231 Albert Sabin Way | University of Cincinnati MSB, CARE, CVC| Cincinnati, OH 45267-0575 | (513) 558-2366 | Directions


Ph.D Program
Course Descriptions
Course Outline
Online Application
Doctoral Degree Program
Pharmacology Graduate Study: Our doctoral (Ph.D.) degree program is designed to provide training for the next generation of scientists, innovators, and leaders in pharmacology. Students will engage in a contemporary curriculum including thesis research training in faculty mentored research programs. Thesis research will involve novel therapeutic target discovery and adding new knowledge to existing chemical and biological molecular entities. Alumni of our training program have advanced to successful careers in academia and in pharmaceutical and governmental organizations.

Academic Program: Students complete a series of laboratory research rotations and build their knowledge foundation by completing basic and advanced courses in cell and molecular biology, receptor pharmacology, advanced topics in pharmacology, laboratory research methods, experimental design (including biostatistics, data analysis and interpretation), biotechnology, seminar presentations and "hot papers" journal club. Classes and research activities require full-time, year-round (12 month) commitment. Laboratory research rotations may begin as early as July 1 of the matriculation year. Ph.D. degree requirements can be completed in four years.

Thesis Research Areas: Faculty research programs offer students a wide array of choices for thesis research projects. These research programs involve mechanistic and quantitative aspects of potential and established drug targets and development of new biotechnologies for high impact disease interventions through the use of state-of-the-art biotechnology and pharmacological methods. Student thesis projects may include mechanistic and quantitative analyses of: cardiovascular pharmacology; neuropharmacology; immunopharmacology; molecular pharmacology of proteins/enzymes; molecular biology of hormones and drug receptors; molecular biology and pathophysiology of ion channels, pumps and exchangers; contractile and regulatory proteins; cancer pharmacology; environmental toxicology; translational pharmacology; protein chemistry and structural biology; gene therapy; stem cell therapy, etc. A variety of experimental diseases in transgenic and gene ablated/suppressed models from single molecules to entire organisms are used in research.

Research Resources: Students conduct thesis research supported by faculty, department, and institutional state-of-the-art biotechnology laboratory resources including research core facilities, high throughput screening for drug targets and drug entities, genomics, proteomics, gene array, bioinformatics, transgenics, MRI, ultrasound and confocal, imaging, and fluorescent cell sorting.

Student Faculty Ratio: Our doctoral program has a 1:1 student to faculty ratio assuring personal mentoring and interactions to closely advise and guide the professional development of each student to a career pathway tailored to his/her interests and strengths. Our students are among more than 350 other biomedical sciences graduate students within various programs in the College of Medicine which includes students pursuing combined MD/PhD degrees.
Placement of Graduates & Current Research Capacity
Pharmacology Careers: Our recent graduates are well placed in discovery research positions in fast-track career development. Our former graduates have become principal basic and clinical scientists and professors with outstanding research programs in pharmacology: some in drug discovery, translational medicine, and science education; others in government agencies (e.g. National Institutes of Health, Food & Drug Administration) as research scientists and program managers; and still others in internationally recognized pharmaceutical corporations (e.g., P&G, Eli Lilly) as directors of global research and development, clinical research programs, and translation of basic research discoveries leading to new product development and licensing. Also, our graduates have found positions such as patent law, officers, and medical writers.

UC's Research Rank and Reputation: Our program is top ranked in Ohio and is among the best in the Midwest. The National Science Foundation has ranked the University of Cincinnati in the top 25 of comprehensive public research universities in the US based on its more than $378 million in research awards for 2009. Eighty percent of these awards support research programs directed by biomedical sciences faculty.
Scholarships for all PhD Students
Financial Aid: Students accepted to our program for full-time studies are awarded tuition, health insurance and competitive 12-month research scholarships or assistantships (currently at $23,000). Qualified applicants may be nominated for additional stipend awards.
About the University of Cincinnati
Cost of Living: Cincinnati's cost of living is low compared with major US cities. For example, cost of living in New York City is 75% more, Seattle and Chicago are 35% more, and Tampa is 12% more. Even Cleveland and Columbus are nearly 10% more. For comparisons with your area use the calculator. On-campus, near-campus and mid-city residential accommodations are both contemporary in style and widely available at relatively low cost (e.g., $350 to $400 one-bedroom). New housing abounds adjacent to the university campus. All students can use Metro bus services free of charge within the city and metropolitan Cincinnati. Within campus and residence to campus free shuttle services operate on frequent schedules.

Cincinnati: Cincinnati, the "Queen City", is a vibrant and diverse riverfront city; one of the best-kept secrets in America. Interstate highways (I-71, I-74, and I-75) connect Cincinnati to many Midwest metropolitan areas. The international airport offers non-stop flights to national and international destinations. The city is a lively four-season entertainment venue. The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, Riverbend Music Center, Aronoff Performing Arts Center, Sports Teams (Cincinnati Reds, Bengals, Cyclones), Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, theaters, and art museums are among the cultural attractions.

University of Cincinnati Location and Campus Life: The University of Cincinnati is a leading 21st century urban research institution located on 473 acres with 117 buildings sited among expansive and interlinking sculptured green spaces, walkways, and watercourses. Architecturally notable new Cardiovascular Center of Excellence, Vontz Center of Molecular Sciences, and Crowley/CARE (Center of Academic Research Excellence) buildings anchor our Academic Health Center. The University of Cincinnati, with 35,000 students, offers myriad student-centered services and resources and is located in Cincinnati's Uptown District. Varsity (e.g., Bearcats football and basketball) and intramural club sports take place on campus in excellent new recreation and sports facilities. Campus life is enriched by faculty and student performances at the College Conservatory of Music.
Applying for Admission
Applicant Qualifications: Undergraduate students with majors in biological sciences, biochemistry, biophysics, biomedical engineering, chemical engineering, chemistry, life sciences, neuroscience, pharmacology, or pharmaceutical sciences leading to B.A. or B.S. degrees or students who have completed an M.S. degree are well qualified for admission to our pharmacology doctoral degree program. Students with GPA >3.0 and GRE above 70th percentile are encouraged to apply. Women and underrepresented minority students are particularly encouraged to apply. Previous biomedical research experience is beneficial but not required.

Application Process:
  1. Applicants may complete an online application to the University of Cincinnati Graduate School at www.grad.uc.edu - Admissions. Please be certain to select the doctoral degree program in Molecular, Cellular and Biochemical Pharmacology. Applications for the Autumn term may be submitted as early as December of the previous year.
  2. Submit official scores for the General Test of the Graduate Record Examinations, Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL, for foreign applicants only). University Code 1833.
  3. Official transcript(s) from each college or university attended should be forwarded to Ms. Nancy Thyberg, Pharmacology & Cell Biophysics, University of Cincinnati, 231 Albert Sabin Way, 5935 CVC, Cincinnati, OH 45267-0575.
  4. A minimum of 2 reference letters must be included as part of your online application process.
  5. Students who have been admitted to the M.D. / Ph.D. program may apply, simultaneously or subsequently, to the Pharmacology Ph.D. program.
  6. All documents should be received no later than February 1st for full consideration for admission to the graduate program beginning the following Autumn Quarter.
Notification of Acceptance: Successful applicants will be notified with offers of admission by March 15th and must respond by April 15th.

Inquiries and Correspondence: Director of Graduate Studies
Department of Pharmacology and Cell Biophysics
University of Cincinnati College of Medicine
231 Albert Sabin Way, Room #5935 CVC
Cincinnati, Ohio 45267-0575
Tel: 513-558-2333
Fax: 513-558-9969
Email contact: Nancy.Thyberg@uc.edu
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