Ph.D. Programme in Computational Biology

— "For students interested in frontier research at the interface of biology, computer science, physics and mathematics."

PhD Application DEADLINE EXTENDED TO JUNE 15, 2021 in view of pandemic situation.

The Institute of Mathematical Sciences (IMSc) is a leading research institute in the areas of theoretical physics, mathematics, theoretical computer science and computational biology. In 2013 IMSc started a unique Ph.D. programme in computational biology, training students to apply cutting-edge computational and mathematical techniques to problems in modern biology. Members of the computational biology group have collaboration with leading biology departments and institutions in India and abroad.

IMSc is an autonomous national research institute under the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Government of India, and a constituent institution of the Homi Bhabha National Institute (HBNI), Mumbai, a deemed university. Ph.D. degrees will be awarded by HBNI.

Structure of the Ph.D. programme

Before embarking on their research, students have three semesters of coursework, which consists of seven core courses which are taught in IMSc; elective courses, which may be taken at IMSc or at other institutions by mutual consent; and experimental lab rotations, at collaborating labs in other institutions. The core coursework covers essentials of modern biology, essential techniques from physics, mathematics, statistics and computer science, physics of proteins and biomolecules, biological sequence analysis and algorithms, and systems biology. Elective coursework covers various topics in greater depth. Following the coursework and a comprehensive examination, students will embark on research leading to a Ph.D. degree.

Selected candidates will be research fellows at IMSc and will receive fellowships, housing or house rent allowance, and contingency grants.

Read course syllabus.

Research Areas

Current research interests of faculty in the computational biology group include:

  • Biomolecular modelling
  • Biophysics and mechanobiology
  • Computational neuroscience
  • Ecology
  • Evolutionary biology
  • Infectious disease modelling
  • Pattern formation and dynamics
  • Regulatory genomics
  • Systems and network biology

We expect to expand into more areas in coming years. See here for more details.


The minimum eligibility criteria for this Ph.D. programme includes:

(a) Masters or 4-year Bachelors (B.E. or B.Tech. or equivalent) degree in any branch of science, mathematics or engineering, and

(b) Test score valid as of June 2021 in any national research entrance exam including CSIR-UGC JRF, GATE, JGEEBILS, DBT JRF, BINC, NBHM and JEST

Important dates

  • Last date for Applications is June 15, 2021.

  • Interviews will be held in June/July 2021.

  • We are also considering having a second round of applications/interviews later in the year, for students who were unable to apply in this round due to pandemic related disruption.

How to Apply

Please send applications via email to:  compbio.applications [at] imsc [dot] res [dot] in

Include with your application:

  • A covering letter
  • A statement of interest
  • A curriculum vitae including university grades/marks
  • Results of relevant national entrance exam (CSIR-UGC JRF, GATE, JGEEBILS, DBT JRF, BINC, NBHM, JEST or other


Incomplete applications will not be considered.

IMSc Computational Biology PhD admissions