Molecular and Cellular Biology, Genetics and Virology

Accreditation valid until: 23. 10. 2029

Chairman of the Subject Area Board:
doc. RNDr. Dana Holá, Ph.D.
Department of Genetics and Microbiology
Faculty of Science
Charles University
Viničná 5
128 43  Prague 2
phone: +420 221 951 200
e-mail: @email

Coordinator for the Second Faculty of Medicine:
doc. MUDr. Eva Froňková, Ph.D.
Department of Paediatric Haematology and Oncology
Seconf Faculty of Medicine
Charles University and Motol University Hospital
V Úvalu 84
150 06  Prague 5
phone: +420 224 436 489
e-mail: @email

Members of the Subject Area Board


Characteristics of the study programme

The purpose of the study program is to provide the students with advanced theoretical and practical knowledge in various areas of molecular and cell biology, genetics and virology, as well as to familiarize them with modern methodical and technical approaches utilized in these scientific fields and with the possibilities of such approaches for problem-solving in current biological and biomedical science (including interdisciplinary research). The main scope of the program can be characterized as the study of biological processes at molecular and cell level, focusing particularly on complex interactions between cells and environment or between various information macromolecules (DNA, RNA, proteins) and using the most modern approaches of molecular biology and bioinformatics.

Requirements during the study

The doctoral student must complete at least one scientific lecture/course related to the topic of his/her dissertation thesis and selected from the lists of subjects taught by the Second Faculty of Medicine, Charles University (including the lectures/courses organized by the co-operating institutions, e.g., the Czech Academy of Sciences). The selection of this lecture/course depends on the scientific/technical needs of the doctoral student and is made by him/her together with his/her supervisor. The successful completion of this lecture/course is a necessary condition prior to submitting an application for the state doctoral examination (SDE).

Further study duties can be stipulated by the internal rules of the respective faculty the student is registered in. In case it is explicitly stated in these rules, the successful completion of such study duties can be an additional condition necessary to fulfil before submitting an application for the SDE (e.g., the English language certificate at a certain level).

Besides this, doctoral students should actively participate in national and international conferences (including various types of regular conferences for doctoral students organized by the respective faculty / supervising institution; participation in this type of conference can even be an obligatory component of the ISP in case it is explicitly stated in the internal rules of the respective faculty the student is registered in). The active involvement of the student in the preparation of grant proposals of his/her supervising laboratory is also strongly recommended.

Requirements for internships

The doctoral students are strongly recommended to complete a research internship abroad during their study (total length at least one month). The decision on the inclusion of such internship in the ISP rests mainly with the supervisor and its realization depends on the options and resources of the supervising laboratory. In case such internship is not possible, the doctoral students must participate in international scientific cooperation by some other way in compliance with the Standards of the Study Programmes of Charles University.

Listed courses
Requirements for the SDE

Doctoral students must apply for the SDE during the 3rd year of their study at the latest. In case the first attempt to pass this examination is not successful, the second attempt must be made during the academic year following the first SDE attempt at the latest.

The SDE consists of an oral examination focused on student´s knowledge on two subjects which are personalized in accordance with the respective topic of the dissertation thesis. These two subjects must be approved by the SAB prior to the application for the SDE (i.e., the chairman of the SAB must be contacted and must approve of the subjects). During the SDE, the doctoral students must display advanced and detailed knowledge on the current state of scientific topics directly related to their area of specialisation (this is the first subject for the SDE), including knowledge on various methodical approaches related to their research (including their principles, various advantages and disadvantages) and topics reaching into associated research areas. The doctoral students should also have a good general theoretical background in molecular biology, cellular biology, genetics or virology (students must choose one of these four scientific fields as their second SDE subject), again with the emphasis of the current state of knowledge. During the SDE, it is expected that doctoral students will demonstrate their ability to comprehend the essence of any scientific problem, to place it in a broader context and particularly to propose their own creative solutions.

The SDE starts (after the introduction of the doctoral student by the chairman of the examination board) with a brief statement from the student about the current state of his/her doctoral project, its main goals, the methodical approaches used and the most important results already achieved, as well as the current state of his/her publication activity. Student can prepare short ppt or pdf presentation for this; the whole presentation must not take more than 8-10 minutes.

The dates of SDE for the academic year 2020/2021 can be found here.

Examination topics for the SDE
Publication activity requirements

The core of the doctoral study lies in the original, high-quality research independently carried out by the doctoral student. This research must result in at least two original scientific publications relevant to the topic of the dissertation thesis and published during the course of the doctoral study. At least one of these publications must be a research paper of an “original research article” type and the doctoral student must be its first author and must significantly participate in its creation. The required publications must be published in peer-reviewed journals indexed in reputable databases acknowledged by the general scientific community (Web of Science, journals with the impact factor, IF). In exceptional and justified cases (e.g., if the student is the first author of an exceptionally high-quality publication), the SAB can permit change of the publication requirements (e.g., one such paper would be sufficient instead of two commonly required). If the publication is not yet published, the students must present a record of confirmation of its acceptance by the respective scientific journal, otherwise such publication cannot be counted among the required number. The shared first-authorship can be accepted as the first-authorship only after the agreement of the chairman of the SAB. In case the second required publication is another type than an “original research article”, its acceptance as a required publication output should be also in advance consulted with the chairman of the SAB. Videopublications are not accepted (if they are not accompanied by a full-value scientific text).

Further publication requirements (in accordance with the ISP) can be stipulated by the internal rules of the respective faculty the student is registered in.

Defence requirements

Prior to submission of the dissertation thesis for its defence, all study duties stated in the ISP must be successfully passed and the same applies for the SDE. In addition to this, the doctoral student must be an author of at least two original scientific publications relevant to the topic of the dissertation thesis and published during the course of the doctoral study (see Creative Work and Publication Activity requirements).

The dissertation thesis must be an original work of the doctoral student. It should provide sufficient information necessary for the assessment whether the doctoral student is qualified for the independent research work in his/her respective scientific field. The doctoral student should be able to comprehensively describe and adequately cover the topic of the dissertation thesis, as well as to independently formulate opinions and questions based on the results of his/her doctoral project.

Besides the sections required by the university rules and the internal rules of the respective faculty (the title page, the signed declaration of the author, abstracts in Czech and English, etc.) and the supporting parts (the content, the reference list, the abbreviations list if appropriate), the dissertation thesis must contain these sections: 1) Introduction and Literary Overview (the summary of the current knowledge on the topic of the dissertation thesis based on the information available in the scientific literature); 2) clearly defined Aims of the Thesis; 3) Experimental Part (description of the original hypotheses and experiments performed in order to test these hypotheses, i.e., the general conception of experiments, the description of the experimental material and methodical approaches, as well as adequately described results documented in tables and/or figures); 4) Discussion; 5) Summary/Conclusions. These sections of the dissertation thesis can be further divided and appropriately named according to the general character of the doctoral project and the internal rules of the respective faculty (some modality in the general structure of the dissertation thesis is possible, e.g., the merging of the Experimental part and Discussion in case of theses from the bioinformatics field, however, this must be consulted in advance with the chairman of the cubject area board).

The experimental part can include (and can be partially replaced by) the original research papers of the doctoral student that are relevant to the topic of the dissertation thesis and were published, accepted for publication or are accepted for review in some IF journal during the course of the doctoral study. However, it is recommended to include only such papers that the student significantly participated in. These papers can be either incorporated directly into the text or can be presented as supplementary section of the dissertation thesis. They should be linked by the original explanatory text written by the student, which should emphasise the related nature of the respective publications in the context of the doctoral project and summarize the main results and conclusions presented in these papers. This text must also contain unambiguous and detailed verbal specification of the contribution of the doctoral student to both obtaining the experimental data and the preparation/writing of the respective manuscript(s). The doctoral student is fully responsible for the presentation of publications in such form that complies with the licencing rights of the respective publisher. However, the student must be also aware that the eventual incorporation of their publications into his/her dissertation thesis certainly cannot replace either the Introduction and Literary overview or the Discussion sections (the text in these sections of the dissertation thesis cannot be simply copied or only slightly re-formulated from the respective publications). The Experimental Part should also include all yet unpublished experiments performed by the doctoral student that are relevant to the topic of the dissertation thesis (such experiments and their results should be fully described).

The dissertation thesis can be written in Czech, in Slovak or in English (English is recommended).

The SAB of the programme does not require a separate Summary of the Dissertation Thesis.

The dates of the defences for the academic year 2020/2021 can be found here.

Created: 16. 7. 2009 / Modified: 6. 8. 2021 / Responsible person: ThDr. Jitka Sýkorová, Ph.D.