The goal of this proposal is to continue the UC Berkeley Molecular and Cell Biology (MCB) program of predoctoral training at the level of 50 predoctoral trainees per year, predominantly funding students in their first 2 years of graduate school. The 72 faculty associated with this training grant are field-leading scientists with ample research support and a strong commitment to mentoring. The program has a long-standing and defining principle: early and persistent emphasis on student training for an individually directed path to innovative research. The breadth of interests and interactions among the trainees and training grant faculty, combined with unique program requirements such as peer-group research presentations starting in the first year, encourage trainees to seek cross-disciplinary training opportunities. Another key tenet of the program is that the students share their knowledge by classroom teaching and participation in advanced seminar classes. One mission that the program does not have is a specific post-Ph.D. career path for the trainees: instead, the program promotes forward- thinking preparation for a well-informed choice among diverse post-Ph.D. careers. The program is strongly committed to recruiting and training students from diverse personal backgrounds. The Molecular Basis of Cell Function is the only training grant specific to, and the only training grant largely comprehensive for, the MCB graduate program. Training grant faculty research spans the 5 administrative Divisions of the Department (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology/ Cell and Developmental Biology/ Genetics, Genomics, and Development/ Immunology and Pathogenesis/ Neurobiology). The MCB graduate program has consistently ranked in the top 5 nationwide, substantiating the success of the training. Training grant faculty work through rotating assignments to enrich all components of the program: the research infrastructure, the set of broadly collaborative faculty, the adaptive training plan, and the high-caliber trainee pool with high minority representation. The program is set in a rich training environment, with groups brought together by a large number of shared activities, training opportunities, and research resources. Health Sciences Initiative funding from state and private donors enabled our increased focus on quantitative biology and biomedicaly relevant research through the training and research missions of the campus California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences and Li Ka Shing Center for Biomedical and Health Sciences. Additional focus on disease-relevant research is fostered by the Center for Emerging and Neglected Diseases, Berkeley Stem Cell Center, Cancer Research Laboratory, and Center for Computational Biology.

Public Health Relevance

There has never been more opportunity for graduate training in the biological sciences to advance the NIH mission. This predoctoral training program is committed to fostering the broad knowledge, innovative thinking, community network, and raw inspiration that will allow the next generation of trainees to make optimal contributions to improving human health.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
National Institute of General Medical Sciences Initial Review Group (BRT)
Program Officer
Salazar, Desiree Lynn
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of California Berkeley
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
Zip Code
Thurtle-Schmidt, Deborah M; Dodson, Anne E; Rine, Jasper (2016) Histone Deacetylases with Antagonistic Roles in Saccharomyces cerevisiae Heterochromatin Formation. Genetics 204:177-90
Alvaro, Christopher G; Aindow, Ann; Thorner, Jeremy (2016) Differential Phosphorylation Provides a Switch to Control How α-Arrestin Rod1 Down-regulates Mating Pheromone Response in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Genetics 203:299-317
Alvaro, Christopher G; Thorner, Jeremy (2016) Heterotrimeric G Protein-coupled Receptor Signaling in Yeast Mating Pheromone Response. J Biol Chem 291:7788-95
Grenfell, Andrew W; Heald, Rebecca; Strzelecka, Magdalena (2016) Mitotic noncoding RNA processing promotes kinetochore and spindle assembly in Xenopus. J Cell Biol 214:133-41
Guerreiro, Joana F; Muir, Alexander; Ramachandran, Subramaniam et al. (2016) Sphingolipid biosynthesis upregulation by TOR complex 2-Ypk1 signaling during yeast adaptive response to acetic acid stress. Biochem J 473:4311-4325
Grenfell, Andrew W; Strzelecka, Magdalena; Crowder, Marina E et al. (2016) A versatile multivariate image analysis pipeline reveals features of Xenopus extract spindles. J Cell Biol 213:127-36
Hood, Iris V; Berger, James M (2016) Viral hijacking of a replicative helicase loader and its implications for helicase loading control and phage replication. Elife 5:
Guacci, Vincent; Stricklin, Jeremiah; Bloom, Michelle S et al. (2015) A novel mechanism for the establishment of sister chromatid cohesion by the ECO1 acetyltransferase. Mol Biol Cell 26:117-33
Wright, Addison V; Sternberg, Samuel H; Taylor, David W et al. (2015) Rational design of a split-Cas9 enzyme complex. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 112:2984-9
Vogan, Jacob M; Collins, Kathleen (2015) Dynamics of Human Telomerase Holoenzyme Assembly and Subunit Exchange across the Cell Cycle. J Biol Chem 290:21320-35

Showing the most recent 10 out of 206 publications