This is an exciting time to be a graduate student in Pharmacology. We are witnessing extraordinary changes in the way we think about and conduct science, with the completion of the human genome project and its far-reaching consequences. This is leading new initiatives in genomics, proteomics and molecular modeling. As these areas develop and new technologies evolve for their study, they will be incorporated into the language of pharmacology as exciting new sub-disciplines such as pharmacogenomics. This, in turn, will be reflected in our curriculum, which will provide our graduate students with the intellectual foundation and research tools for making important contributions to pharmacology and for becoming the leaders in the new molecular era.
Our graduate program provides students with the scientific training and knowledge base geared toward making original contributions in the understanding of how drugs and other chemicals affect living processes. (For more information about the discipline of pharmacology, see the ASPET website where you can download the brochure, "Explore Pharmacology".)
A key feature of the program is the application of modern scientific approaches in areas such as structural biology, bioinformatics and molecular and cell biology to wide-ranging scientific problems ranging from the molecular to the organismal level. In particular, students have the opportunity, to focus on specific areas of clinical or applied significance, including Cell Signaling/Cancer Biology, Drug Disposition/Toxicology, and Functional Genomics.
The program is particularly well suited to students interested in studying basic life processes at a mechanistic level, as well as those students whose research is at the molecular/cellular level, yet requires an understanding of the whole organism for its full appreciation. Pharmacology is an ideal program for M.D./Ph.D. students seeking a natural link between the basic and clinical sciences, and for students interested in careers in biotechnology or the pharmaceutical industry.
The Department of Cell and Molecular Pharmacology/Medical University have well equipped research laboratories and facilities. Equipment available for research training includes state-of-the art mass spectrometry facilities within our nationally funded Proteomics Center, including: matrix assisted laser description TOF-MS, electrospray mass spectrometers and triple quadrupole mass spectrometers for use in protein structure and proteomics assays; TOF-TOF MS and 2-D gel electorphoresis instrumentation; 400, 600 and 800 MHz NMR spectrometers; FT-IR, UV, infrared, and circular dichroism spectrometers; high-pressure liquid chromatographs; scanning spectrophotofluorometers; computers; high-voltage electrophoresis equipment; and ultracentrifuges. Additional facilities include microarray; lipidomics; transgenic/knockout mouse; small animal imaging; and molecular imaging, including confocal scanning and transmission electron microscopy.
Applicants to the program should have a strong academic record with emphasis in biological or physical sciences or pharmacy. Undergraduate training in organic chemistry, calculus, biology, and physics is advantageous. Applicants may enter the program as students working toward the Ph.D., the combined Ph.D. and M.D. degrees (Medical Scientist Training Program), or the combined Ph.D. and D.M.D. degrees (Dental Medicine Scientist Training Program). Stipends are available.