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Biochemistry BS

(HEGIS: 04.14 BIOCHEMISTRY, CIP: 26.0202 Biochemistry)

Department of Biochemistry

955 Main Street, Suite 4102
Jacobs School of Medicine & Biomedical Sciences
Buffalo, NY 14203

Mark R. O'Brian

Alfred S. Ponticelli
Director of Undergraduate Education

Associated Subjects

Why study Biochemistry BS at UB?

Biochemistry explores the chemical principles that underlie biological processes. The course of study in biochemistry emphasizes macromolecular structure and function, control of gene expression, and metabolic regulation as they relate to basic and biomedical science. The design of the Biochemistry program provides strong preparation to students for advanced study in medical, dental or graduate school, or for occupations in academic, industrial, medical or governmental settings. The strength of the program lies in the extensive student research experience in the laboratories of the faculty.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of all requirements, the student will have knowledge to:

  • Understand the chemical nature of important biological macromolecules, the principles underlying their structural organization, and how their structure determines function.
  • Gain familiarity with the scientific literature, including using online databases; understand the creation and testing of scientific hypotheses, and critical evaluation of experimental data.
  • Learn specific laboratory skills relevant to future careers.

The Learning Environment

The Biochemistry core curriculum provides a comprehensive learning environment through the combination of didactic lecture, analysis and discussion of research articles from the scientific literature, evaluation of research seminars, and hands-on research training. In lecture-based courses, students acquire a fundamental understanding of biochemical principles (BCH 403, approximately 220 students), biomedical genetics (BCH 410, approximately 175 students), and cutting-edge laboratory techniques in the fields of biochemistry and molecular biology (BCH 401, 20-25 students). In literature-based discussion courses, students gain experience and proficiency in reading, analyzing, writing summaries and critiquing/discussing research articles on advanced topics in modern biochemistry (BCH 404, BCH 405, 20-25 students). Students also learn about diverse areas of ongoing biomedical research by attending departmental seminars and evaluating the presentations through written critiques and in-class discussions (BCH 407, 20-25 students). Lastly, students gain extensive hands-on research training in a faculty member’s laboratory (BCH 498).

About Our Facilities

UB’s new downtown Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences features:

  • Eight floors; 628,000 square feet
  • Interior seven-story glass atrium, terra-cotta and glass rain screen façade
  • State-of-the art laboratory space
  • Built-in NFTA-Metro rail station for convenient public access

Research conducted in faculty laboratories utilizes cutting-edge technologies and equipment.  Students have access to a number of state-of-the-art core facilities within the department and the Jacobs School of Medicine to support their research:

  • Molecular Interactions Suite (Bio-layer interferometry, surface plasmon resonance, isothermal calorimetry)
  • Confocal Microscopy and Flow Cytometry Core (confocal microscopy, laser dissection, flow cytometry, molecular imaging, real-time PCR)
  • Next-Generation Sequencing and Expression Core
  • Protein Expression and Crystallization Core
  • Proteomics/Mass Spectrometry Core
  • Electron Microscopy Core
  • The Western New York Stem Culture and Analysis Center (includes 4 core facilities)
  • Gene Targeting and Transgenic Mouse Core (at Roswell Park Cancer Center)

About Our Faculty

The Department of Biochemistry presently has 21 full-time faculty that includes 12 Professors (three of which are SUNY Distinguished Professors), 5 Associate Professors and 4 Assistant Professors. In addition, we have a total of 20 research track and secondary appointees and two emeritus SUNY Distinguished Professors. Biochemistry faculty hold important leadership positions at the School and University levels and are actively involved in cutting-edge research, teaching, editorial boards, study sections and invited talks at National/International meetings, universities and research institutes.

Recent faculty achievements include Dr. Jennifer Surtees receiving the Community Service Award for Excellence in Promoting Inclusion and Diversity, Dr. Laura Feltri receiving the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities, Dr. Norma Nowak receiving the Buffalo Business First 2020 Power 150 Women in Buffalo, Drs. Marc Halfon and Gabriela Popescu receiving UB’s Excellent Scholar’s Award for Sustained Research Achievement, and Dr. Thomas Hohle receiving The Milton Plesur Excellence in Teaching Award.

Faculty List Directory

Please visit the Biochemistry department website for additional information about our faculty.

Career Outlook

Students with good laboratory and analytical ability and interest in the chemical basis of life will excel in biochemistry.

80% of our students go on to professional schools in medicine, dentistry, or graduate school.

Alumni in biochemistry have gone on to careers in the following fields:

  • Agronomy
  • Biochemistry
  • Biotechnology
  • Chemistry
  • Consumer protection
  • Dentistry
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Environmental science
  • Food and drug analysis and technology
  • Genetics
  • Medicine
  • Nutrition
  • Patent law
  • Pharmaceutics
  • Public Health
  • Sales

Academic Advising

Advisor assignments are determined by students’ academic year.

The purpose of advisement is to provide students with guidance in course sequencing and selection. In-person advisement is required in your first year at the University to develop an appropriate academic plan to facilitate a timely graduation. Students are required to meet with their advisor in the first year of study and are encouraged to meet with their advisor at least once a semester. In addition to assisting students in completing their degree in a timely manner, advisors also connect students to campus resources that can aid in their academic success and meeting their post-graduate or professional goals.

Students are advised by the Jacobs School Undergraduate Education Office before they are enrolled in BCH 403. Once students are enrolled in BCH 403, they are advised by the Program Director.

Academic Advising Contact Information

Biomedical Undergraduate Education
Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
40 Biomedical Education Building (BEB) – South Campus

Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences Undergraduate Education

Kelli Hickey
Email Kelli Hickey

Shannon M. Brown
Assistant Director
Email Shannon M. Brown

Associated Subjects

Published: Nov 28, 2022 13:03:03