Research Experience Placements

Widening Participation Research Experience Placements for undergraduate students

Details of the 2024 Call

You can find details of the 2024 REP scheme on our new website here:

For questions, email EASTBIO

REP Scheme 2023

In 2023, the EASTBIO DTP offered 2-month lab placements to 12 undergraduate candidates across the partner institutions of Aberdeen, Edinburgh (College of Science and Engineering and College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine) and SRUC; details of successful projects are below:

  • Anna Amorgianou to work with Dr Prerna Vohra on the project "Detection of virulence plasmids and antimicrobial resistance in Salmonella isolated from cattle" (Edinburgh CSE)
    Sandhya Behera to work with Dr Naomi Fox on the project "Characterising the immune response to coinfections in lambs" (SRUC)
    Oliver Bellarby to work with Drs Lesley Smith and Arianne Lowe on the project "Phenotypic AMR resistance livestock and linked environments" (SRUC)
    Roddy Black to work with Dr Ruth Morgan on the project "Understanding the pathogenesis of equine pituitary tumours" (SRUC)
  • Isabel Entwistle to work with Dr Tom Little and Dr Amy Pederson on the project "Ageing in a wild mouse population" (Edinburgh CSE)
    Georgia Goddard to work with Dr Douglas Vernimmen on the project "The biological role of UTX isoforms" (Edinburgh CMVM) - See Georgia's award-winning documentary about her REP project here!
  • Elizabeth Hanson to work with Professor Sam Martin on the project "Genes underlying gill inflammation in Atlantic salmon" (Aberdeen)
    Eve Kenicer to work with Dr Ben Swallow on the project "Long-term monitoring of survival in Trinidad birds through a mark-recapture study" (St Andrews)
    Piotr Kruc to work with Professor Heather Wilson on the project "The impact of anti-diabetic therapy on susceptibility to fungal infection" (Aberdeen)
    Ciara McCulloch to work with Dr Jennifer Paxton on the project "Investigating the effect of fluid flow on musculoskeletal cell types" (Edinburgh CMVM)
    Fergus Paterson to work with Dr Darren Obbard on the project "A new multipartite virus" (Edinburgh CSE)
  • Kevin Woo to work with Dr Jelena Baranovic on the project "Investigation of a novel class of protozoan and fungal transmembrane proteins" (Edinburgh CSE)


You can see some examples of project reports by our 2023 REP awardees here.

We met the 2023 REP awardees and their supervisors at the 2023 REP Induction (Dundee, 22-23 May 2023). The REP Induction provided the opportunity to explore the PhD route from a variety of perspectives and gain confidence in considering a career in research. Students have interacted with former and current EASTBIO students, the host REP supervisors and members from the Management Group and industry.

Find tweets about this #eastrep23

EASTBIO REP Group photo - Dundee, 22 May 2023

EASTBIO thanks EASTBIO Co-Director Dr Edgar Huitema, EASTBIO lead for the University of Dundee, for hosting the Induction, and the local support team for their assistance with the logistics of this event.

(from left) Josh Richards, Alistair Bonsall, Rochelle Kennedy, Dr Edgar Huitema and Temitayo Ademolue - Q&A Panel at REP Induction 2023 (Dundee, 22 May 2023)

It was an honor to be joined by current and former EASTBIO students on both days and benefit from their insights on both PhD and post-PhD experiences!

REP Scheme 2022

EASTBIO DTP awarded REP funding to ten undergraduate students in their first or second year of studies to do a lab placement at various DTP partner institutions:

Flora Alapy to work on "Characterising the skeletal muscle gene expression signature when exercise is performed concomitant with metformin treatment" (Bioscience for an integrated understanding of Health) with Dr Brendan Gabriel (University of Aberdeen)

Thomas Gillen  to work on "Making biological tools to facilitate cell-based assays in investigating Bet-protein degradation using PROTACs" (Bioscience for an integrated understanding of Health) with Professor Alessio Ciulli and Dr Selma Cabrita Gulyurtlu (University of Dundee)

Nerea Caro Guerrero to work on "Investigating the impact of abiotic stresses on the efficacy of single-strand DNA-mediated precision gene editing" (Understanding the Rules of Life) with Dr Attila Molnar (University of Edinburgh - CSE)

Elizabeth Hanson to work on "Identification of co-evolutionary relationships between coral hosts and their microbiomes" (Understanding the Rules of Life) with Dr Marius Wenzel (University of Aberdeen)

Piotr Kruc to work on "Rescuing deficits in interneuron distribution in a rat model of Fragile X Syndrome" (Bioscience for an integrated understanding of Health) with Dr Sam Booker (University of Edinburgh - CMVM)

Anna McAllister to work on "The use of the blood-feeding mite Dermanyssus gallinae in poultry disease detection" (Bioscience for sustainable agriculture and food) with Dr Francesca Nunn (MRI)

Jamie McCulloch to work on "Developing a novel litter treatment to reduce microbial loads in chicken bedding" (Bioscience for sustainable agriculture and food) with Dr Naomi Fox (SRUC)

Laura Scott to work on "The role of hepatic insulin clearance in equine metabolic syndrome" (Bioscience for sustainable agriculture and food) with Dr Ruth Morgan (SRUC)

Tristan Sones-Dykes to work on "Integrative analysis of epigenetic gene regulation to support the translation of methylation sequencing studies" (Bioscience for an integrated understanding of Health) with Professor Andy Lynch (University of St Andrews)

Jennie Yang to work on "An evaluation of novel signaling lipid binders" (Understanding the Rules of Life) with Dr David Murray (University of Dundee)


Successful REP award recipients were asked to attend a mandatory two-day residential Induction event, Swimming Research Waters in Dundee, Monday 30th to Tuesday 31st May 2022. REP Supervisors have also joined us at the event, where REP students interacted with senior academics, current and former EASTBIO students and the EASTBIO team.

The ten EASTBIO REP award recipients 2022 joined the EASTBIO Induction event on the 30-31 May in Dundee to discuss what it means to do a PhD, and share the experiences of being an EASTBIO-funded student by conversing with first-year students, EASTBIO alumni and alumna, as well as with EASTBIO supervisors and guest speakers.

We have been honoured to experience first hand and in person the passion for science, the knowledge, engagement and empathy of all our stakeholders who shared insights, reflections and information with these talented prospective researchers, about to go on their lab placements at EASTBIO partner institutions.

Confirmed speakers included:

Professor Carol MacKintosh (Dundee)

Dr Sam Miller (Aberdeen)

Dr Fiona M. Mitchell (Research and Innovation Services, University of Dundee)



Also, EASTBIO Alumni, shown below in conversation:

Dr Lucas Jesús Morales Moya (Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research, Basel, Switzerland)

Dr Mark Moseley (University of Aberdeen)

Current EASTBIO students Amy Newell (Edinburgh), Shannon Richardson (St Andrews), Sau Yee Tsoi (Edinburgh), and Charlotte Winspear (James Hutton Institute, Edinburgh) answered questions from REP recipients on the 30th of May.

The Induction concluded with a discussion with REP project supervisors and members of the EASTBIO Management Group, Dr Edgar Huitema (Dundee) and Dr Sam Miller (Aberdeen).