The Molecular Biophysics Training Grant (MBTG) is the main graduate training program at UC Berkeley at the physics-biology interface at the molecular level. MBTG covers the fields of macromolecular folding, structure, and dynamics; structural biology; and single molecule biophysics, including molecular imaging within living cells. The MBTG seeks to train the next generation of scientists to apply the principles and tools of physics and physical chemistry to solve the most intractable, fundamentally challenging, and medically urgent problems across all of biology. These challenges require training across the boundaries of physics, engineering, and physical chemistry on the one hand, and molecular and cell biology on the other.

MBTG in a nutshell

  • MBTG appointments may be up to two years. MBTG Trainees will be supported to carry out rotations in their first year, and If they elect to do their Ph.D. research in the laboratory of a member of the training faculty (see below for list), they will be eligible for a second year of funding.
  • There are two core courses in the MBTG program, MCB 206 (Physical Biochemistry) and Chem 270 (Advanced Biophysical Chemistry).
  • Trainees attend the annual Biophysics Retreat and a monthly lunchtime meeting. Trainees present their research to faculty and fellow students once per year at the MBTG lunch.
  • The MBTG provides training in the responsible conduct of research and in scientific rigor and reproducibility.
  • The MBTG provides career development training and resources.
  • MBTG students select and host two seminar speakers per year in the Structural and Quantitative Biology seminar series.
  • MBTG provides subsidies to defray travel and registration costs for trainees to attend conferences.
  • MBTG is the focal point for diversity outreach in molecular biophysics.

Entering MBTG

Most students enter the MBTG program by nomination from the Graduate Group in Biophysics. Students can also be nominated by the Departments of Chemistry or Molecular and Cell Biology. Students interested in joining the MBTG should apply to the Biophysics Program or the Chemistry or MCB graduate programs. Newly admitted Biophysics students whose research interests match MBTG faculty will automatically be considered. New admits to Chemistry and MCB interested in MBTG are encouraged to express an interest in MBTG through their department at the time they accept an offer of admission.

The MBTG (GM 08295) is funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences and directed by Professors James Hurley and David Wemmer.

Current MBTG Faculty

1. Adam Arkin (BioE)
2. Eric Betzig (MCB/Phys)
3. Steven Brenner (PMB)
4. Stephen Brohawn (MCB)
5. Carlos Bustamante (Chem/Phys/MCB)
6. Jamie Cate (Chem/MCB)
7. Xavier Darzacq (MCB)
8. Jennifer Doudna (MCN/Chem)
9. David Drubin (MCB)
10. James Hurley (MCB)
11. Hernan Garcia (MCB)
12. Naomi Ginsberg (Chem)
13. Jay Groves (Chem)
14. Teresa Head-Gordon (Chem/BioE)
15. Daniel Fletcher (BioE/MCB)
16. Ehud Isacoff (MCB)
17. Jay Keasling (CBE)
18. John Kuriyan (MCB/Chem)
19. Markita Landry (CBE)
20. Susan Marqusee (MCB)
21. Andreas Martin (MCB)
22. Evan Miller (Chem/MCB)
23. Eva Nogales (MCB)
24. Euyong Park (MCB)
25. David Savage (MCB)
26. David Wemmer (Chem)
27. Evan Williams (Chem)
28. Ke Xu (Chem)
29. Ahmet Yildiz (Phys/MCB)