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Letter from Program Directors

The Joint Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Graduate Program is a combined graduate program organized with faculty members from the University of Maryland School of Medicine and the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC). Students in the program have access to outstanding centers and research organizations such as the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the University of Maryland Greenebaum Cancer Center, two NMR facilities (950 MHz, two 800 MHz, three 600 MHz, two 500 MHz spectrometers), X-ray crystallography facilities, a fluorescence spectroscopy center, and more than 50 nationally and internationally recognized faculty members.

There are also several nationally recognized NIH-funded training programs including the Interdisciplinary Training Program in Muscle Biology and the Training Program in Integrative Membrane Biology. Our faculty are well funded by several agencies including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), The National Science Foundation (NSF), The American Cancer Society (ACS), The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), The American Heart Association (AHA), and several other foundations.

Research topics include a wide range of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology fields such as gene expression regulation at transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels, viral DNA packaging, DNA mismatch repair, tumor suppressor structure and function, regulation of calcium and signal transduction pathways, calcium transport, enzyme catalysis, cardiac muscle regulation, fluorescence spectroscopy, NMR spectroscopy, X-ray crystallography, optical sensors, complex polysaccharide structure/function, organic and bioorganic mechanisms, DNA and RNA binding proteins, DNA binding drugs, retrovirus structure and function/HIV, and much more.

In addition to conducting world-class research our faculty pride themselves upon the quality of mentoring they provide to our students. Our student researchers are viewed as being vital to the success of our research mission and are highly valued. Therefore, every faculty member is committed to the development and success of each of our students both here, in our laboratories, and with regards to their respective career outcomes.

We invite you to spend some time learning about our program and to discover what differentiates us from the rest. Please don’t hesitate to contact us or any of our faculty, staff, or students with questions. We are always eager to discuss our program!

Best Regards,


Aikaterini Kontrogianni-Konstantopoulos, PhD, Director
Professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
University of Maryland School of Medicine

Michael Summers, PhD, Co-Director
Professor, Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
University of Maryland, Baltimore County
Howard Hughes Medical Investigator