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Biochemistry (Ph.D.)

When it comes to biochemical pathways, life is a delicate, intricate series of reactions.

Those who study such pathways and understand those reactions hold the key to providing answers for some of our biggest questions - Why do we age and can that process be decelerated? What causes Alzheimer's? Can the metastasizing of cancer be blocked?

The Department’s biochemistry faculty research programs focus on the chemistry and biochemistry of cell membranes, multi-scale modeling of signal transduction in macromolecular assemblies, development of FRET-imaging technologies to observe the location and dynamics of direct protein interactions, biophysical chemistry underlying cell-surface control of leukocyte function, structural biology, proteomics, protein function, the cellular biochemistry of disease and cancer, and photobiochemistry.

This program is unique in that students can chose their dissertation research over a broad range of research projects available in the Department or in the laboratories of participating program faculty at the Sanford and Avera Research Institutes in Sioux Falls, SD. The partnerships with these research institutes also provides a unique opportunity for research that translates basic science into clinical treatments that directly impact patients.

Is it for you?

This program will be a good fit if you:

  • Have an undergraduate or master's degree in biochemistry, chemistry, biology and microbiology, or related fields
  • Are curious about the natural world
  • Like the life sciences, chemistry, and math
  • Enjoy doing research and experiments in the lab
  • Are detail oriented

Career Opportunities

  • Research staff in the chemical, biotechnology, and pharmaceutical industries
  • Scientists in governmental biomedical research institutes and regulatory agencies
  • College faculty