Preface content

Postgraduate studentships

The Pirbright Institute has formed partnerships with a number of different universities and companies in the UK to offer a selection of exciting studentships studying viral infections of animals.

These partnerships offer students an exceptional opportunity to obtain a broad view of infectious disease research in a rich, stimulating and unique research environment. Students will have the opportunity to work with the different partners involved in their project, thereby giving them access to novel ways of tackling the problems of livestock diseases through interdisciplinary, cross-institutional approaches. This will be coupled to core skills training at the student’s host institutions, providing flexible training options and experiences that will support a wide range of career choices.

Studentship Funding Eligibility:

For further information on funding eligibility please refer to UKRI Full Eligibility Criteria (Annex One)

Ref Number Closing Date PhD Studentship Supervisors Project Details
2022/10/ET/CR 10.10.21 Mechanisms of induction of protective lung tissue resident memory cells against influenza Dr Elma Tchilian (The Pirbright Institute), Prof Christine Rollier (University of Surrey), Dr Eleni Vatzia (The Pirbright Institute)

Influenza is a global health threat to humans and livestock and animal influenza viruses are the CDC’s top zoonotic pathogen. There is a critical need to develop vaccines that provide broad protection and decrease the need for annual immunisation.

We have established a powerful pig influenza model to study immunity to influenza. Pigs are a natural host for the same subtypes of influenza virus as humans and have the same distribution of sialic acid receptors in their respiratory tract. The pig is immunologically, physiologically and anatomically more similar to humans than small animals.

Lung tissue-resident memory T and B cells (TRM and BRM) are critical for cellular immunity to influenza and other respiratory pathogens. TRM and BRM are most effectively induced by natural infection or mucosal delivery of vaccines. However the factors necessary for their generation and maintenance are not well understood, but both the method of antigen administration and the nature of the antigen itself may play a crucial role. In this project we shall investigate the generation and properties of TRM and BRM induced by H1N1pdm09 influenza infection or mucosal immunisation with adenoviral vectored vaccine expressing influenza internal (nucleoprotein) and external (hemagglutinin) proteins.  Full details and how to apply

The Pirbright Institute has the following studentships which should be applied for through our partner organisations:  

Partner Organisation/s Project Title Applications

How to apply:

See 'how to apply' page for details.

General enquiries can be emailed to

Studentships provide for tuition fees and stipend depending on eligibility (see project advert for details).


UK Posgraduate Doctoral Loans:

A Postgraduate Doctoral Loan (of up to £25,700) can help with course fees and living costs while you study a postgraduate doctoral course, such as a PhD.  Students in receipt of Research Council funding are not eligible.  Details can be found here.


Trim content

® The Pirbright Institute 2021 | A company limited by guarantee, registered in England no. 559784. The Institute is also a registered charity.