Students pursuing a TBMH Ph.D. degree must earn a minimum of 100 credit hours beyond the B. S. degree.  Students will engage in research rotations throughout year 1, while completing most of their core coursework, and will commit to a thesis research lab at the end of year 1. Students will take an intensive “Gateway” course (TBMH 5004, 8 credits) in semester 1, where they will learn the fundamentals of biomedicine, physiological systems, and translational science. They will then select a focus area in semester 2 and take an equally intensive “Fundamentals” course (8 credits) covering in depth the fundamentals of that focus area, with heavy emphasis on translational exemplars and case studies. The six focus areas are: Neuroscience; Cancer; Health Implementation Science; Metabolic and Cardiovascular Science; Immunity and Infectious Disease; and Development, Aging, and Repair. Students will continue a core curriculum in parallel with their focus-area-specific coursework, which includes professional development, ethics, seminars and scientific analysis, as well as program retreats and presentations. In total, students will take 31 credits of core coursework, 3 credits quantitative requirement, 3 credits of free electives, and 63 credits of dissertation research.

TBMH 5004 Translational Biology, Medicine, and Health (8 credits)

The nature of the underlying processes of human health and disease and the context in which they occur.  Examines the processes of the normal vs. pathological lifespan trajectory of humans and animal models at the molecular, cellular, organ system, organismal, group and social levels.  Analysis of homeostatic processes throughout life’s stages and the genetic, environmental, behavioral and social drivers and interactions that lead to pathological outcomes.

TBMH 5105 Professional Development and Ethics (2 credits)

Ethical standards of science and ethical issues in translational, biomedical and health research. Responsible conduct of biomedical and health research. Collaborative research strategies. Impact of translational science on national and global issues.

TBMH 5106 Professional Development and Ethics (2 credits)

Scientific communication and grantsmanship in translational, biomedical and health research. Intellectual property, regulations, and commercialization. Career paths in biomedical and health research.  Curriculum vitae and individual career development.

TBMH 5304 Research Experience in Translational Biology, Medicine and Health (3 credits)

Research experience in biomedical, translational, and health sciences. Experimental design and methods, techniques and procedures, lab safety, data analysis and presentation. Serves as the basis for selection of a thesis advisor.

TBMH 5204 Seminar in Translational Biology, Medicine and Health (1 credit)

Weekly scientific research presentations from local and invited visiting scholars on current topics related to the biomedical, translational, and health sciences. Emerging technological and methodological trends. Recent conceptual advances, their relevance across specializations, and broader societal impact.

TBMH 5404 Scientific Logic and Analysis (1 credit)

Critical evaluation and discussion of primary research studies in the biomedical, translational, and health sciences. Analysis of contemporary research problems and controversies, research design and methodology, and interdisciplinary approaches in translational biology, medicine, and health research. Standards for effective data presentation and peer-review. 

TBMH 5014 Fundamentals of Neuroscience 

Comprehensive survey of brain and cognitive neuroscience across scales: normal function, pathology, therapeutics, and social and economic conditions.

TBMH 5024 Fundamentals of Cancer 

Comprehensive survey of neoplastic diseases across scales: genetic, molecular, cellular, tissue, organism, society. Causes, diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Social and economic aspects of cancer. 

TBMH 5034 Fundamentals of Implementation Science 

The comprehensive survey course will include in-depth analysis of major medical and health discoveries on patient outcomes via translational research focused on scale-up and timely, effective delivery of new discoveries to targeted populations. Focus on epistemology, methodology, applications, and outcomes linked to translational science. Topics include implementation science related to: research design and strategies to speed the translation of proven health care interventions into practice; principles of adult learning and behavior change, systems and community-based participatory research; health services, patient centered research; impact assessment; health economics; health disparities; and health literacy applied to "Predictive, Preventive, Personalized, and Participatory Medicine”.

TBMH 5044 Fundamentals of Metabolic and Cardiovascular Science 

Comprehensive survey of metabolic and cardiovascular physiology, their interrelationship, and epidemiology and pathophysiology of cardiometabolic diseases with an emphasis on moving basic scientific discoveries into practical applications. 

TBMH 5054 Fundamentals of Immunity and Infectious Disease 

Comprehensive survey of human immunity, infectious agents and disease across scales: genetic, molecular, cellular, tissue, organism, society. Diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of infectious and immune diseases. Social and economic aspects of infection disease and immunity.

TBMH 5064 Fundamentals of Development, Aging, and Repair 

Survey of the human lifespan, covering fundamentals of pre-natal and post-natal development, maturation and aging, and the capacity and mechanisms of tissue repair in a variety of organ systems. Emphasis on developmental psychology, developmentally regulated genetic/epigenetic interactions, morphogenesis, stem cell biology and regenerative medicine. Exemplars that span the translational continuum of key processes illustrating fundamental principles of development, aging and repair will be covered in an integrated manner. Impact of these advances on clinical approaches to developmental disorders, degenerative diseases and restorative therapies will be considered in the context of health care options, economic impact and in society at large.

STAT 5674 - Methods in Biostatistics

Statistical principles and methods required for effective clinical trial and clinical experiment design and analysis. Topics include graphical and numerical exploratory data analysis, and comparative tests of categorical, ordinal, and continuous data, simple, multiple linear and logistic regression analysis, design of experiments and sampling theory. Additional topics include diagnostic tests, relative risk, odd ratio, and estimation of effective dose. Students will learn to properly interpret output from statistical software.

STAT 5605/06 - Biometry

5605: The normal distribution, estimation, hypothesis testing, simple linear regression, and one-way analysis of variance with applications to the biological sciences. 5606: Experimental design, nested and factorial analysis of variance, linear regression and correlation, and the use of SAS, with applications to the biological sciences. I

STAT 5615/16 - Statistics in Research

Concepts in statistical inference, including basic probability, estimation, and test of hypothesis, point and interval estimation and inferences; categorical data analysis; simple linear regression; and one-way analysis of variance. 5616: Multiple linear regression; multi-way classification analysis of variance; randomized block designs; nested designs; and analysis of covariance. One year of Calculus.

CS 5424 (GBCB 5424) - Computational Cell Biology

Use of mathematical models (nonlinear ordinary differential equations and stochastic processes) and simulation algorithms to explore the complex feedback circuits that control the behavior of living cells. Concepts and techniques from dynamical systems theory, bifurcation analysis, numerical methods, SBML (systems biology makeup language) and Matlab programming. Applications in gene regulatory networks, cell cycle control, circadian rhythms, cell signaling.

ALS 5115 – Nutrition, Digestion, Absorption, and Metabolism of Nutrients in Animals Including Humans
BCHM 5204 - Molecular Biology of Eukaryotic Gene Expression
BCHM 5224 - Protein Structure and Function
BIOL 5404 - Neuroethology
BIOL 5434 - Behavioral Endocrinology
BIOL 5564 - Adv Infectious Disease Ecology
BIOL 5624G - Advanced Microbial Genetics
BIOL 5734 - Advanced Inflammation Biology
BIOL 5884 - Molecular Biology of the Cell
BMES 5054 - Quantitative Cell Physiology
BMES 5184 - Injury Physiology
BMES 5314 - Introduction to Regenerative Medicine
BMES 5424 - Fundamentals of Tissue Structure, Function, and Replacement
BMES 5554 - Biomedical Signal and Image Processing
BMES 6514 - Medical Imaging II
BMVS 5305 (VM 9095) - Veterinary Oncology
BMVS 5624
- Molecular Virology
CHEM 6564 - Bioorganic Principles of Medicinal Chemistry
ECON 6004 - Strategic Behavior
HD 5134 - Contemporary Issues in Aging
HD 5634 - Legislation and Policy in Human Development
HNFE 5144 - Molecular Aspects of Nutrition and Disease
HNFE 5724 (PHS 5024) - Epidemiology
PSYC 5344 -Cognitive Psychology
PSYC 5374 - Health Psychology

Program Leadership


TBMH Program Co-Director

Audra Van Wart, Ph.D.
1 Riverside Circle
Roanoke, VA, 24016
avanwart@vt.edu


TBMH Program Co-Director

Steven Poelzing, Ph.D.
2 Riverside Circle
Roanoke, VA, 24016
poelzing@vt.edu


Program Support


TBMH Graduate Program Coordinator

Jay Read, M.Ed.
1 Riverside Circle
Roanoke, VA, 24016
jayread@vt.edu


TBMH Education Support Specialist

Liza Spradlin
1 Riverside Circle
Roanoke, VA, 24016
lizaas14@vt.edu