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Our mission is to advance scientific knowledge in biomedical sciences by:

  • exploring the inherent complexity of biology and inventing new experimental tools or methodologies that let us describe the machinery of life at atomic, molecular, and cellular levels;

  • using state-of-the-art structural and biophysical methods to find answers to important biological and biomedical questions;

  • working in teams with others who are experts in complementary scientific areas (neurobiologists, virologists, cell biologists, chemists, engineers, etc) or who use complementary techniques (computation, omics, AI and design).

  • providing hands-on-experiences and training to those who will become the next generation of scientists and physician-scientists.

We are located in the Biomedical Science Tower 3, a state-of-the-art modern research building in the heart of the University of Pittsburgh Oakland campus, with excellent infrastructure to support the exciting and cutting-edge research that is carried out by our faculty. Some examples of this research include: structurally understanding membrane receptor signaling and how signals are transmitted in metabolic networks; deciphering how important cellular machines work, such as those involved in transcription; elucidating host-pathogen interactions at the atomic level; studying biofilms and functional amyloids; and determining atomic structures of entire viruses.

All our faculty routinely apply advanced and innovative structural methods, such as time-resolved crystallography, cryo-electron microscopy (cryoEM) and cryo-electron tomography (cryoET) as well as sophisticated solution and solid-state NMR spectroscopy, and enjoy helping talented young scientists as they learn to use these tools. Our trainees become well-rounded scientists who can identify and successfully tackle important biomedical problems of the 21st century and leave the department for successful careers in a variety of settings.

Learn more about our department and the exciting work that we do by browsing through this website and visiting the individual faculty pages. Do not hesitate to contact us if you do not find the information that you are looking for on these pages.

If you are interested in pursuing an advanced degree, please take a look at the Molecular Biophysics and Structural Biology Graduate Program as well as other Graduate Programs with which our faculty are associated.

Angela M. Gronenborn, Ph.D.
UPMC Rosalind Franklin Professor and Chair 
Department of Structural Biology 
Distinguished Professor of Structural Biology 
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine 
Professor of Bioengineering 
Swanson School of Engineering