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Curriculum and Degree Requirements

Students interested in the Molecular Medicine and Translational Science PhD program will utilize a newly designed first year curriculum under the Molecular and Cellular Biosciences entry program. At the core of this curriculum is a two semester course, MCB 701/702, which provides broad exposure to these fundamentals topics:

  • Macromolecular synthesis, structure and function
  • Regulation of gene expression and genetics
  • Cell structure and Cell communication
  • Organ systems integration, physiology, and pathology

Additionally, students will take a short course in analytical skills followed by their selection of three Program-Specific electives taught by the 5 participating Graduate Programs (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Cancer Biology, Microbiology and Immunology, Molecular Genetics and Genomics, and Molecular Medicine and Translational Science). This course of study is complemented by a seminar/discussion course in Scientific Professionalism and Integrity

Also during the first year, students will explore scientific research projects by participating in three laboratory research rotations, choosing laboratories from within the 5 participating PhD programs. These laboratory rotations introduce students to new techniques and guide in the selection of a dissertation research advisor. Once a research mentor has been selected, students begin specialization in the research area of that laboratory.  

Entering MD, DVM or DO students into the MMTS PhD program will follow the Curriculum and Program Requirements.

Further detail on the first year MCB program can be located by visiting  Wake Forest University Graduate School.  

At the conclusion of the first year of study, those students wishing to continue in the MMTS PhD program will select a laboratory mentor and declare the MMTS pathway. 

During the summer of the first year, MMTS students will devote full time to their laboratory research project.  During the summer semester, students choose clinical MD mentor in preparation of Clinical Experience course starting in the fall.

Students will complete courses specific to their chosen research program of study during the second year. For MMTS students, this second year will diverge from other current graduate programs with the classes devoted to the intensive study of the pathological and physiological basis of human disease and acquiring skills for successful scientific career development.

Elective offered during the summer semester is MMTS 721 - Regenerative Medicine Immersion - Fundamentals, Principles and Clinical Applications and limited to a total of five (5) students. 

Students are encouraged to participate in a journal club that matches their research interests.
Molecular Medicine Journal Club
Journal Clubs Courses
Other Journal Clubs 

Molecular Medicine and Translational Sciences Curriculum


YEAR ONE for MCB Students (Fall, Spring, Summer):

  1. Take the Molecular and Cellular Biosciences curriculum in fall and spring, including Foundations of Translational Science as the second elective.
  2. Choose MMTS program and advisor by the end of the spring term.
  3. Take Research (MMTS 791) in the summer term and choose Clinical Mentor during summer semester

YEAR TWO (Fall, Spring, Summer):

  1. Take Translational Science Seminar, Statistics, Research, and any electives in the fall term.
  2. Take Clinical Experience in fall and spring term.
  3. Take Translational Science Seminar, Scientific Development and the Business of Science, Research, and any electives in the spring term. 
  4. Take the MCB-752. Foundations of Translational Science (2), spring term, if this was not taken in year one.
  5. Take Research and prepare for Preliminary Exam in summer term.
    (MD, DVM and DO students enter PhD program as second year students.) 


  1. Take Translational Science Seminar and Research each fall and spring semester; take Research in the summer term.
  2. Take preliminary examination by September 1st at the beginning of the third year.
  3. Registration for final semester before graduation, refer to Bulletin of Wake Forest University for definition.    

Quick Reference

Contact Information
Molecular Medicine & Translational Science Graduate Program

Office 336-713-4259

Kay Collare
Administrative Assistant


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