Oral Biology

The Graduate Program in Oral Biology offers basic science research training to students seeking academic or research-focused careers. Established in 1968, the Oral Biology Program has a strong track record of placing graduates in academic and industrial positions. 

Application instructions have been revised! Please visit the How to Apply page.

Moos Tower

The Graduate Program in Oral Biology trains students to initiate independent research programs. Exclusively conducting basic science research, students enjoy considerable flexibility in planning their coursework to accommodate specific areas of interest. Graduates are prepared for empoyment in universities, dental schools, corporate research & development, and oral research centers.

The program offers special expertise in

    • biomaterials and biomechanics
    • epithelial biology and carcinogenesis
    • microbiology and immunology
    • sensory neuroscience
    • bone biology, craniofacial development, and tissue engineering

Our curriculum provides a broad understanding of  the development, structure, function, and pathology of the orofacial region. Mentored resesarch experiences allow students to address important mechanistic questions about the genes, proteins, cells, tissues, organs, and organisms of the craniofacial realm. All students complete a minor in a related basic science such as neuroscience, biophysics, physiology, biochemistry or microbiology (many other minors are also offered). Depending on the academic background of the student, prerequisite courses may be necessary before undertaking advanced level course-work. Research  will be conducted under the supervision of a member of the Graduate Faculty in Oral Biology. In conjunction with the advisor, the student develops a research project and selects appropriate coursework for the research area.

The time taken to complete a degree program varies from student to student. As a general guideline, the PhD program requires a minimum of 4 years.

Research facilities

Our research facilities are excellent with well-equipped laboratories. The program is centered in the School of Dentistry, which is part of a major health sciences complex. Faculty laboratories are located throughout the University and house state-of-the-art equipment to support contemporary investigations in all of the specialized areas of research.

Core facilities are also available for flow cytometry, genomics, proteomics, capture and analysis of biological images (BIPL), and biomedical computing, to name a few. For translational and clinical research, large patient populations are available for study. Use of experimental animals and human subjects in research requires IRB approval in advance.

Degree options

Degrees awarded in the Graduate Program in Oral Biology are conferred by the Graduate School. Individual programs of study are subject to the requirements of the Graduate School. 

Three degree options are available:

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Contact us

Graduate Program in Oral Biology
17-164 Moos Tower
University of Minnesota School of Dentistry
515 Delaware St. SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Phone: 612-626-4483
Fax: 612-626-2651

Julie Olson, PhD, Director of Graduate Studies

Ann Hagen, Assistant Program Director