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A most important mission of the Department is to create new knowledge in the interrelated fields of physiology and biophysics.

  • Physiology is the study of life and the foundation for approximately two-thirds of clinical medicine.
  • Biophysics refers to both molecular biophysics (e.g., structural biology and protein folding) and cellular biophysics (the application of physical principles to living cells or tissues).

We are one of the few departments in the world that study physiological problems from the level of the atom—through molecules, cellular organelles, whole cells, tissues, and organs—to the whole organism. We focus on the nervous, cardiovascular, and renal systems, and we subdivide our research into organ systems, disciplines and diseases.

To support our research and educational programs, we sponsor weekly seminars in which we invite eminent scholars, generally from outside the region, to present their work. We also have programs in the Responsible Conduct of Research, including Authorship Guidelines.

Our department additionally boasts state-of-the art facilities, mainly on the 5th and 6th floors of the Robbins Building (East Wing of the School of Medicine). The renovation of nearly 40,000 square feet of space was completed in 2009. In the past 4 years, we have invested more than $3.5 million in core and general-use research equipment for our Research Groups.