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Ph.D. in Genetics and Development

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  • Course description
    The Field of G&D enrolls 8-15 new students per year into its Ph.D. program, which has been supported by a National Institutes of Health training grant for nearly 30 years.  There are 51 faculty in G&D, half of whom are in the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics (MBG) with the rest from the following departments or units:
    • Biomedical Engineering,
    • Biomedical Sciences,
    •  Biological Statistics & Computational Biology,
    • Boyce Thompson Institute,
    • Division of Nutrition, Entomology,
    • Ecology & Evolutionary Biology,
    • James Baker Institute, Microbiology,
    • Neurobiology & Behavior,
    • Plant Biology,
    • Plant Breeding & Genetics,
    • and Vet Clinical Sciences.
    Viewed broadly, Field Members in G&D seek to uncover the fundamental genetic, developmental, and cell biological principles that govern life.  G&D research is devoted to understanding the mechanisms of inheritance, cell determination, mutation, gene regulation, population structure, and evolution.  Such analyses provide powerful tools that can be applied to a wide range of biological questions including developmental biology, a major focus of the field.
    One group of Field members utilizes genetic, biochemical, molecular, and cell biological methods to study fundamental cellular processes, such as DNA replication, mitosis, organelle biology, transcription, and membrane trafficking.  A second group uses such methods to study morphogenesis, behavior, and stem cell function.  A third group uses computational, genomic, statistical, and population genetic approaches to study the function and evolution of genes and networks in model organisms and humans.  A variety of model organisms are employed including bacteria, yeasts, fruit flies, nematodes, plants, and mice.  Field members utilize contemporary technologies including imaging, structural, genome array, large-scale sequencing, and nanobiotechnology.  This collection of research interests and technologies has resulted in a large number of vibrant collaborations among Field members.

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