The FMI MD-PhD program is intended for individuals who have studied medicine and who wish to gain a deep knowledge in fundamental biological research by performing a PhD thesis. Students applying to the program must hold, or anticipate to receive before their enrollment, a university degree that would qualify them to enter formal clinical training / residency (e.g. a diploma in medicine or an approbation). They also should have some laboratory research experience and have done an experimental Master/Diploma thesis, which must be approved by the University of Basel.

FMI MD-PhD students are selected through a competitive institute-wide interview process that takes place twice a year (application deadlines in May and November).

The selection procedure is governed by the MD-PhD Program Committee:
Patrick Matthias (chair)
Helge Grosshans
Antoine Peters
Botond Roska


A course of study at FMI leading to a PhD degree of the University of Basel typically lasts 4 years.


The group leader of the research group is the main supervisor. In addition, PhD students are supported by a Thesis Committee of university professors and experts chosen by the student. One member of the thesis committee is part of the Medical Faculty.


As part of their education, graduate students are required to attend courses from the graduate teaching program at the University of Basel.

Clinical work

Students interested in also pursuing clinical work can, in agreement with their PhD supervisor at FMI, devote up to 20% of the PhD studies time to clinical work. The clinical work is done in conjunction with a Professor at the Medical Faculty of the University of Basel and often will be part of a collaboration between the FMI Group Leader and the Medical Faculty Professor.


The FMI provides financial support to graduate students in accordance with the scale of the Swiss National Science Foundation. Income is generous relative to international standards for PhD students.

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