Graduate Program

All students in the Basic Science Departments in the Medical School and the Biological Sciences Divisions in Biology and Chemistry enter graduate school through the Biological & Biomedical Sciences Program (BBSP). During the first year students take courses and complete 3 rotations in labs from any of the participating departments or curricula.

After identifying a research mentor, if that faculty member is affilitated with the Pharmacology Department, students can choose to join the Pharmacology Graduate Program. Once in the program, students complete required coursework and qualifying examinations, propose a research topic, choose a dissertation committee, and engage in dissertation research. The anticipated duration of training is 5 years.

Our Graduate Program is dedicated to the training of outstanding scientists in the pharmacological sciences. An outstanding graduate program is a high priority of our department, and the training faculty participate fully at all levels. Our department ranks consistently in the highest levels of NIH funding for pharmacology departments nationwide and a great diversity of research areas is available to trainees. These areas include: Cell Surface Receptors, G Proteins, Protein Kinases and Signal Transduction Mechanisms; Neuropharmacology; Nucleic Acids, Cancer & Antimicrobial Pharmacology; and Experimental Therapeutics. Cell and molecular approaches are particularly strong, but systems-level research such as behavioral pharmacology and analysis of knock-in and knock-out mice is also well-represented. Excellent physical facilities are available for all research areas.

Students completing the training program will have acquired basic knowledge of pharmacology and related fields, in-depth knowledge in their dissertation research area, the ability to evaluate scientific literature, mastery of a variety of laboratory procedures, skill in planning and executing an important research project in Pharmacology, and the ability to communicate results, analysis, and interpretation. These skills provide a sound basis for successful scientific careers in academia, government, or industry.