MCB Major Requirements - At a Glance

The Molecular & Cell Biology Department has five undergraduate major emphases. The lower-division requirements, shown at the bottom of the page, are the same for all major emphases except track 2 of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology. 

BMB Biochemistry & Molecular Biology (shows as 966: MO&CEL BIO P1 I, EM 1 on some official University documents)

The BMB emphasis is dedicated to the mechanistic understanding, at the molecular level, of essential processes for the life of the cell, using rigorous and reductionist approaches. You will learn not only how the molecules of life work in the healthy cell and organism, but also how disruption of their function leads to disease. This knowledge is essential for the design of pharmacological treatments that target these molecules to alter their activity.


CDBCell & Developmental Biology (shows as 971: MO&CEL BIO PII, EM 2 on some official University documents)

The CDB emphasis focuses on investigating the dynamic mechanisms of fundamental cellular processes in both normal and aberrant physiological contexts, such as disease and developmental disorders. The undergraduate tracks within this emphasis are ideal for students interested in the medical and health sciences as well as basic research and teaching careers.


GGD Genetics, Genomics & Development (shows as 967: MO&CEL BIO P1 I, EM 2 on some official University documents)

The GGD emphasis focuses on understanding how sequence variation results in the amazing spectrum of life that surrounds us, and how genetic and molecular tools can be used to reveal the role of genes in various biological processes. The undergraduate tracks within this emphasis are ideal for students interested in medical, research and teaching careers.


IMMImmunology & Pathogenesis (shows as 968: MO&CEL BIO P1 I, EM 3 on some official University documents)

Humans inhabit an environment teeming with microbes and their toxins. The omnipresent threat of infection and the emergence of new infectious diseases has catapulted immunology to the forefront of modern biomedical science. Immunology is the study of the cellular and biochemical mechanisms which protect us from these threats. Read more...


NEUNeurobiology (shows as 972: MO&CEL BIO PII, EM 3 on some official University documents)

Neurobiology is the study of the brain—how it controls behavior, generates sensory perception, learns, thinks and feels; and what goes wrong in neurological and neuropsychiatric disease. Advanced methods from molecular biology, genetics, physiology, computational biology and engineering are used to understand brain function mechanistically from single neurons to complex neural networks. Neuroscience is in a period of rapid discovery yielding important advances for biomedical research and translational medicine.


Lower-division prerequisites

Calculus: Math 10A, 10B (or Math 1A/1B)*

General Chemistry: Chemistry 1A/1AL**

Organic Chemistry: Chemistry 3A/3AL, 3B/3BL**

General Biology: Biology 1A /1AL, 1B

Calculus-based Physics: Physics 8A, 8B

*Please note that Math 16A and/or Math 16B are not accepted by the MCB major. Any deviations from the suggested courses should be approved by the UAO.
**Students who plan to major in BMB Track 2 (Biological Chemistry) must also take Chemistry 1B and must substitute Chemistry 112A/112B for Chemistry 3A/3AL, 3B/3BL.