, access to flow cytometry and real time PCR.



School of Medicine Facilities

The School of Medicine has world-class laboratory facilities, incorporating the latest technologies and specialist services.

Read about our laboratory facilities and clinical services.



Research support


The Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences Graduate Centre provides a formal training course which covers a variety of transferable skills targeted specifically at students studying within the faculty. The course is credit weighted with particular parts of the course being compulsory/obligatory.

In addition The Graduate School has a dedicated training team who provide a comprehensive generic research training programme comprising over 80 different courses.  This central programme exists to complement the more discipline-specific research training mentioned above.


Pastoral care

A number of University support services exist to assist you during your time at Nottingham and beyond.

The Postgraduate Students' Association (PGSA) is a particularly important source of support.



Find a supervisor

We encourage you to get in touch with a member of academic staff about your research proposal before submitting an application. They may be able to help you with your proposal and offer support to find funding opportunities in your area. Use our search to find a supervisor whose expertise matches your own research interests.

Fees and funding

Home/EU students

The University is very successful in attracting sponsorship for research students, particularly from the Research Councils through competitions and annual allocations and with the European Commission’s Marie Curie programme. Please refer to the Graduate School for more information. Studentship opportunities are also available. 

Government loans for doctoral study

The Government recently introduced doctoral student loans of up to £25,000 for PhDs and equivalent research programmes. Applicants must ordinarily live in England.

Doctoral training programmes

Linked to research councils, doctoral training programmes offer funding opportunities connected to our research priorities.

International and EU students

Research scholarships are available for outstanding international and EU students. You must already have an offer to study at Nottingham to apply. Please note closing dates to ensure your course application is submitted in good time.

Information and advice on funding your degree, living costs and working while you study is available on our website, as well as country-specific resources.


The International Office offers a range of scholarship opportunities.  


Average starting salary and career progression

In 2015, 93% of postgraduates from the Faculty of Medicine & Health Services who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £28,925 with the highest being £70,000.*

*Known destinations of full-time home postgraduates 2014/15. Salaries are calculated based on those in full-time paid employment within the UK.

Career prospects and employability

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers* and can offer you a head-start when it comes to your career.

Our Careers and Employability Service offers a range of services including advice sessions, employer events, recruitment fairs and skills workshops – and once you have graduated, you will have access to the service for life.

* The Graduate Market 2013-2016, High Fliers Research


Related courses and downloads

Neurology (Clinical Neurology)

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This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.

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