Nathalie Sumien, PhD, Graduate Advisor
Center for BioHealth, Room 517
The Pharmacology and Neuroscience graduate program offers both Master of Science (MS) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degrees in a wide range of research areas. Pharmacology is a discipline that bridges the basic and clinical sciences. Classically, pharmacologists sought to understand the pharmacological responses, mechanisms and clinical uses of drugs. In recent decades, the scope of pharmacology has expanded dramatically and includes cutting edge research in signal transduction and molecular biology.
With the “graying of America,” society is faced with increasing numbers of individuals affected with disorders of the nervous system. For example, it is estimated that by the year 2050, the number of individuals age 65 and over with Alzheimer’s disease could range from 11 to 16 million. Research in neuroscience includes efforts aimed at delineating the mechanisms of these debilitating neurological and neurodegenerative diseases, as well as fundamental studies to gain understanding of how the brain functions. The Pharmacology and Neuroscience graduate program has active research activities in these areas, as well as in cellular and molecular signaling, endocrinology, molecular and behavioral analysis of substance abuse, and new drug discovery.
Students accepted into the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (GSBS) will be given one semester to identify a mentor and a home program. Students with a variety of academic backgrounds may gain acceptances to the Pharmacology and Neuroscience program, providing they have completed a number of prerequisite courses. All students entering the program will complete an integrated biomedical science core curriculum that includes fundamental principles of biomedical sciences. Following the completion of the core curriculum, students may choose from a number of advanced courses in Pharmacology and Neuroscience that are related to their individual research interests. Students will also be mandated to participate in seminars, work-in-progress presentations and group discussions of current research topics, and will be trained in a number of techniques required to address existing research problems in Pharmacology and Neuroscience. Both MS and PhD students will conduct original, publishable research and will be expected to present their results at national scientific conferences.
Completion of the MS degree typically requires two to three years; the PhD degree is generally completed in four to five years. Students who successfully complete a graduate degree in Pharmacology and Neuroscience will be well prepared for careers in academic and government research laboratories, as well as in the pharmaceutical/ biotechnology industry.