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Cell and Molecular Biology Research

cell-1.jpgThe Department of Cell and Molecular Biology at UMMC is comprised of 14 regular faculty members and two instructors, three members with joint appointments in the Cancer Center and Research Institute, two who are primarily education-focused, and six adjunct faculty members from the Departments of Physiology, Preventive Medicine, and Neurology and the School of Nursing.

The faculty use various model systems for their work, such as cell and molecular models, zebrafish and rodent models. Their studies are supported by grants from National Institutes of Health and private foundations such as the American Heart Association.  

The CMB faculty research interests focus these areas: 

  1. the thermodynamics and hydrodynamics of protein-protein interactions 
  2. drug development and delivery  
  3. histone structure and function 
  4. Cajal bodies and RNA processing and their role in mediating diseases such as preeclampsia 
  5. mitochondrial function in the microbiome and heart 
  6. molecular mechanisms of cancer  
  7. mechanisms responsible for tooth development 
  8. mechanisms responsible for sex differences in blood pressure control 
  9. adipose tissue and its role in mediating metabolic disease  
  10. role of microRNAs in mediating adiposity, obesity and hypertension 
  11. role of lipids in various disease processes 

See individual faculty pages for details.  

The Cell and Molecular Biology Department also houses four research core facilities located in the Guyton Research Complex:  

  • Analytical Ultracentrifugation Core  
  • Animal and Telemetry Core 
  • Confocal Microscopy Core 
  • Mitochondrial Research Core 

Graduate research mission statement 

The overall objective of the PhD program in cell and molecular biology is for each student to achieve competency in both the coursework and research components of the program and develop critical thinking and communication skills. With this knowledge base and skill set, graduating students will be equipped to pursue a variety of different career options. 

To ensure that each student meets the objective of the PhD program, many different competencies will be evaluated.