The Department of Molecular and Medical Genetics Graduate Program is designed to offer broad yet intensive training in the area of modern genetics and genomics. The program offers a range of training opportunities in molecular, cellular, developmental and human/medical genetics. The areas of faculty research include cancer genetics, molecular genetics, molecular diagnostics, developmental genetics, medical genetics, cytogenetics, quantitative trait genetics, biochemical genetics, cell biology and biochemistry.
Several laboratories focus on “tumor suppressor” and “oncogene” pathways involved in a variety of common human cancers, with one goal being to capitalize on this knowledge for translational research purposes. In addition, labs study DNA repair and genomic stability pathways, which when malfunctioning can lead to disease, most notably cancer. Other labs pursue gene therapy technologies to treat human disease is another emphasis. One central theme in the program is the utilization of a variety of genetic, molecular and cellular approaches for analyzing normal and disease processes. Students have the unique opportunity to gain exposure to various aspects of clinical genetic activities, including the cytogenetics lab and the Genetics Clinic. However, the emphasis of the graduate program is to immerse the student in the discipline of genetics by classroom, journal club and seminar activities in concert with providing a wide range of cutting edge research opportunities.
Molecular and Medical Genetics is a participating department in the Program in Molecular and Cellular Biosciences (PMCB) at Oregon Health & Science University. The PMCB program offers a joint admissions process and a standard first-year curriculum for the five participating departments. The purpose of the program is to offer students the flexibility to select first-year research rotations with any of the participating faculty to gain as much information and experience as possible before making the crucial selection of a topic and mentor for dissertation research.