Clinical Molecular Geneticists

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Clinical molecular geneticists are responsible for detecting, analysing and interpreting disease-linked genetic abnormalities within patients via molecular biological and biochemical screening.

Clinical molecular geneticists analyse patients’ DNA specimens via a variety of techniques such as fragment analysis, DNA sequencing and mutation detection. Most of their work is laboratory-based. Other responsibilities include:

  • using a variety of tests and diagnostic procedures to determine genotypes (the genetic make-up of individuals) and/or identify genetic diseases

  • supervising and training junior laboratory staff and medical technical officers

  • recording and analysing quality control data

  • keeping up to date with developments in the profession

  • attending conferences and relevant training sessions

  • liaising with colleagues and other healthcare professionals

  • carrying out research and development

  • analysing and interpreting DNA test results

  • writing reports that outline test results for use by GPs, paediatricians and consultants


Qualifications and training required


You will need a 2.1 in a medical or life science degree such as biochemistry, genetics, molecular biology, biotechnology, physiology, medicine or biomedical science. It is essential to have studied genetics on your degree and a relevant postgraduate qualification can be beneficial.

Research work, hospital laboratory placements and experience gained using relevant scientific and analytical techniques can be particularly helpful.


Key skills for clinical molecular geneticists


  • Problem solving

  • Communication skills

  • An analytical and inquisitive mind

  • Teamworking skills

  • Research skills

  • Good IT skills


Typical employers of clinical molecular geneticists


  • The NHS

  • Universities

  • Government agencies

  • Pharmaceutical, biotechnology, food, energy, water, horticultural and environmental companies


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