Department News

Below are articles from various sources about members of MCB and their research.

Headshot of Lisa Eshun-Wilson and Michelle Reid

This summer marks the first anniversary of Inclusive MCB+ (iMCB+), a mentoring and community-building program that advocates for graduate students in the Molecular and Cell Biology (MCB) Department as well as the Biophysics and Neuroscience programs (+) on campus. During the Spring 2019 semester, founder Lisa Eshun-Wilson and director Michelle Reid, both MCB graduate students, aimed to improve upon and grow the program after its successful pilot year.


June 03, 2019

Group photo of the 2019 MCB PhD Graduates
The 2019 MCB PhD Graduates

As part of the MCB commencement ceremonies last week, the 2019 MCB Commencement Honors were presented. We are pleased to announce the recipients here and we congratulate the awardees!


May 31, 2019


MCB would like to thank Graduate Student Services Advisor Berta Parra for her 37 years of service to UC Berkeley! Berta worked in the Psychology Department and the Haas School of Business before joining MCB in 1993.

Since moving to the MCB graduate advising office 26 years ago, Berta has been a pillar in the community. Throughout her career in MCB, she had the opportunity to watch graduate students like Jacob Corn, Andy Dillin, and Russell Vance progress through their own careers from graduate students to MCB faculty.

Her passion for helping hundreds of graduate students navigate their PhD programs was clear to everyone with whom she worked. “I stayed in MCB for so long because it’s such a special place,” she said during her retirement party on May 22.

Thank you, Berta, for your excellent service to this department and campus!

May 22, 2019

MCB Professor Doug KoshlandNext April MCB Professor Doug Koshland will give the 2020 Lee Hartwell lecture for the Yeast Genetics Meeting, organized by the Genetics Society of America.

This lecture is given by a noted researcher in the field who has used yeast in a way that has had a noticeable impact on other fields.


May 21, 2019

Dipti NayakWe are delighted to announce the arrival of Dipti Nayak, who joins MCB this July as an Assistant Professor in the Division of Genetics, Genomics & Development. 



May 17, 2019

Gomez and Lewis

We are pleased to announce the addition of two new MCB Assistant Professors, Andrea Gomez & Samantha Lewis, arriving January 2020.


May 15, 2019

Alanna SchepartzWe are excited to announce this July Alanna Schepartz will join the Department of Chemistry faculty as the T. Z. and Irmgard Chu Distinguished Chair in Chemistry and the Department of Molecular and Cell Biology as a professor. 


May 15, 2019

University Medal runners-up

Congratulations to MCB graduating seniors Samantha Hao and Yvonne Hao, 2019 University Medal runners-up!

The University Medal winner and runners-up are graduating seniors who embody the highest ideals of UC Berkeley, including outstanding scholarship, perseverance, and impacting the lives of others.


May 13, 2019

Alumni Symposium attendees

30 years ago, Berkeley was a much different place. The cost of in-state tuition for undergraduates was less than $1,500 a year, the median rent was $392, and the spaces which now hold Life Sciences Addition and Koshland Hall were UC Berkeley parking lots.

Much like campus buildings and rent prices, molecular biology at Berkeley has transformed immensely since 1989. That year, UC Berkeley consolidated more than 10 departments that focused on aspects of molecular biology and formed the Molecular and Cell Biology department as it is known today. Since then, from the discovery of cellular membrane trafficking to breakthroughs in cancer immunotherapy to the advent of the CRISPR revolution, the people of UC Berkeley MCB have been at the forefront of innovation in biology.

Continue reading >

May 08, 2019


Congratulations to MCB Professor Matthew Welch, the next editor-in-chief of ASCB's online basic scientific research journal, Molecular Biology of the Cell.

Welch will succeed current editor-in-chief and fellow MCB Professor David Drubin in January 2020.


May 02, 2019

Raulet & Heald

Congratulations to MCB Professors Rebecca Heald and David Raulet for being elected members of the National Academy of Sciences! Members of the National Academy of Sciences are elected in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in their original research.


April 30, 2019


On April 10, 2019, MCB Professor David Raulet gave a lecture on the revolution of cancer immunology for the Berkeley Talks series, sponsored by UC Berkeley's Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI).

"In this talk, Raulet describes how these medicines work, their current limitations and the prospects for novel and more effective immunotherapy approaches, including those based on research in his laboratory."

Listen here! (1 hour)

April 29, 2019

Spring 2019 Transcript Cover

MCB has been busy this semester!

Read all about what MCB has been up to lately, from our recent research endeavors to our MCB 30 Alumni Symposuim!

April 25, 2019


YourChoice Therapeutics, a startup co-founded by MCB Associate Professor Polina Lishko, is developing the first hormone-free birth control for both men and women to be released in 2025. 

The contraceptives were first developed in Lishko's lab, which focuses on the mammalian fertilization and molecular physiology of human sperm cells.


April 23, 2019


Congratulations to MCB Professor Kristin Scott for being elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences! Scott studies the taste system in fruit flies to understand how sensory information is processed by the brain and linked to behavior.

Read more....

April 18, 2019