Ph.D. Program

Didactic Training: Course descriptions can be found in the Graduate Studies Bulletin. Ph.D. students in Cellular and Integrative Physiology must complete a compulsory core curriculum composed of the following courses: Macromolecular Structure and Function (BRTP 821), The Cell and Gene Regulation (BRTP 822), Molecular Cell Biology (BRTP 823), Cell Signaling (BRTP 824), Graduate Physiology (CIP 806) and two advanced physiology electives (CIP 914-930). Students must also register each semester for Physiology Seminar (CIP 970). The student's supervisory committee defines additional course requirements on an individual basis. Students must achieve a grade point average of "B" (3.0) or better in all graduate-level courses.

Research Training: During the first year of graduate study, students complete two semesters of Research Other Than Thesis (CIP 896), which entails a research rotation in a different laboratory each semester. These research rotations introduce the student to research, in terms of specific questions and techniques as well as general aspects of research strategies and problem solving. After completion of the rotations, students select a faculty advisor and laboratory for their dissertation research project. The Department of Cellular and Integrative Physiology faculty provide research expertise in a variety of fields, including cardiovascular physiology (cellular cardiac electrophysiology, microvascular function, neural control of circulation), neuroscience (chemoreceptors in cardio-respiratory control), renal physiology (ion transport, mesangial cell function, neural control of volume homeostasis, renal microcirculation), reproductive endocrinology and visual physiology. Several laboratories focus on pathophysiological mechanisms associated with disease (e.g., acute renal failure, congestive heart failure, diabetes mellitus).

Students advance to Ph.D. candidacy by completion of course requirements and a comprehensive examination, which must be completed by the end of their third year. The comprehensive examination consists of the preparation (written) and defense (oral) of a grant proposal on a subject outside the immediate area of the student's dissertation research. Ph.D. candidates must have at least one (1) first-author research paper published or accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal prior to graduation. The Ph.D. is awarded upon the completion of a research program that results in a dissertation of publishable quality with an oral defense. Completion of the degree usually requires 5 years.