Biochemistry explores the chemical principles that underlie biological processes.
Acceptance Criteria Applications accepted after three semesters. Minimum GPA of 2.0 overall. Minimum GPA of 3.0 in prerequisite courses.
Advising Note: Minimum GPAs of 2.0 in biochemistry courses, and 3.0 in prerequisite courses, are needed to graduate.
Acceptance Information Students interested in applying to biochemistry are encouraged to submit an application in their second semester, sophomore year by February 1. Applications are submitted
online at the Program Application website
Number of applicants/year: 30 Number of accepted majors/year: 20 Total number of majors currently enrolled: 40
The curricular goals of the department are for students to gain a solid understanding of basic biochemical principles and to develop research-based analytical and problem solving skills. The Biochemistry department offers didactic and seminar-based courses
along with in-depth laboratory research experience. In addition to a course in basic biochemical principles, the department offers multiple courses designed to familiarize students with cutting-edge research in numerous
biochemical and biomedical areas. Two of these courses required and are offered in the second semester of the junior year and the first semester of the senior year. The goals for these courses are for students are for
students to gain experience and proficiency in reading, analyzing, critiquing, and discussing research articles from the scientific literature, to broaden their knowledge in multiple areas of modern biochemistry, and
to formulate and compose a written Research Proposal to serve as the foundation for three semesters of required undergraduate research. Because of their limited enrollment, these courses offer students exceptional opportunities
to interact one-on-one with faculty.
The average class size for prerequisite courses in science and chemistry is approximately 200. Courses for students in their junior and senior year are no larger than twenty. TAs are not used for upper level-courses.
Although not required for majors, BIO 205 is a good course for those students who are interested in exploring biochemistry.
The research interests of the Biochemistry faculty encompass many of the most active areas of modern biomedical research. Thematic areas of faculty research include Bioinformatics, Developmental Genomics, Molecular Genetics, Genome Integrity and Gene
Expression, Membrane Transport/Signaling, Neurodegenerative Disorders, Metabolic Disorders, and Protein Structure and Function. Faculty employ a wide variety of cutting-edge research tools in these projects, including
the use of transgenic animals, gene arrays, analysis of molecular structure, and high throughput proteomics studies.
Biochemistry faculty have been recognized for their excellence in teaching by their receipt of teaching awards. In addition, the research achievements of our faculty have been recognized by receipt of the Stockton
Kimball Prize, and by their being named as UB and SUNY Distinguished Research Professors. In addition, many of our faculty serve regularly on national grant review panels, or on the editorial boards of major journals.
Practical Experience and Special Academic Opportunities
Notable Program Features The core of the biochemistry program provides a link between didactic courses and learning from the literature and research presentations in the BCH 401,
BCH 403, BCH 404, BCH 405, BCH 407 series. State of the art facilities within the Biochemistry Department include a Proteomics Core Facility (MALDI-TOF Mass Spectrometer, 2D-Differential Gel Electrophoresis equipment) and a Molecular Interactions Suite
(Biacore SPR Instrument, Isothermal Calorimeter). Students also have access to core facilities located throughout the Universityto support their research that include a Confocal Microscopy Core Facility (confocal microscopes,
laser dissection, flow cytometry, molecular imaging, real‐time PCR), Microarray and Affymetrix Core Facilities, and a Transgenic Mouse Core Facility (at Roswell Park Cancer Center).
Undergraduate Research and Practical Experience The Biochemistry program requires students to complete 8 credit hours of research over the course of 3 semesters in an active research laboratory.
By working on an independent project as part of a research team with faculty, graduate students, technical staff and postdoctoral fellows, students are provided with an exceptional opportunity to develop research-based
analytical and problem solving skills. As part of this research experience the student is required to present a poster describing their research, usually performed at the annual Biochemistry Research Day each spring.
Independent study opportunities are available with permission of an instructor.
Honors, Awards, and Scholarships Honors Program Students who complete an acceptable report describing their research and who have a minimum GPA of 3.25 overall are eligible for departmental honors.
John F. Moran Memorial Award, presented to the graduating senior with the highest grade in BCH 403.
Deborah, Christopher, and Adam White Memorial Award, presented to the outstanding senior with the highest overall GPA and acceptance into medical school.
Outstanding Senior Award, presented to the student who has maintained a high level of academic performance throughout their undergraduate career.