Return to: Keck School of Medicine of USC
The objective of the PhD program in Medical Biology (MEDB) is to educate investigators to develop strategies to translate and implement knowledge from cellular, molecular and genetic advances into studies of normal human organ system function as well as mechanisms of human organ system dysfunction in disease and how to reverse this dysfunction by medical treatment. Animal disease models as well as clinical trials in patients are frequently used to advance this field.
The program applies multidisciplinary approaches to understanding the human organism as a whole. Breadth of medically related interests and training are major features of this track and wide and varied skills in many research areas characterize the faculty. To facilitate application of multidisciplinary approaches, close and regular contact between participating faculty and students is a major theme of this PhD program.
The MEDB program caters to MD/PhD students, clinician scientists and PIBBS students interested in but not limited to the following fields: immunology (including cancer immunology), virology (including cancer virology), microbiology, physiology and pathology (for example: diabetes, obesity, autoimmunity, infectious diseases, gastro-intestinal and liver diseases, heart and lung diseases, hypertension, central nervous system diseases, etc.)
Medical Biology students are required to complete 8 units from the following courses: INTD 504 , INTD 522 , INTD 549 , INTD 550 , INTD 551 , INTD 572 , INTD 573 or other courses approved by the faculty adviser. In the second and subsequent years, students are required to register in INTD 574 every fall and spring semester. In addition, students are required to complete at least 4 units of MEDB 794a Doctoral Dissertation , MEDB 794b Doctoral Dissertation .
PhD students must supplement course work by registering for MEDB 790 Research during the fall, spring and summer semesters as needed to complete the minimum 60 units required for the PhD program.
As part of the requirements for the PhD degree in Medical Biology, students must adhere to the unit/course requirements, guidance committee and dissertation committee guidelines and must complete the qualifying examination, annual research appraisal, and dissertation and oral defense as outlined in the sections following the descriptions of the PhD programs.