PhD Program

We’re one of the few programs in the country that trains in structure/function—where students learn at the molecular level and from the ground up to find the cause and cure of disease. In our program, students take the lead in their research and frequently collaborate with different labs. And the research? It’s cutting-edge in a supportive environment. See how we train the next generation of biochemists.

Research Interest Areas

  • DNA Biochemistry
  • RNA Biochemistry
  • Lipids, lipoproteins, membrane transport,
    membrane structure and function
  • Protein structural biochemistry and biophysics
  • Mechanisms of signal transduction
  • Enzyme catalysis and regulation
  • Glycobiology, vaccine and antifungal

Let’s Talk About our Two Nobels in Chemistry

Considered the most prestigious award in the world, the Nobel Prize was given to two faculty in the Department of Biochemistry. In 2015, Dr. Paul Modrich received the Nobel in Chemistry for his mechanistic studies in DNA repair and in 2012, Dr. Robert Lefkowitz won the Nobel in Chemistry for his discoveries that reveal the inner workings of an important family G protein-coupled receptors.

The Boyce Lab

Lab Spotlight

Dr. Mike Boyce and his lab study protein glycosylation. It is the most abundant post-translational modification in nature and impacts all aspects of cell physiology. As a sugar-based modification, it lies at the nexus of cell signaling and cell metabolism. Glycosylation is difficult to study with common techniques, therefore his lab use a range of biochemical, biophysical, cell biological and chemical biological methods to study protein glycosylation in mammalian health and disease.

Recent News

Nobel prize winner George P. Smith completed his research at Duke.

Duke has awarded Dr. Seok-Yong Lee the 2018 Outstanding Postdoc Mentor!

It is with great sadness we announce that Dr. Deborah A. Steege passed away

Dr. Maria Schumacher was part of a team that found that beyond topoisomerases, an additional protein, GapR...