MBB Graduate Program

MBB Student in a lab

Students interested in understanding the molecular mechanisms that underlie human disease will find a home in the Molecular Biology and Biochemistry (MBB) Graduate Program. From cancer to host-pathogen interactions, our students study the proteins and pathways involved with an eye toward improving disease diagnosis, prevention and treatment.

MBB students are affiliated with the Department of Molecular Biology and Biophysics, which provides a rigorous, yet supportive community of faculty, students and staff to guide them through the Ph.D. degree process. MBB students also belong to a wider student community as members of the Biomedical Science Graduate Program at UConn Health.

The primary goal of the MBB Graduate Program is to train students for the broad range of careers available in biomedical science. Whether the graduate pursues a career in academic research, biomedical industry, teaching, government or any of the other careers now available to Ph.D.s in biomedical science, we have attempted to prepare them with a solid base of knowledge, critical thinking skills and the confidence in their abilities to be successful. Graduates are expected to have demonstrated a high degree of competence in research, as judged by publications in first-rank journals. They will have developed essential skills in identifying important research problems, planning appropriate experimental approaches, and effectively communicating their research results and their significance both orally and in written form. The success of our students in these areas is exemplified by the number of first-author publications in quality scientific journals and awards received both internally at UConn Health and from national and international conferences and societies. For example, MBB students have won four out of the last six Lepow Awards; an award given annually to the top graduate student in the entire Biomedical Science Graduate Program at UConn Health following their third year of training.

Support for Ph.D. students engaged in full-time degree programs is provided on a competitive basis. Graduate student research assistantships for 2017-2018 provide a stipend of $30,500 per year, which includes a waiver of tuition/University fees and a heavily subsidized comprehensive health and dental insurance policy.

For information on our faculty and research projects available in the MBB program, please visit our areas of research page. For information on requirements for completion of the Ph.D. degree in the MBB program, please see the Graduate Program in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Student Handbook. The handbook lists suggested courses, preliminary exam requirements, thesis exam requirements and other details about the program. For more information on life away from the lab, please visit the Beyond the Lab page.

For any other questions about our graduate program, please feel free to contact:

Irina Bezsonova, Ph.D.
Co-Director, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Graduate Program
bezsonova@uchc.edu
860-679-2769

Bing Hao, Ph.D.
Co-Director, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Graduate Program
bhao@uchc.edu
860-679-8364

Spotlight

Alex Rizzo (Korzhnev lab) is first author on PNAS article Rev7 dimerization is important for assembly and function of the Rev1/Polζ translesion synthesis complex.

Matt Zambrello (Hoch lab) and Anthar Darwish (Weller lab)  have successfully defended their doctoral theses.  Congratulations!

Katherine DiScipio and Mitali Adlakha (Weller lab) received Student Travel Award and Oral Presentation Award for American Society of Virology's 37th Annual Meeting, July 2018.

Gabi Valles (Bezsonova lab) won Finn Wold Travel Award to attend and present her research at the 32nd Annual Protein Society Symposium.

Dipika Gupta (Heinen lab) is first author on PNAS article ATR-Chk1 activation mitigates replication stress caused by mismatch repair-dependent processing of DNA damage.

Matt Zambrello's (Hoch lab) paper Nonuniform sampling in multidimensional NMR for improving spectral sensitivity was published in Methods.

Thomas Bregnard (Bezsonova lab) published his first paper, Active site-targeted covalent irreversible inhibitors of USP7 impair the functions of Foxp3+ T-regulatory cells by promoting ubiquitination of Tip60.

Sasha Pozhidaeva and Gabi Valles (Bezsonova lab) had their work featured on the cover of Cell Chemical Biology.