Wake Forest University

Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, School of Medicine

Molecular Medicine & Translational Science


1834 Wake Forest Road

Reynolda Hall

Winston-Salem, NC 27106

United States



Program Information

Degrees Offered:

PhD, MS and MMS (Jointly with PA Studies program)

Format: Campus

Program Description:

To train the next generation of basic and clinical scientists in innovative, significant and state-of-the-art molecular, cellular and translational investigation to advance disease prevention and treatment and to promote human health.

The Molecular Medicine and Translational Science PhD graduate training program was one of the first established molecular medicine programs in the nation and is part of the Molecular and Cellular Biosciences Track of Wake Forest University Graduate School. This track provides a first year of comprehensive training to pre-doctoral students that emphasizes:

  • Analytical approaches to molecular and cellular synthesis, structure and function
  • Genetics and gene regulation
  • Cell communications
  • Organ systems
  • Pathophysiology

Students in the Molecular Medicine and Translational Science (MMTS) PhD program will then receive additional training in translational research with significant clinical exposure that will link knowledge from the laboratory to applications in clinical medicine. This training comes from both physicians and basic scientists in various scientific fields, such as:

  • Regenerative medicine
  • Microbiology/Immunology
  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Genetics/genomics
  • Internal medicine 
  • Cancer biology
  • Neuroscience

The MMTS PhD training program prepares research scientists with a broad knowledge of human disease, molecular mechanisms in pathophysiology, and the clinical implications of their basic research. Application to this PhD program is made through the Molecular and Cellular Bioscience Track. This unique track allows students to enter graduate school with the freedom and flexibility to explore several programs before committing to a specific research topic. A range of mentors can be selected whose research spans basic and translational fields of cutting-edge molecular and cellular biology.

The PhD/MMS is a 5- to 7-year sequential degree program that is offered in conjunction with the Wake Forest University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. The student earns a Master of Medical Science (MMS) in PA Studies after completing a PhD in Molecular Medicine and Translational Science (MMTS).

This degree program targets students interested in clinical research, community research and the translation of knowledge into improved human health. Graduates with the PhD/MMS will be basic scientists trained to function successfully in clinical environments and will have considerable professional flexibility. They can work as clinician scientists on teams conducting clinical trials, for example, or they can teach and do research within academic health centers.

The student can apply for admission to the PA program during the first, second or third year of study in the PhD program and will begin the preclinical year in the PA program after completing the final thesis defense.

Students interested in the PhD/MMS combined degree program must meet the PA program course prerequisites to be eligible for admission the combined degree program.


Wake Forest University is accredited regionally by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC).

Facts & Figures

Financial Aid: Yes

International Financial Aid: Yes

Classification: Doctoral/Research University—Intensive

Locale: Midsize City

Size & Settings: 6,000-9,999

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