The University of Pittsburgh is a leading research university, and the discovery of new scientific knowledge is a major focus of the Department of Biological Sciences. Research within the Department is aimed at understanding a broad range of biological processes, from the molecular and biochemical to the organismal and population levels. The Department fosters a highly stimulating and interactive environment for the more than 25 individual research programs, and provides a foundation for exploring novel biological phenomena that require interdisciplinary approaches.

Are you an undergraduate interested in a research experience?  If so, start here.

For a recent example of the high profile, recent research being performed by our Faculty, please see Professor Boyle's collaborative work on a new placental model to measure pathogen infection 


The Biochemistry faculty investigate the function of macromolecular protein and nucleic acid “machines”

Computational Biology

Computational Biology faculty model the dynamics, structures, and evolution of macromolecules and biochemical reactions

Cell Biology

Our Cell Biology faculty study the processes and diseases associated with intracellular organelles and cellular processes

Developmental Biology

The Developmental Biology faculty use model organisms to understand how genes coordinate events during animal development


Faculty in Ecology investigate how microbes, plants, and animals respond to their environments


Evolution at all levels of organization are studied by the faculty in evolutionary biology


The Genetics faculty use model systems to define how gene function orchestrates cellular events and animal physiology


Our Microbiology faculty study how pathogenic microbes and viruses infect and replicate in their hosts

Molecular Biology

Understanding events involving DNA, RNA, and protein “factories” represent the focus of the Molecular Biology faculty

Plant Biology

Plant Biology faculty study plant growth, microbial defense systems, and the interactions between plants and their environments

Structural Biology

The Structural Biology faculty visualize how protein and nucleic acid complexes assemble and catalyze biological processes