Graduate Studies in Biochemistry

The Department of Biochemistry offers graduate programs leading to the M.Sc. and PhD degrees in Biochemistry as well as to the M.Sc. and PhD degrees in Food Science.

The programs of study are designed to equip students with the knowledge and experience required for modern researchers in biochemistry, nutrition, and/or food science. All of these programs include both course work and thesis work. Thesis work is primarily research-based; thus, students must secure a supervisor (faculty member) in the Biochemistry Department before they are accepted to the program. Before applying to graduate programs, prospective students are strongly recommended to contact faculty members whose research is of interest to them.

The research specializations of our faculty encompass different frontiers of metabolic regulation and nutritional biochemistry; food science, including functional foods and nutraceuticals; protein structure and function; nucleic acids including genomics and transcriptomics; metabolomics and lipidomics; microbiome; lipids and lipoproteins, immunology; neurochemistry; and cancer biology.

Some of our faculty also supervise students in interdisciplinary degrees such as Scientific Computing, and in other disciplines.

Based on their background, students are advised on their course work by their respective Supervisory Committees.

Candidates for the Ph.D. degree shall normally take the Comprehensive Examination within the first seven semesters of their program. The examination will have two components: the preparation of a grant proposal on a topic peripherally related to the student’s research specialization followed by an oral examination of the proposal. Failure of this examination will result in the termination of the candidate’s program.

After successful completion of the course requirement (and the comprehensive examination, in the case of the PhD), students submit a thesis embodying the results of their original research.

All graduate students are expected to attend and participate regularly in the departmental seminars. The graduate program for full-time students usually takes two years for the M.Sc. and four years for the PhD.