Anatomy & Neurobiology

Welcome to the Department of Anatomy & Neurobiology at the Boston University School of Medicine. We conduct a vigorous research program in systems and translational neuroscience, from the level of molecular signaling in the early development of the cerebral cortex to neurodegenerative disease and the neurobiology of aging. We are also renowned for our teaching in the biomedical sciences and, through our training opportunities in teaching, including the Vesalius Certificate, we provide a unique opportunity for graduate students to receive formal training in teaching.

Our department offers the Master of Science (the Vesalius Program), the MD/PhD in Anatomy & Neurobiology, and the PhD in Anatomy & Neurobiology. The PhD and MD/PhD in Anatomy & Neurobiology can be tailored to each student’s goals and interests through the selection of specific courses in anatomy, neuroscience, or the combination of neuroscience and anatomy.

The department prides itself on the success rate of its graduates. They are highly trained as scientists, and as experienced and excellent teachers. Graduates have had great success in acquiring positions in academia, education, and industry alike. Our students find their years in the department intense, rewarding, enlightening, and even “life-changing.”

We invite you to visit our department website to learn more about our programs, students, faculty, staff, and research.

Department Mission Statement

The Department of Anatomy & Neurobiology is nationally and internationally recognized for providing unique training for PhD- and master’s-level graduate students seeking research training in systems and translational neuroscience, and applied anatomy as well as teaching in medical and graduate school settings.

Our research mission is to understand the neuroanatomical and neurophysiological basis of normal cognition, circadian rhythms, development, learning and memory, and how these processes are altered in normal aging, Alzheimer’s disease, autism, cerebrovascular disease, Down syndrome, Huntington’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease.

Our anatomical mission is to train our students in classic anatomical sciences and dynamic applied anatomy (Biomedical Forensics Sciences, Forensic Anthropology). Training takes place in a medical school setting as students take courses with, and later teach, 1st-year medical and dental students.

Our teaching mission is to develop students into skilled instructors in Medical School courses including Gross Anatomy and Medical Neuroscience that significantly enhance qualifications and competitiveness for employment in academic medical centers as well as in undergraduate institutions. Teaching is both an integral component of the PhD program in Anatomy & Neurobiology and the core component of the two-year MS program in Anatomy & Neurobiology: Vesalius Program.