Research Opportunities

In most cases summer scholars will work under the guidance of a faculty mentor from one of the following research areas within Boston University’s School of Medicine and School of Public Health:

Anatomy and Neurobiology :

We conduct a vigorous research program in “systems neuroscience” from the level of molecular signaling in neurodegenerative disease to the socioaffective biology of autism.


We use cutting-edge technologies and experimental systems to address the cellular and molecular mechanisms of biological processes, particularly those that relate broadly to human diseases such as aging, cancer, diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases.


Our research encompasses many facets of Cell Biology, Molecular and Cellular Physiology, Structural Biology, and Molecular Biophysics.


Faculty are actively engaged a variety of methodological and collaborative research. Through the methodological research, our faculty identify and solve statistical problems and improve current practice in biomedical research. In collaborative research, our faculty are involved in study design and properly analyzing and interpreting data from clinical trials or observations studies. 

Cell and Molecular Biology:

We offer diverse research opportunities looking at the molecular and cellular mechanisms regulating gene expression, cell structure and function relationships, receptor signaling, signal transduction processes and the impact of health and disease on all of these areas.

Computational Biomedicine

Our focus is on translational research to better understand lung biology and disease using post-genomic technologies and computational tools. The long terms goals of our lab are two fold.  On the one hand, we seek to leverage these approaches to improve the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of lung disease.  On the other hand, we seek to develop and apply new research approaches and to train physician-scientists and graduate students who can apply these tools in the setting of translational research.

Endocrine, Diabetes, Nutrition & Weight Management:

Our team values interdisciplinary collaborations. Current and previous collaborators include experts in cardiology, microbiology, immunometabolism, gastroenterology, cancer, physiology/biophysics, clinical epidemiology, preventive medicine, obstetrics, and minimally invasive bariatric surgery. Additionally, we continue to collaborate with individuals in Boston Medical Center’s Departments of Medicine, Surgery, Pediatrics, and Family Medicine. 

Environmental Health:

Our work spans epidemiology, exposure science, toxicology, and risk assessment, and generally falls into one of four thematic areas:

  • Exposure to complex mixtures and health across the life course: where we live, work, and play
  • Translating environmental health to action through policy-relevant research
  • Community-based environmental health: Addressing issues of environmental justice in collaboration with vulnerable populations
  • Interdisciplinary research connecting basic and applied environmental health science


Studies include Health Decline in Aged Caregivers, Investigating Breast Cancer and the Environment on Cape Cod, Long-term Follow-up of Individuals Exposed to Diethylstilbestrol, Neurotoxic Effects of PCE Exposure During Gestation and Childhood, Prostate Cancer Screening and Biomarkers, Internet-based Study of Time to Pregnancy, Mental Health in the Army and National Guard, Folic Acid “Resistant” Spina Bifida, Tuberculosis Clinical Trials and Epidemiologic Studies, the Black Women’s Health Study, Structural and Network Risk Factors in HIV and Substance Users, Reducing Tobacco Use and Secondhand Smoke Exposure in Public Housing, and the Framingham Heart Study.


Our goal is to study human biology in normal and disease states, through the use of stem cells in general and pluripotent stem cells in particular, with two major focuses: gastrointestinal tract and immunity/inflammation.

Genetics and Genomics:

We focus on hypothesis-testing genetics and hypothesis-generating genomics to further promote advances in cellular, molecular, computational and biomedical sciences.

Infectious Diseases:

The Section of Infectious Diseases (ID) represents a dynamic and collaborative research group with demonstrated strengths in both basic and clinical research in areas such as bacterial pathogenesis, HIV, parasitology, host-pathogen interactions, vaccines, and innate immunity. 

Immunology Training Program:

We focus our research on adaptive immunity, innate immunity and inflammation, autoimmunity, cancer immunology and immunotherapy, microbial and viral immunology.


We focus our research on the molecular mechanisms underlying microbial infection and the host immune response with areas of research including bacterial genetics, virus molecular biology, parasitology, host-pathogen interactions and immunology.

Molecular Medicine:

We use molecular techniques to address basic, clinical and translational questions to address mechanisms of disease.

Nutrition and Metabolism:

We focus on nutritional and metabolic aspects of chronic diseases from a multidisciplinary perspective that encompasses molecular, biochemical, physiological, clinical, epidemiologic aspects of human nutrition.

Pathology & Laboratory Medicine:

We utilize experimental and applied pathology to gain a better understanding of disease processes while working to develop methods for diagnosis, prevention and treatment of diseases including cancer and neurological disorders.


Research in the Pulmonary Center is elucidating the biology of healthy lungs, discovering mechanisms responsible for pulmonary disease, analyzing the efficacy and limitations of current pulmonary and critical care practices, and translating these findings to yield clinical advances. 


We focus our research on many facets of cell biology, molecular and cellular physiology, structural biology and molecular biophysics.

Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics:

We focus on understanding the mechanism of drug action in order to promote the development of therapeutics in a wide range of fields such as neuropharmacology, cancer and cardiovascular pharmacology, addiction, epilepsy, neuropsychiatric and neurological diseases.

Vascular Biology