Neuroscience Doctoral Program (NDP)



The Neuroscience Doctoral Program (NDP) at MCW is devoted to training the next generation of neuroscience researchers. A diverse group of neuroscientists with an impressive record of pre-doctoral training, research and outside funding, form the core faculty for this doctoral training program. During your first year in the program, you will complete graduate coursework and short research experience in the laboratories of our neuroscience faculty. The program recommends at least three rotations in order for you to gain valuable insight into the breadth of research. During your subsequent years, the emphasis of your graduate education is placed on advanced training in neuroscience together with dissertation research on a problem of current importance in neuroscience. Throughout your training, you will interact with many of our faculty engaged in cutting-edge neuroscience research.

Participating Faculty

Areas of Focus: Cellular & Molecular Neurobiology, Neurophysiology, Neuropharmacology, Neuropathology & Toxicology, and Sensation, Perception & Cognition


Biophysics (PhD) 

MCW’s Biophysics PhD program is home to the National Biomedical Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) Center and features two areas of primary research: Molecular Biophysics and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). As a Biophysics student, you will be able to choose from a variety of research topics, ranging from the application of new technologies in solving biological problems to cognitive neuroscience to structural and functional dynamics of proteins. If you are interested in conducting biophysics research, we encourage you to apply directly to the program, or by applying to either our Interdisciplinary Program (IDP) in Biomedical Research or the Neuroscience Doctoral Program (NDP).

Cell & Developmental Biology (PhD) 

The Cell & Developmental Biology PhD program at MCW is defined by its research strengths in cellular and molecular mechanisms of organ development, stem cell biology and its impact on regenerative medicine and neuroscience. This program is home to MCW's Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Biology program, which focuses on the study of normal development and disease pathways of the liver, heart and nervous system. Some of the noteworthy research breakthroughs within Cell & Developmental Biology include the characterization of novel mutations underlying Axenfeld-Reiger Syndrome as well as the role of TRPA1 channels in nociception. If you are interested in participating in cell and developmental biology research, you can seek admission into MCW’s Graduate School by applying directly to the program through either the Interdisciplinary Program (IDP) or Neuroscience Doctoral Program (NDP).


Biochemistry (PhD)

The Biochemistry PhD program at MCW will expose you to state-of-the-art facilities and instruments for 3D structure determination of proteins and protein-drug complexes by X-ray crystallography, fluorescence microscopy and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. The research areas of our faculty are broad and include, but are not limited to, cell & development biology, structural biology and drug discovery. If you are interested in conducting biochemistry research at MCW, we invite you to apply through either our Interdisciplinary Program (IDP) or Neuroscience Doctoral Program (NDP).


Pharmacology & Toxicology (PhD) 

The Pharmacology & Toxicology PhD program at MCW emphasizes research in mechanistic studies of drug actions/signaling molecules and is home to the Drug Discovery Center, which focuses on the translation of new discoveries into therapies that can be used to improve human health. If you are interested in pharmacology and toxicology research, you can seek admission into MCW’s Graduate School by applying through either the Interdisciplinary Program (IDP) or the Neuroscience Doctoral Program (NDP).