Highlights

We appreciate your interest, and invite you to explore the numerous research opportunities available with our Department. Below are a few highlights to get you started.

Funding

In 2012, the Department received over $19.6 million in funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). According to the Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research (BRIMR), our Department ranks fourth among all Biochemistry departments in the US, up from seventh in 2011.

Faculty

Over 30 professors represent the primary faculty, with another dozen or so faculy with joint-appointments. Among the primary faculty there are two members of the National Academy of Sciences and many who have been recipients of prestigious awards from the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Keck, Beckman, Sloan, Pew, and Searle foundations.

Students

We have a large and vibrant PhD program with more than 70 students from all over the United States and around the world. After their first year in the Biological and Biomedical Sciences Program (BBSP), students can matriculate directly to the Biochemistry & Biophysics graduate program, as well as to one of several interdisciplinary training programs. Students interested in our Biochemistry Track can design a flexible program that potentially exposes them to current research in biochemical, molecular, cell biological and biophyscial concepts.  They can also apply to one of many training grants appropriate to their area of interest.  For the Biophysics Track, the Molecular & Cellular Biophysics Predoctoral Training Program affords participating students the opportunity to work with faculty in eleven UNC departments, including Physics, Chemistry, Computer Sciences, Applied Mathematics and Medicinal Chemistry. The aim of this program is to apply mechanistic and quantitative approaches to medically significant problems. Students who are specifically interested in biophysics may wish to apply to this program as well, particularly if they would like to take full advantage of the biophysics training curriculum or wish to have the option of working with biophysics faculty in departments other than Biochemistry & Biophysics.

Research

The department has broad research strengths, but with particular emphasis in four areas: 1) chromatin biochemistry, DNA processes including replication, repair, recombination, remodeling and transcription; 2) cell signaling and cell cycle control, trafficking and retroviruses; 3) enzymology, protein biochemistry and biophysics and, 4) proteomic, structural and computational biology.

Core Facilities

UNC has an exceptionally strong research infrastructure with a wide range of core facilities, including outstanding resources in structural bioinformatics, microscopy, functional genomics, macromolecular interactions, as well as proteomics and mass spectrometry. Our department members specifically oversee the following cores: R.L. Juliano Structural Bioinformatics CoreBiomolecular NMR Labthe Macromolecular Interactions Facility, and a new High Throughput Peptide Synthesis and Array Facility.