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About Us

Richard Thompson with machine

The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology had its origin in the Department of Chemistry, which was established with the founding of the University of Maryland School of Medicine. In 1919, the department was renamed the Department of Physiological Chemistry and in 1922, the Department of Biological Chemistry. During these years the emphasis of the department was metabolic biochemistry. In 1995, in recognition of an expanded role of the department in the areas of Protein Chemistry, Molecular Biology, and Cell Biology, the name of the department was changed to Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

In 1992 the department relocated to its present location in a free-standing building called the Biomedical Research Facility, located at 108 N. Greene Street in on the University of Maryland, Baltimore professional campus. The building boasts state-of-the-art facilities including computer network cabling, outstanding hood and airflow design, expansive outside windows that overlook an historic cemetery where Edgar Allen Poe is buried, excellent conference rooms and seminar facilities, central shared equipment areas, and a design that facilitates faculty and faculty student interaction. The facility is located near the beautiful Baltimore Inner Harbor recreation area, the convention center and a wide variety of other cultural and entertainment facilities, and is one block from the University of Maryland Cancer Center, the Veteran’s Administration hospital and the School of Medicine administrative offices.

Our Mission

Definition

Bi-o-chem-is-try
(bahy-oh-kem-uh-stree)
 

  1. The study of the chemical substances and vital processes occurring in living organisms
  2. The science dealing with the chemistry of living matter
 

Our Department has two major goals:  

  1. To develop fundamental new scientific knowledge that leads to insights into the functioning of biological systems with a goal of advancing the diagnosis and treatment of human disease.

     
  2. To train the scientific leaders of tomorrow by preparing students to function as independent investigators.

To achieve these objectives, the department boasts provides state-of-the-art facilities and a highly motivated faculty working on the cutting edge of scientific advance in the areas of Molecular Cancer Biology, Structural Biology and Technology Development, Heart, Muscle and Blood Biology, Phage and Bacterial Biology, and a newly developing focus in Surface Epithelial Biology.

The department is consistently ranked in the top Biochemistry departments nationally with approximately $10 million dollars per year in federal grant support. The department is closely affiliated with the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Graduate Training program and other training programs in the School of Medicine’s Graduate Programs In Life Sciences, and has a major commitment to mentoring and advancing the careers of graduate and medical students. This creates a flourishing environment for the exchange of ideas, for scientific advancement and for the training and mentoring of scientists.