Jan 26, 2022  
2018-2019 University Catalog 
2018-2019 University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Cell and Molecular Biology – DO/PhD

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USciences has partnered with the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) to offer a combined doctor of osteopathic medicine (DO)/PhD cell and molecular biology degree. The degree is designed to train physician scientists to perform fundamental research on human health issues, speed translational research to clinical practice, or develop related approaches. The degree consists of a 2-3-2 model of education, combining two years of medical education, three years of research in the cell and molecular biology PhD program resulting in a body of novel and significant research that is defendable as a completed dissertation, and two years of clinical experiential education; students in this degree program must complete the PhD degree requirements before proceeding to the clinical experience. The degree requires completion of 20 didactic credits and at least 20 credits of research. Students may choose a mentor from among the graduate faculty members of the Department of Biological Sciences or affiliated faculty members at PCOM. Applicants for this program must apply directly to PCOM for the DO program, respond to the invitation for additional application materials and will be evaluated simultaneously for the DO degree and the PhD degree tracks.  An applicant must be judged to be acceptable for DO education in order to be admitted to the combined DO/PhD degree track.


The courses required consist of the requirements of the first two years of the DO education, the core courses outlined above, a minimum of 20 credits of doctoral research, and electives that complete the required number of credits or as directed by the Research Advisory Committee. The PhD portion of this degree program follows the policies established for other graduate degree programs at USciences including those that specifically refer to the DO/PhD degree option.

Courses from other programs may be elected with permission of the program director; it is the responsibility of the student to fulfill course prerequisites. PhD students must complete at least 6 credits at the 800 level. Program electives include:

In addition to the program core outlined above, the PhD students will complete the following courses:

Faculty – Graduate Biological Sciences Programs

Shivendra Sahi 
BS (Gorakhpur University, India); PhD (North Carolina State University)
Professor of Biology
Chair, Biological Sciences  
Phone: 215.596.7417
E-mail: s.sahi@usciences.edu      
Research: focuses on understanding uptake and transport mechanisms of excess phosphorus and heavy metals in plants and developing remediation strategies against thee pollutants  

Ara DerMarderosian
BS, MS (Massachusetts College of Pharmacy); PhD (University of Rhode Island)
Professor Emeritus of Pharmacognosy
Research Professor Emeritus of Medicinal Chemistry
Phone: 215.596.8915
E-mail: a.dermar@usciences.edu

Grace Farber
BS (Rider University); PhD (University of Pittsburgh) 
Assistant Professor of Biology
Director, General Education  
Co-director, Neuroscience Program 
Phone: 267.295.3157
E-mail: g.farber@usciencs.edu 
Research: scholarship of teaching and learning 

Matthew J. Farber 
BS (Seton Hall University); PhD (University of Pittsburgh) 
Assistant Professor of Biology
Director, Brewing Science Program
Phone: 215.596.7452
E-mail: m.farber@usciences.edu    
Research: applications of microbiology and biotechnology in brewing science  

Jason Heindl
BA (Amherst College), PhD (Harvard University)
Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences
E-mail: j.heindl@usciences.edu
Research: Agrobacterium tumefaciens

Christopher Janetopoulos
BS (Augustana College); PhD (Texas A & M University)
Associate Professor of Biology
Phone: 215.895.3118
E-mail: c.janetopoulos@usciences.edu
Research: The establishment and maintenance of  polarity during migration and  cell division. Techniques: Molecular biology, biochemistry, high-end fluorescence microscopy and advanced microfluidic techniques in single and multi-cellular organisms.

Margaret R. Kasschau
BA (University of Rochester); MS, PhD (University of South Carolina)
Professor Emeritus of Biology
E-mail: m.kassch@usciences.edu

Zachary Klase
BS (Rutgers University); PhD (George Washington University)
Assistant Professor of Biology
E-mail: z.klase@usciences.edu
Phone: 215.596.8521
Research: human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-1) pathogenesis; control of viral transcription, interaction with the human immune system and the effect of RNA interference on viral replication.

Zhijun Li
BS, MS (Tsinghua University, China); PhD (Vanderbilt University)
Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Director, Graduate Program in Bioinformatics
Phone: 215.596.7539
E-mail: z.li@usciences.edu
Research: Research: focuses on generation and analysis of 3D structures and proteins using computational and bioinformatics tools. His group relies on a broad range of techniques to tackle complex biological problems in multiple dimensions.

Suzanne K. Murphy
BA (Rosemont College); PhD (Hahnemann University) 
Professor of Biology
Dean, Misher College of Arts and Sciences
Director, Pre-Health Professions Programs

Phone: 215.596.8921
E-mail: s.murphy@usciences.edu
Research: analysis of expression of the ras oncogene; perturbations in signal transduction pathways and expression of heat shock proteins

Kenneth Myers
BS (Philadelphia University); PhD (Drexel University)
Associate Professor of Biology
Co-Director, Cell Biology and Biotechnology Graduate Programs
Phone: 215.596.7531
E-mail: k.myers@usciences.edu
Research: microtube dynamics of endothelial cells in branching and directed motility; interactions with the extracellular matrix; high-resolution light and fluorescence microscopy 

Dana Pape-Zambito
BA (University of Delaware); PhD (Pennsylvania State University)
Associate Professor of Biology
Phone: 267.295.3173
E-mail: d.zambito@usciences.edu
Research: breast cancer initiation and progression; mammary gland development and lactation; influence of endocrine disrupter hormones

Margaret Pearce
BS (Le Moyne College), PhD (SUNY Upstate Medical University)
Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences
E-mail: m.pearce@usciences.edu
Research: neuroscience

Bela Peethambaran
BTech (St. Xavier’s College, India); MS (Gujarat University, India); PhD (Mississippi State University)
Associate Professor of Biology
Co-Director, Cell Biology and Biotechnology Graduate Programs  
Phone: 215.596.8923
E-mail: b.peethambaran@usciences.edu
Research: plant metabolic engineering for antioxidant and bioactive compound production; manipulation of plant signaling pathways to enhance stress responses; anti-cancer activities of plant extracts 

C. Nicole Sunnen
BS (University of Guelph, Canada); PhD (Baylor College of Medicine)
Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences
Phone: 215.596.7420
E-mail: c.sunnen@usciences.edu
Research: molecular mechanisms of neurodevelopment and disease; epilepsy; STEM education


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