Microbiology and Immunology
The Department of Microbiology and Immunology is a multidisciplinary department encompassing the areas of cellular and molecular immunology, virology, microbial genetics, and pathogenic bacteriology. The department currently consists of 27 primary faculty and 26 secondary faculty and is currently recruiting additional scientists.
The goals of the department’s graduate program are to provide each student with the opportunity to acquire the theoretical background and conceptual framework with the technical research skills necessary to attain a PhD. During the first year of study, a broad educational base in all disciplines together with laboratory rotations introduce students to the diverse array of research topics. Students then choose one area of concentration for their research. The varied interests of the faculty provide numerous opportunities for student participation and a broad choice in dissertation research.
Active research in immunology includes the areas of cytotoxicity, programmed cell death, cytokine receptor signaling, clinical and experimental bone marrow transplantation, stem cell biology, gene therapy for cancer treatment, antigen recognition, cell differentiation and communication, aging of the immune system, interleukins, genetic control of immunoglobulin production, gene activation, and evolution of the immune response. Research in other areas includes molecular biology of virus-host interaction in both animal and human systems, control and regulation of bacterial pathogenesis, selective tumor chemotherapy and radiation therapy, and therapy of parasitic infections.
Training in the graduate program is comprised of required course work, elected course work, seminars and research. In addition, students participate in teaching and journal clubs. Students are required to present their experimental work annually to the faculty and their peers at special work-in-progress seminars. All students are encouraged to participate in the Eastern Student Research Forum held annually at the University of Miami and organized and staffed by graduate students from all the basic science departments. Each year, internationally recognized scientists visit the department as guests participating in our Special Seminar Series to meet and discuss science with the graduate students. As each of our graduate students progress in their work they are expected to attend national meetings to present their ongoing research.