DPhi Studentship Risk of professional rugby players developing knee, hip and foot osteoarthritis

Supervisors: Professor Nigel Arden and Dr Julia Newton

Overview of Project

This studentship will contribute to the Rugby Study, which forms part of the research activities of the recently created Arthritis Research UK Centre for Sport, Exercise & Osteoarthritis. This is an observational study, which will determine whether professional rugby players are at increased risk of knee, hip and foot osteoarthritis. The study will involve a large postal questionnaire to current and retired professional rugby players in the UK. A sample of responders will be requested to attend for radiographs of knees, hips and feet and the prevalence of osteoarthritis at these three sites will be compared to data from established large UK cohorts. The successful candidate will agree the details of their PhD question in collaboration with their supervisors.

Based in the Musculoskeletal Epidemiology Unit, Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences University of Oxford, the student will join a vibrant, multidisciplinary team focused on furthering our understanding of osteoarthritis and sport.

The studentship will be supervised jointly by Prof Nigel Arden and Dr Julia Newton and will be supported by a Research Associate.

Informal enquiries may be made to Professor Arden by email or telephone.


Applicants should hold a degree (or equivalent) in epidemiology or a related applied science discipline relevant to this study. Due to funding restrictions the studentship is open to UK or EU students who are eligible for home/EU fees. Applicants must have or expect to obtain a first or upper second class (2:i), or equivalent, in their bachelor’s degree. You will also need to provide evidence of competence in English language, if English is not your first language.

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Funding details

Duration 3 years

Value of award: Tuition and College Fees (at home/ EU rate) and annual stipend of £15,000.

How to apply

Candidates must apply for the Studentship through the University of Oxford online Graduate Application system (DPhil in Musculoskeletal Sciences). The application form, all supporting materials, including references, CV and a copy of the research proposal, must be received

by the deadline. To access the application guidelines and form, please visit the Apply link below.

Under ‘Departmental Studentship Applications’ on the application form, you should indicate that you are applying for a studentship and enter the reference code for this studentship: 2013 MSK/NDORMS04.

The successful candidate will be assigned a place at Lady Margaret Hall and should therefore nominate LMH as their preferred college choice on the application form.

Closing date for applications: Friday 19 July 2013

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