About the MCB PhD Program

Molecular cancer biologists at Duke University seek to understand the complex regulatory mechanisms that govern mammalian cell growth and differentiation, discern how these mechanisms are perturbed in malignant cells, and how our knowledge of these regulatory mechanisms might lead to improved anti-cancer therapy. This research covers the boundaries of disciplines such as pharmacology, biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics, genomics, and cell biology, which together are leading to greater understanding of the basic mechanisms underlying growth regulation and their alterations during tumor progression and metastasis.

Key Features of the Program

  • The Duke Molecular Cancer Biology program is degree-granting program that confers a PhD in Molecular Cancer Biology.
  • The funding mechanisms of the program provide financial support to the students, allowing devotion of full attention to course work and laboratory research, thus accelerating progress toward completion of the Ph.D. degree.
  • Students may affiliate with any of the program faculty without concern for the departmental affiliation of the faculty mentor. This allows students complete freedom to choose a laboratory that it is most appropriate to their research interests.
  • Graduate training is enhanced by the interactive nature of the faculty, the diverse processes under investigation, and the multiple approaches used by the participant researchers.
  • The Department offers an 8-week internship program for all PhD candidates. Current corporate partners include Celgene, G1 Therapeutics, Incyte, Innocrin, Metabolon, Metacrine, Pfizer, and Roivant. To be eligible, students must join the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics as student members and most students will need to be post-prelim but there is some flexibility for timing to allow students to coordinate with their thesis work.