Track in Toxicology, Physiology and Molecular Mechanisms
In-person | Full-Time | 5 years
About This Track
Chronic diseases such as COPD, asthma, cancer, pulmonary fibrosis, and cardiovascular diseases are major causes of morbidity and mortality, and environmental exposures are the key drivers of these diseases. Research in the Toxicology, Physiology and Molecular Mechanisms (TPMM) track is focused on discovering novel molecular mechanisms that drive the pathophysiology of major chronic diseases, with the goal of developing prevention and therapeutic strategies to improve public health. The track is supported by NIEHS and NHLBI research training grants.
Students in this track will engage in academic training in specific areas of environmental health with in-depth courses in molecular, toxicologic, physiologic, immunologic, and pathophysiologic sciences. Prior to focusing on a specific area of thesis research, they will also obtain a broad background in environmental health sciences by taking core courses that underlie its scientific basis. During the first year, students will begin to engage in research by doing lab rotations with selected faculty. Training in writing scientific papers and grant proposals is also included in the curriculum.
The research done by PhD students, postdoctoral fellows, and faculty has led directly to an enhanced understanding of the biological changes that represent the early stages and progression of many chronic diseases. The track is aimed towards creating the next generation of scientists with laboratory skills to tackle complex environmental effects in individuals and in the population. Graduates can look forward to successful careers in academic or industrial research and government or regulatory agencies.
TPMM Track Advising Faculty
- Joseph P. Bressler, PhD; Neurotoxicology
- John D. Groopman, PhD; Molecular biomarkers of environmental carcinogens and chemoprevention
- Thomas Hartung, MD, PhD; Developmental neurotoxicity, immunotoxicity & endocrine disruption with integrated omics-technologies
- Mark Kohr, PhD; Sex-dependent differences in cardiovascular physiology and disease; redox signaling mechanisms
- Wayne Mitzner, PhD; Pathophysiologic mechanisms underlying asthma and COPD
- Fenna Sillé, PhD, MS; Developmental immunotoxicity in the context of chronic/infectious diseases & vaccine efficacy
TPMM Program Faculty
- Shyam Biswal, PhD; Molecular mechanisms, pathophysiology and therapeutics of COPD and lung cancer
- Robert Brown, MD; Asthma and COPD in humans, Lung imaging
- Robert A Casero, PhD; Role of polyamine catabolism in inflammation-associated carcinogenesis
- Valeria Culotta; PhD; Pathogens and metal toxicity
- Rachel Damico, MD; Role of the pulmonary endothelium in lung disease
- Robert Fitzgerald, PhD; Control of the cardiopulmonary system
- Alan M. Goldberg, PhD; Farm animal welfare as it relates to human health
- Sharon McGrath-Morrow, MD; Pediatric lung diseases
- Alan Scott, PhD; Immunology of lung disease
- James Sham, PhD; Cardiac and pulmonary vascular cell physiology
- Ramana Sidhaye, MD; Quantitative changes in lung epithelial structure and function in response to environmental insults
- Robert Wise, MD; Pathogenesis of COPD
- Marsha Wills-Karp, PhD; Genetic and environmental mechanisms of asthma and allergy
Tuition and Funding
All full-time PhD students will receive the following support for the first five years of the program: full tuition, stipend, individual health insurance, University Health Services clinic fee, vision insurance, and dental insurance.