Welcome to the MCDB Program
The Graduate Program in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology (MCDB) prepares students for careers as research scientists and educators in an academic or industrial environment. MCDB is interdisciplinary in nature and includes the combined talents of more than 130 Ph.D. students and 170 faculty from more than 25 departments in six colleges:
- Biological, Mathematical, and Physical Sciences
- Veterinary Medicine
- Food, Agriculture, and Environmental Sciences
MCDB offers a course of study leading to the doctoral degree. Research training is very diverse and major areas of study include: Cancer Biology, Cell Biology, Developmental Biology, DNA Replication and Repair, Gene Expression, Molecular Medicine, Molecular Neurobiology, Plant Molecular Biology, RNA Biology, and Virology. In collaboration with the College of Medicine's Medical Scientist Program, a combined M.D./Ph.D. degree program is available.
MCDB emphasizes an integrative approach to the discipline, encompassing the molecular, cellular, and organismal levels of organization. A typical graduate program begins with an intensive first year of study consisting of core courses in molecular biology, cell biology, developmental biology, and biochemistry, followed by some additional elective coursework in the second year.
However, the bulk of training involves laboratory research. Most students perform three lab rotations before selecting a research advisor at the end of Spring Quarter in the first year.
It is the philosophy of the MCDB faculty that all active doctoral students should be provided with financial support. Students selected for admission receive Program support during rotations, and are subsequently supported by their research advisors. Outstanding incoming students are eligible for a variety of fellowships and supplemental support, such as University Fellowships. Support typically includes a generous stipend plus tuition and fees. Please see the "Financial Support" page for further information.