PhD in Life Sciences

PhD In Life Sciences

The Doctorate in Life Sciences provides students with scientific and design skills in various fields of Biology, ranging from ecology, biodiversity, and biological evolution to agri-food, cellular and experimental biology in preclinical settings, with the aim of improving public health through disease prevention. The Doctoral Program, within the context of advanced education, is structured to serve as a natural continuation for graduates from Biology and related degree programs. However, it can also be a cultural outlet for graduates in Pharmacy, Biotechnology, and Medicine.

All training and research activities of doctoral students are carried out using various investigative methodologies to produce scientifically significant data in the relevant fields of the Doctorate. Doctoral students in Life Sciences have access to internationally recognized scientific expertise, project resources, and instrumental facilities. They are required to undertake periods of stay in foreign laboratories with which scientific collaborations are active with the faculty members of the Doctoral Research Committee.

Moreover, the Doctorate has established long-standing agreements with companies operating in the fields of Biotechnology, Pharmaceuticals, and Agri-food. This allows doctoral students to gain integrated knowledge of the most modern research techniques to achieve complex scientific objectives, including planning international collaborations and the ability to translate basic academic research into advanced technological applications.

Additionally, the collaboration agreements with the Universities of Pisa and Florence, and the CNR-IBE, have enabled participation in the "POR FSE 2021/27 - Doctoral Courses implemented in network cycle XXXIX - Pegaso Doctoral Scholarships" competition, with a request for 6 doctoral scholarships (5 funded) aligned with the training project of the Doctorate in Life Sciences.

The Doctorate in Life Sciences is structured into two Curricula: Biodiversity, Conservation, and Environmental Quality, and Biology, Physiopathology, and Cellular Pharmacology. The objectives of the first curriculum are to prepare research doctors with expertise in the evolutionary and ecological mechanisms underlying biodiversity, nature conservation, management of anthropized environments, and the use of agri-food heritage. The objectives of the second curriculum are to train research doctors competent in the functional, morphological-ultrastructural, and molecular aspects of cells and tissues to characterize the pathogenetic factors underlying diseases and understand how new drugs can modify cellular behavior and competent in the aspects of Global Health and immunization.

The overall goal of the program is to prepare culturally competent individuals capable of entering academic research, but above all, capable of promoting the transfer of innovative research methods in various sectors, including biomedical, biotechnological, pharmaceutical, health, agri-food industries, and in areas related to the monitoring, remediation, and management of natural and anthropized ecosystems. Active collaboration with companies also aims to train individuals capable of enhancing the technological transition between basic and industrial research.

The educational activities are characterized by interdisciplinary themes aimed at providing updated knowledge in different areas of biology. Furthermore, transdisciplinary activities (knowledge of the European research space, preparation and management of projects, intellectual property) are promoted through courses organized by UNISI.

The success of the program's objectives is emphasized by the various employment opportunities that graduates of the Doctorate in Life Sciences have had in recent years: post-doctoral fellows at the University of Siena and, significantly, at national and international institutions. Active collaboration with companies in the biotechnological and pharmaceutical fields has given them the opportunity to sign contracts with biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies and private foundations. Others have engaged in teaching at both primary and secondary school levels.


Expected Employment and Professional Opportunities


The interdisciplinary nature of the Doctorate program covers various aspects of biology and human health. Doctoral students also have the opportunity to acquire transdisciplinary skills such as: communicating science, writing and managing national and European projects, patent management. Additionally, collaboration with various industries in the biotechnological field gives them a direct approach to industrial research issues. All of this provides Doctoral graduates in Life Sciences with the necessary skills to find employment opportunities in sectors related to technology transfer and innovation in biotechnological, pharmaceutical, health, agri-food companies, and in companies and organizations involved in monitoring, restoration, and management of natural and anthropized ecosystems. Another natural employment opportunity for Doctoral graduates is in the University sector, both nationally and internationally. Furthermore, Doctoral graduates in Life Sciences find professional opportunities in the field of education aimed at both secondary school students of first and second degree.