Cell, Molecular, and Structural Biology, M.S, Ph.D.
The Graduate Program in Cell, Molecular and Structural Biology (CMSB) is a multidisciplinary, interdepartmental program of study and research leading to M.S. (with a thesis required) and Ph.D. degrees. The CMSB program brings together, from various departments at Miami University, faculty and students with broad interests in several areas of life sciences.
Participating Host Departments
The Cell, Molecular and Structural Biology (CMSB) Graduate Program brings together faculty and students from a variety of different departmental units at Miami University. This diversity of approach strengthens the interdisciplinary nature of the program and is in line with the nationally recognized increased need to integrate data and approaches from different scientific disciplines to maximize scientific insight and research outcome.
Students earn either a M.S. or Ph.D degree in Cell, Molecular, and Structural Biology (CMSB) but closely interact with one or more departments.
CMSB students are eligible for assistantships and will take courses in core areas of cell, molecular and structural biology. CMSB students will also attend both scientific and professional development-based seminars to prepare them for life after graduate training.
Students interested in the CMSB program should review the research interests of the CMSB faculty. Any CMSB faculty member may serve as a thesis/dissertation advisor.
CMSB Interests of Study Areas
- cell biology
- developmental biology
- genomics and bioinformatics
- molecular biology
- structural biology
- CMSB seminar
- pedagogy training
- one course from 3 of 4 core areas:
- cell biology
- molecular biology
- structural biology
- additional seminars and courses as determined by the student and committee
All Ph.D. students must pass a comprehensive examination and write and defend a dissertation research proposal.
All M.S. students must write and defend a thesis proposal. All students must present and defend their final dissertation or thesis.
Research and Research Facilities and Centers
Research is at the center of both the M. S. and Ph. D. degree programs. CMSB graduate students can choose to do their research in the laboratory of one of the more than 40 participating faculty members. Research questions encompass levels of organization ranging from whole organisms to cells and biological molecules. Graduate students and faculty pursue research questions using diverse organisms. Students in the CMSB Graduate Program have access to state-of-the-art research equipment and facilities including:
The Center for Advanced Microscopy and Imaging (CAMI) is an all-university research, teaching, and service facility located in Upham Hall on Miami University's main campus, in Oxford, Ohio. CAMI serves the microscopy needs of both the biological and materials communities. CAMI is available for use without charge to the Miami University community.
This 13,000-square-foot facility includes specific pathogen-free transgenic animal suites, two surgical rooms and adjacent treatment and prep areas, conventional animal rooms, and a separate wing housing wild-caught species. The staff includes five full-time employees plus student labor.
The Center for Bioinformatics and Functional Genomics is a state-of-the-art research and training facility available for all members of Miami University, with the goal of advancing research opportunities in all fields that intersect in molecular biology and big data bioinformatics. Its equipment, which includes an Illumina MiSeq, ONT minION, two Applied Biosystems capillary DNA sequencers, a BiomekFX robotic liquid handling system, qPCR thermocyclers, ancillary equipment to prepare NGS libraries, and several high-capacity Linux computer workstations for bioinformatic and other big data analyses.
Abundant growth space for plants utilized in research and teaching is available through over 13,000-ft2 square feet of glasshouse space and the Botany Department Plant Growth Chamber Facility. The Plant Growth Chamber Facility houses a total of 14 controlled environmental growth chambers of various dimensions, which provide ideal growth conditions for experimental plant populations the year round.
The Ohio Advanced EPR Laboratory was established upon the arrival and installation of a state of the art Bruker® ELEXSYS E580 spectrometer. The lab contains a Bruker® Elexsys E580 capable of pulsed EPR spectrometry, EMX X- and Q- band, and EMX X-band spectrometers capable of continuous wave EPR spectrometry.
Willard Sherman Turrell Herbarium
The Willard Sherman Turrell Herbarium's (Ohio's largest) holdings of approximately 620,000 specimens are worldwide in both geographical and taxonomic coverage. The collection consists of 330,000 vascular plant specimens, as well as 140,000 bryophytes, 100,000 fungi, 35,000 lichens, 10,000 algae, and 5,000 fossil plants. There are several thousand type specimens contained in the collection, as well as many sets of cryptogamic exsiccatae. Active exchange programs are ongoing with many herbaria worldwide to ensure the continued breadth and depth of the collection.
The Ohio Eminent Scholars Program and Miami University created the High Field Magnetic Resonance Laboratory in 2006, purchasing the first Bruker® US2 850-MHz nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometer in North America. The lab also contains a Bruker® 600-MHz NMR spectrometer, a Bruker® X-ray diffractometer, and an Agilent® micrOTOF mass spectrometer.
The Instrumentation Laboratory is a well-equipped and staffed facility that handles equipment maintenance and repair and constructs specialized equipment to meet individual needs.
The Miami University Libraries contain an extensive collection of information, including books, maps, sound recordings, journals, magazines, newspapers, movies, videos, DVDs, and microfilm. Miami University is also part of OhioLINK that provides free electronic access to 12,000 electronic journals as well as thousands of books and other materials. The Brill Science Library contains materials related to the sciences, mathematics, and technology.
The Miami University Center for Neuroscience and Behavior is an interdisciplinary research center dedicated to promoting neuroscience research, as well as to train graduate students for a career in developmental, cellular, molecular, and/or behavioral neuroscience.
Tissue Culture Facility
A dedicated tissue culture facility consisting of several Forma Scientific® and NuAire® laminar flow tissue culture hoods, double-chamber Nuaire® water-jacketed CO2 incubators, a Hund/Wetzlar® Wilovert inverted microscope and freezers (-20 °C), refrigerators, water baths, bench-top centrifuges, and liquid N2 cell storage vessels. A separate room is dedicated to mouse embryonic stem cell culture, gene targeting and pre-implantation mouse embryo manipulation and transgenesis.
The Center for Visual Sciences at Miami University (CVSMU) seeks to promote research and education in all aspects of visual science through outreach programs, collaboration and sponsorship of research, and seminar presentations. The CVSMU works together with other centers in the area as well as non-profit organizations such as Prevent Blindness Ohio.
Institute for Development and Commercialization of Advance Sensor Technology (IDCAST)
Miami University is also a partner in IDCAST. Led by the University of Dayton, IDCAST is a center in remote sensing and CBRNE sensing technology. Established by a $28-million State of Ohio Third Frontier Grant, IDCAST brings remote sensor and CBRNE sensor technology to market. Through innovative collaborations of academia, Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), and industry IDCAST conducts sensor research.