Department Website: http://molb.research.nmsu.edu/
A. Ashley, Ph.D. (Colorado State University) – Center for Animal Health and Safety, DNA replication and repair; R. Ashley, Ph.D. (Colorado State University) – Department of Animal and Range Sciences; P. Cooke, Ph.D. (New Hampshire- Durham) – Director of Electron Microscopy Lab; R. Creamer, Ph.D., Program Director (California-Davis) – Department of Entomology, Plant Pathology, and Weed Science-plant virology, fungal endophytes; D. Cowley, Ph.D. (University of Wisconsin-Madison) – Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Ecology -ecological and conservation genetics; J. Curtiss, Ph.D. (University of Colorado-Boulder) – Department of Biology-molecular genetics of eye development; A. Dawe, Ph.D. (Tennessee) – Department of Biology-molecular biology of plant-fungal and virus-host interactions; J.E. Gustafson, Ph.D. (Zurich-Switzerland) – Department of Biology-microbiology and antimicrobial resistance mechanisms S.aureus; K. A. Hanley, Ph.D. (University of California San Diego) – Department of Biology-emerging vector-borne viruses; I. Hansen, Ph.D. (University of Wurzburg, Germany) – Department of Biology-molecular vector biology; S. Hanson (Wisconsin) – Department of Entomology, Plant Pathology, and Weed Science-viral plant pathogens; J. Houston, Ph.D. (Texas A&M) – Department of Chemical Engineering-flow cytometry and molecular imaging; K. Houston, Ph.D. (University of Texas) – Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry; J. Jun, Ph.D. (New Mexico State University) – molecular biology-DNA sequencing; J. He, Ph.D. (Baylor) – Department of Computer Science-protein structure prediction; G. D. Kuehn, Ph.D. (Washington State) – Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry-polyamine biochemistry, plant wound/repair mechanism; M. Lucero, Ph.D. (New Mexico State) – Jornada Experimental Range (USDA-ARS) – plant-fungal interactions; S. Lusetti, Ph.D. – Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry-DNA replication, recombination and repair; B. A. Lyons, Ph.D. (Cornell University) – Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry-elating structure to function, specifically the Grb7 protein family; B.G. Milligan, Ph.D. (California-Davis) – Department of Biology-plant evolutionary biology; M. K. Nishiguchi, Ph.D. (California-Santa Cruz) – Department of Biology-molecular and ecological basis of speciation, coevolution of symbiotic relationships; J. Randall, Ph.D. (New Mexico State University) – Department of Entomology, Plant Pathology, and Weed Science-molecular plant physiology and plant/microbe interactions; I. Ray, Ph.D. (Wisconsin-Madison) – Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences-plant genetic engineering, primary and secondary metabolism, stress, legumes; A. Rowland, Ph.D. (University of Utah) – Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry-gene regulation of extrahepatic of metabolic enzymes (cytochrome P450s); C. Sengupta-Gopalan, Ph.D. (Ohio State) – Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences-nitrogen-fixation, plant-bacterial interactions; E. E. Serrano, Ph.D. (Stanford) – Department of Biology-membrane biophysics and molecular neurobiology; C. B. Shuster, Ph.D. (Tufts University) – Biology-regulation of mitosis and cytokinesis, role of the cytoskeleton during early development; G. Smith, Ph.D. (North Carolina State) – Department of Biology-environmental gene probes, microbial biodegradation; M. Thomas, Ph.D. (Texas A&M) – Department of Animal and Range Sciences-physiological genetics of ruminants; A. Unc, Ph.D. (Guelph-Ontario) – Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences-soil science; G. A. Unguez, Ph.D. (California-Los Angeles) – Department of Biology-electric organ developmental biology; W. Van Voohries, Ph.D. (Arizona) – lifespan regulation in nematodes and insects; H. Vilchis-Licon, M.D., M.P.H.(UNAM) – Director, Border Epidemiology and Environmental Health Center-epidemiology; J. Xu, Ph.D. (Second Military Medical University, China) – Department of Biology-functional genomics and population genetics of mosquito-malaria interactions; J. Zhang, Ph.D. (University of Arkansas) – Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences-cotton genetics, genomics and molecular biology
DEGREE: Master of Science
MAJOR: Molecular Biology
DEGREE: Doctor of Philosophy
MAJOR: Molecular Biology
MINOR: Bioinformatics (with Computer Science)
The Molecular Biology Program
Students of the molecular life sciences seek to reduce complex biological processes to a set of understandable molecular or chemical structure and function relationships. Integration of this knowledge into the context of complex living tissues interacting with the environment is the ultimate goal. This requires that the expertise from many diverse traditional disciplines be directed along converging experimental lines. The Ph.D. program in molecular biology is designed to facilitate an interdisciplinary approach to graduate research, utilizing both traditional techniques and the latest advances in biotechnology, including the extraordinary power of recombinant DNA methodology. Participants in this program will take core courses in biochemistry, molecular biology and cell biology. Subsequent course work will be tailored for the individual student, depending upon his or her research emphasis. Participation in regular seminar programs will be expected to provide students with the widest possible scientific background. Financial aid, in the form of a limited number of MB teaching and research assistantships, is available on a competitive basis. Research Assistantships may also be available from individual faculty within the Molecular Biology (MB) program. Only the most competitive students are admitted with assistantship support.
The MB program offers curricula leading to the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in the areas of biochemistry, molecular genetics, molecular biology, cell biology, bioinformatics, and microbiology. Admission to the MB Program without deficiency is based on an undergraduate program essentially equivalent to that pursued by an undergraduate major in chemistry, biology, agronomy, horticulture, biochemistry, or microbiology at this university. An entering student is required to complete the Graduate Record Examination (General Aptitude). Undergraduate deficiency courses must be passed with a minimum grade of B.
Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact at least three individual program faculty before applying to identify a prospective advisor and laboratory in which to pursue graduate research. Previous course records and GPA standings (typically minimum of 3.3/4.0), GRE scores (typically minimum of 1150 combined verbal and quantitative), TOEFL scores of foreign applicants (typically minimum of 550 on the paper-based or 213 on the computer-based), a letter of interest from the applicant that identified faculty laboratories of interest, and three letters of reference regarding research performance or potential are weighted heavily during the selection process.
Students with a B.S. degree in one of the disciplines listed above can expect to earn the M.S. degree in about 30 credits, including at least 6 credits of thesis research. The Ph.D. degree can be earned in about 30 to 40 credits of formal course work, plus additional thesis research credits, for a minimum total of 75 credits beyond the B.S. Because research is central in both the M.S. and Ph.D. curricula, early selection of a research advisor is required. Ph.D. degree candidates will successfully complete a written and oral qualifying examination based on their proposed research and the subject matter in the core courses (below) at the end of the first year of study. Also at this time, the master's or doctoral committee is organized to assist in planning a program appropriate to the background and goals of the student. Ph.D. candidates will subsequently complete a comprehensive written examination and oral examination approximately at the end of the second year of study. A final, formal presentation and oral defense of the original research documented in the M.S. or Ph.D. thesis completes the degree requirements.
The Molecular Biology program also offers formal minors in molecular biology or bioinformatics. The molecular biology minor consists of 10 credit hours including MOLB 545; either MOLB 520 or MOLB 542; any of the tier II courses; and one MOLB 590 seminar. The bioinformatics minor is jointly offered with the Department of Computer Science and consists of 9 credit hours for Master's students and 12 credit hours for Ph.D. students, including MOLB 470, MOLB 452, and additional courses selected from those listed at http://research.nmsu.edu/molbio/. The courses selected will depend on whether the student is majoring in a biological or non-biological science and include courses from the graduate Computer Science and Molecular Biology curricula. Please inquire with the Molecular Biology Program office for the most recent requirements for the bioinformatics minor.
Phase I Core Courses:
|MOLB/BIOL 520, Molecular Cell Biology|
|MOLB/BCHE 542, Biochemistry I|
|MOLB/BCHE 545, Molecular and Biochemical Genetics|
Molecular Biology Tier II Courses (at least 9 credits):
|AGRO/HORT 506, Plant Genetics|
|AGRO 516, Molecular Analysis of Complex Traits|
|AGRO / HORT 531, Plant Physiology: Growth and Development|
|AGRO/HORT 685, Plant Genetic Engineering|
|ANSC 602, Advanced Reproductive Physiology|
|ANSC 602L, Molecular Techniques in Reproductive Physiology|
|ANSC 621, Metabolic Functions and Dysfunctions|
|BCHE 494, Techniques in Genetic Engineering|
|BCHE 546, Biochemistry II|
|BCHE 645, Nucleic Acid Metabolism|
|BCHE 647, Physical Biochemistry|
|BCHE 648, Proteins and Enzymes|
|BIOL 451, Physiology of Microorganisms|
|BIOL 470, Developmental Biology|
|BIOL 474, Immunology|
|BIOL 475, Virology|
|BIOL 477, Applied and Environmental Microbiology|
|BIOL 478, Molecular Biology of Microorganisms|
|BIOL 482, Microbial Systematics|
|BIOL 490, Neurobiology|
|BIOL 523, Mechanisms of Microbial Pathogenicity|
|BIOL 577, Advanced Topics Environmental Microbiology|
|BIOL 590, Advanced Neurobiology|
|BIOL 698, Special Topics|
|CHEM 516, Physical Organic Chemistry|
|CHEM 517, Synthetic Organic Chemistry|
|EPWS 486, Plant Virology|
|MOLB 470/GENE 452, Bioinformatics and Genome Analysis|
|MOLB/AGRO/HORT 506, Plant Genetics|
|MOLB 546/ BCHE 546, Biochemistry II|
|MOLB 550, Topics in Molecular Biology|
|MOLB 650, Advanced Topics in Molecular Biology|
|TOX 461, Toxicology I|
|WLSC 488, Conservation Genetics|
Other Course Requirements
|A ST 505, Statistical Inference I or equivalent course|
|MOLB 590, Discussions in Molecular Biology|
|MOLB 597, Laboratory Rotations/Research Discussions|
|MOLB 599, (6 Thesis Research Credits)|
|PHIL 540, Ethics or equivalent course|
|MS candidates must enroll for 6 credits MOLB 599, Master's Thesis. May register for additional credits to maintain full-time status|
MOLECULAR BIOLOGY SEMINAR AND RESEARCH COURSES
- MOLB 450. Special Topics in Molecular and Cellular Biology 1-3 cr.
- Selected topics of current interest in the fields of molecular and cellular biology. Specific topics announced in the Schedule of Classes. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.
- MOLB 452. Independent Studies in Bioinformatics 1-3 cr.
- Individual investigation, theoretical or experimental, in bioinformatics or computational applications under the supervision of a molecular biology or computation science faculty member. Prerequisite: consent of instructor. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.
- MOLB 520. Molecular Cell Biology 3 cr.
- Same as BIOL 520.
- MOLB 542. Biochemistry I 3 cr.
- Same as BCHE 542. B or better required.
- MOLB 545. Molecular and Biochemical Genetics 3 cr.
- Same as BCHE 545 and BIOL 545.
- MOLB 546. Biochemistry II 3 cr.
- Same as BCHE 546.
- MOLB 550. Topics in Molecular Biology 1-3 cr.
- Selected topics of current interest in field of molecular biology for master s level students.
- MOLB 590. Discussions in Molecular Biology 1 cr.
- Oral presentations of ongoing research and/or research proposal for the masters thesis. Must be repeated twice for masters and three times for doctoral students. Graded by 2 options: S/U or Letter Grade
- MOLB 597. Laboratory Rotations/Research Discussions 1-3 cr.
- All entering students are required to take at least one credit, during their first semester, in which they will circulate through at least three different labs working on assigned problems and discussing research programs. May be repeated for a maximum of 4 credits. Graded S/U.
- MOLB 598. Special Research Programs 1-3 cr.
- Individual investigation, experimental or theoretical, under the supervision of a molecular biology faculty member. Course may be repeated up to a total of 6 credits with committee approval.
- MOLB 599. Master's Thesis 0-88 cr.
- Experimental and scholarly research leading to the preparation of a master s thesis.
- MOLB 600. Molecular Biology Research 1-88 cr.
- Laboratory research efforts prior to successful completion of doctoral comprehensive exam.
- MOLB 650. Advanced Topics in Molecular Biology 1-3 cr.
- Discussions and lectures on topics of current interest in molecular biology for doctoral students.
- MOLB 690. Current Topics in Molecular Biology 1 cr.
- Formal 45-minute seminar presented orally, with visual aids, by all doctoral students. Only topics outside student s research area may be used.
- MOLB 698. Advanced Research Projects 1-9 cr.
- Individualized special research assignments for doctoral-level students. Up to 9 credits, with approval of committee. Graded S/U.
- MOLB 700. Doctoral Dissertation Research 0-88 cr.
- Research for doctoral students after completing comprehensive exams.