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Graduate Programs in the Biomedical Sciences Saint Louis University School of Medicine

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Graduate Programs in the Biomedical Sciences

Saint Louis University School of Medicine


In 1998, the four Ph.D. granting programs in the biomedical sciences at the St. Louis University School of Medicine established a First-Year Core Curriculum for all entering doctoral students. All students apply to the Core Program and, upon acceptance, begin a year of multidisciplinary coursework and four formal laboratory rotations that lead to the selection of a graduate advisor and entry into one of the four, distinct Ph.D. programs. The first year courses focus on the basic biochemical, molecular, cellular and organismal aspects of the biomedical sciences. This prepares the student for more intensive, individualized instruction, unique to the discipline they choose to study further in the following years. Instructors come from all four Ph.D. programs and their charge is to introduce the students to the most recent findings in their fields including not only the current level of knowledge in the field, but also the methodologies used to study the major issues in their discipline. Our emphasis is on the preparation of technically skilled and thoughtful scientists for diverse careers in academia, industry or government.

The four Ph.D. programs that the students may access upon completion of their first year of study are:

Biochemistry and Molecular BiologyMolecular Microbiology and ImmunologyPathologyPharmacological and Physiological Sciences.


Timeline of Graduate Studies

First Year Core Curriculum Including Lab Rotations

Application for


(Applicants with Advanced Degrees)

Second Academic Year

in a Chosen Departmental Program

Qualifying Exams at End of Year Two

Completion of Original Research

Doctorate Defense

(Average time to graduation: 5 years)



Fall SemesterSpring Semester

BBSG 501 Lecture BBSG 503 Lecture

Macromolecules Fundamentals of Cell Biology

DNA Cellular Neuroscience

Genetics Cell Signaling

RNA processing Nuclear Signaling and Cancer

Bioenergetics Systems Biology

Development Virology


BBSG 502 Special Topics BBSG 504 Special Topics

Small group discussion Small group discussion

of classic literature of current literature

BBSG 592 Colloquium BBSG 592 Colloquium

BBSG 597 Lab Rotations BBSG 597 Lab Rotations

Summer Semester

RM 610 Biostatistics

BBSG 597 Bioinformatics


Edward A. Doisy Department of

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

(314) 977-9200

Dr. Enrico Di Cera

Professor and Chair


(314) 977-8850

Dr. William Wold

Professor and Chair

Research in the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology reflects the strength and diversity of its faculty through a unifying focus of the study of host-pathogen interactions, especially in the area of virology. Areas of interest include viral pathogenesis, immunology, molecular and cellular biology, vaccine development (discovery and clinical trials), biodefense, and cancer gene therapy. The virology program is one of the strongest in the USA, and it encompasses research on adenoviruses, flaviviruses, hepatitis B and C viruses, herpesviruses (herpes simplex virus, Varicella Zoster virus), HIV, and poxviruses (including model studies for smallpox). Other research addresses parasites (T. cruzi), fungi, cell cycle regulation, programmed cell death (apoptosis), and the role of mitochondrial mutations in disease.


The Department of Pathology offers a graduate program in molecular pathobiology leading to the Doctor of Philosophy degree. The faculty work closely with graduate students in the department to assist them in acquiring the requisite academic background and practical laboratory skills for successful research careers in academics, industry, medicine or government. Excellent research facilities for cellular and molecular studies in pathobiology are available in the department. Facilities include fluorescence and confocal microscopy, flow cytometry, tissue culture facilities, video image analysis, and an EM lab equipped with both scanning and transmission microscopes. Departmental faculty maintain research collaborations with colleagues in the academic and industrial community which further broadens opportunities and exposure to technical skills and research expertise for graduate students.

(314) 577-8475

Dr. Carole Vogler

Professor and Chair


The Department of Pharmacological and Physiological Science is a major participant in the current excitement involving research in modern biomedical science. The faculty in the department have diversified backgrounds in the fields of biochemistry, medicine, molecular biology, neuroscience, pharmacology and physiology. A common theme involves the physiology, pathophysiology and pharmacology of intracellular and intercellular communication. Major areas of specialization include: neurotransmitter biochemistry, physiology and pharmacology; molecular biology, biochemistry and pharmacology of neurotransmitter, autocoid, neurohumoral and hormone receptors; intracellular signaling and transduction mechanisms; electrophysiology and ion channels; neurochemistry; cardiovascular and circulatory control mechanisms; regulation and function of the autonomic, somatic and central nervous systems; molecular, cellular and endocrine control mechanisms; respiratory physiology; neuropharmacology and drugs of abuse.

(314) 977-6400

Dr. Thomas Burris

Professor and Chair



Postdoctoral Fellowships

National Institute of Environmental Health Northwestern University

University of Calgary University of Colorado

Harvard University Mass Inst Tech (MIT)

Washington University Rockefeller University

Cornell University Med College Georgia

University of Wisconsin UCLA

Johns Hopkins University of Arizona

Academic Faculty Positions

Saint Louis University Texas Tech University

John Jay College, NY Washington University

University of Colorado Health Sci Oklahoma State University

University of Virginia Med College of WIsconsin

Industry Positions

Glaxo Smith Kline Sigma Aldrich

Allergan Bristol Meyers Squibb

Organon Merck

Patton Boggs (Law firm) Monsanto

Covidien Pfizer


Core Graduate Program

in the Biomedical Sciences

Saint Louis University

School of Medicine


Dr. W.K. Samson

Director (314) 977-8677

[email protected]

Lindsay Oliver

Administrative Assistant

(314) 977-8678

[email protected]

Information, Links to Departments and

Application Forms are available at: