The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (BMB) is the largest basic science department in the Mayo Foundation, representing over 40 faculty. Over 18 staff are primary members of the department; an additional 25 secondary members have appointments in a variety of other Foundation Departments and Divisions including Cardiology, Pediatrics, Pulmonary Medicine, Gastroenterology, Molecular Medicine, Transplantation Biology, and Nephrology.
This talented and diverse faculty is organized into two educational tracks including Biochemistry and Structural Biology, the study of the structure and function of biomolecules, and Cell Biology and Genetics, defining how these biomolecules function in the context of living cells, tissues, and organisms to support important physiological processes. Most importantly, all of the BMB faculty are focused on understanding the molecular basis of specific disease conditions such as cancer, heart disease, diseases of the nervous system, and genetic disorders. A significant number of BMB laboratories utilize genetic model systems such as zebra fish, drosophila, and yeast, to approach and dissect these complicated biological questions. Federal and foundation funding obtained by the BMB faculty is substantial with over $13,000,000 of direct support brought into Mayo Foundation in 2003. Many departmental, foundation, and federal grant applications are currently under review for this year.
In addition to outstanding research, the BMB faculty direct and maintain most of the Mayo Institutional Core Facilities providing state-of-the-art technology for all scientists and clinicians at Mayo in the areas of electron microscopy, NMR, proteomics and mass spectroscopy, genomics and molecular biology, and knock-out mouse technology. These facilities are an essential part of the Mayo research base. Finally, BMB provides the majority of the didactic graduate level education for all Mayo Ph.D students offering important core curriculum studies in Molecular Cell Biology, Genome Biology, Genetics, Biochemistry, Mechanisms of Disease, and a series of advanced graduate tutorials that provide an important extension to the core curriculum. In summary, the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology makes significant contributions to the Mayo mission through nationally and internationally recognized biomedical research and the training of many young scientists, fellows, and clinicians.