Welcome to the Department of Cell Biology and Physiology

Congratulations to the Department of Cell Biology & Physiology, ranked 2nd in the country in NIH funding!

Kechele ImageThe department was formed in July 2012 through the merger of the Department of Cell & Developmental Biology and the Department of Cell & Molecular Physiology. The new department brings together two strong traditions of excellence in basic science and translational research, and in pre- and post-doctoral training, including undergraduate, graduate and medical education.

The department currently houses two PhD programs: the Program in Cell & Molecular Physiology and the Program in Cell & Developmental Biology. In addition, a number of members of the department also train PhD students through the Neurobiology Curriculum and the Genetics and Molecular Biology Curriculum.

Department Highlight

Jeffrey Stirman, Ph.D., awarded a grant of $500,000 as part of the Burroughs Wellcome Fund’s Career Awards at the Scientific Interface (CASI) program.

Jeffrey StirmanThis award recognizes his excellent and important technical contributions to biomedical science, and will support his early career. Jeff’s early training was in physics, and he published several first-authors papers in the field. He later earned a PhD in Bioengineering, where he created sophisticated optical devices for patterned optogenetic stimulation of freely moving animals. Most recently, he developed new imaging technology to measure neural activity in different parts of the brain simultaneously, with single neuron resolution. He is using the system to better understand function of neural circuitry, and what might be disrupted in complex neurological diseases including autism. Jeff is a postdoc in Spencer Smith’s lab, which is part of the Department of Cell Biology and Physiology, the Neuroscience Center, and the Carolina Institute for Developmental Disabilities.