The Molecular Biophysics & Biochemistry (MBB) track in the Integrated Multidisciplinary Graduate Program (IMGP) at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA) is a dynamic program that is heavily focused on studying the structure and function of cellular components, from DNA repair complexes and chaperones that sustain survival of cancer cells to signaling proteins that underlie metabolic disorders, such as diabetes. The program is backed by state-of-the-art facilities for X-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, surface plasmon resonance, analytical ultracentrifugation, and titration calorimetry; these provide a powerful set of tools to study macromolecular structure, dynamics, and interactions. The program provides a unique environment in which graduate students contribute to the cutting-edge science and receive solid training in the sophisticated research methods of biochemistry and biophysics.
Recent technological advances have revolutionized the way we discover and characterize molecular pathways and identify mutations linked to disease. Our ability to convert this unprecedented insight into effective individualized therapeutics requires mechanistic understanding of the key molecules involved, their interactions with partners, and the way their function is regulated. The focus on molecular mechanisms is the unifying research theme for the diverse group of faculty members in the MBB track. Great discoveries happen when scientists can traverse different disciplines, and one of the goals of the MBB track is to train students to be successful in the multidisciplinary environment of modern science.