Research banner


Our department's research has an excellent reputation. Molecular Biology and Biotechnology was ranked number one in the UK for the impact and quality of our medical research in the Research Excellence Framework 2014, and we're in the top five for our biological science research. Below, you can find out about the global challenges that our research is addressing, the research themes that our academic staff work across, and the University of Sheffield research centres that our department is contributing expertise to so that we can answer some of the biggest questions in science.

Global Challenges

Research in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology is addressing some of the key issues affecting our society. Choose a topic to find out how.

Food Security

Taking a molecular approach to produce robust crops with increased yield is helping work towards providing safe and sustainable nutrition for everyone


Antibiotic Resistance

Antibiotic resistance threatens our ability to treat common infections at an unprecedented rate, and requires an in-depth understanding of multi-resistant pathogens


Healthy Ageing

As we continue to live longer, conditions associated with age are becoming more common. Steps are being taken to ensure we remain healthy into our later years


Research Themes

Discover the scope of research undertaken by the expert research teams in our department. Choose a topic to find out about the staff working in each of these areas.


Investigating the fundamentals of microbial physiology and pathogenicity


Plants and Photosynthesis

Studies on photosynthetic complexes, plant development and algae


Eukaryotic Cell Biology

Mammalian cells and yeast as models for human disease and fundamental cellular processes


Genomics and Nucleic Acids

From genome-wide studies to the molecular fundamentals of DNA damage and micro-RNAs


Biochemistry and Biotechnology

Transferring our understanding of living systems into applied science


Structural Biology

Exploring the architecture and interactions of biological systems in atomic detail


Research institutes and consortiums

Researchers in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology are making major contributions to some of the University of Sheffield's flagship research centres, to drive innovation and collaboration.


  • Using revolutionary microscopy techniques to answer some of the biggest questions in biology and medicine


  • Addressing the challenge of infectious disease, with a focus on antibiotic resistance and host-pathogen interactions


  • Sustainability research and policy debates on how to build a fairer world and save natural resources for the future


  • Scientists from medicine, science and engineering investigating the role of nucleic acids in health and disease

P3 logo

  • A translational biology centre encompassing the breadth of plant and soil science expertise at Sheffield

Krebs logo

  • Focussed on mechanistic biology to study basic, life-governing, processes from the cellular to the atomic level


  • A network designed to foster collaborations between academia, industry, policy makers and NGOs in industrial biotechnology and bioenergy

Sheffield Bioinformatics logo

  • A cross-departmental collection of independent research groups, providing world-class computational biology capabilities

Robert Hill Institute

  • A plant science research centre providing the underpinning knowledge to support UK and world food security.

Independent Research Fellowships

Our programme for Independent Research Fellows is designed to establish you as a research leader in an ambitious, vibrant and supportive environment.

Long-term Fellows in the Faculty of Science at the University of Sheffield get:

  • the offer of an academic position after their Fellowship
  • a PhD student to kick-start their research portfolio

Learn more and apply