Molecular Biology

Basic Science at SOM

First year students at the School of Osteopathic Medicine take courses in basic sciences taught by Department faculty.


Kai Mon Lee, PhD—Course director

Medical Biochemistry seeks to explain life and death in chemical terms  It deals with the relationship between molecular structure and physiological function on the cellular level.  The goal of the this course is to provide students with a basic working knowledge of the fundamental concepts of biochemistry with specific emphasis on disease states.


Susan Muller-Weeks, PhD—Course director

Microbiology involves the study of microorganisms and their role in human disease. This course has 2 principal missions. The first is to provide a broad overview of the basic biology of microbial pathogens, including viruses, protozoa, helminths, fungi and bacteria. The second is to present the mechanisms by which microbes cause disease and the immune response to such infections. Microbiology serves as a foundation for the second-year course in Infectious Diseases.


Jennifer Fischer, PhD—Course director

Histology presents the detailed microscopic anatomy of healthy cells, tissues and organs as well as the structural basis for their physiologic function. Knowledge of cellular structure provides the foundation for understanding disease mechanisms and pathology. Students are expected to identify the various cells, tissues and organs in light and electron micrographs. This information is then applied to recognize how structure and function contribute to clinical processes. This course allows students the option to use a traditional microscope and slide set in lab or a virtual microscopy program that contains a library of slides viewable on- campus or from home. The added advantage of the virtual program enables students to capture images, save and label them for personal study and more flexibility in their study time.

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