Department of Microbiology and Moleculer Genetics

Greetings from the Chair

Beth Kirkpatrick, MDI welcome you to the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics. Our department is uniquely positioned in two colleges at the University of Vermont: the Robert Larner, M.D., College of Medicine (LCOM) and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS). At CALS, MMG hosts two outstanding undergraduate majors, Microbiology and Molecular Genetics. Our highly-recognized faculty educators work closely with our undergraduate students throughout their years at UVM as they become excellent scientists and innovative, critical thinkers.  At LCOM, our faculty are closely engaged with teaching and training medical students, as well as graduate students, in our Cellular, Molecular and Biomedical Sciences (CMB) Ph.D. program and Medical Master’s program.

Our faculty are highly focused on research, which spans from basic-science inquiry in the fields of Microbiology; Cell, Molecular and Structural biology; to applied and translational research in human immunology, vaccine, and bioinformatics and genetics. MMG hosts a nationally recognized team exploring the mechanisms of DNA Repair, research that is critically important to human diseases, including cancer. The recent addition of the UVM Vaccine Testing Center team to MMG complements our research portfolio by adding significant new depth in clinical and translational  human immunology and vaccinology, as well as U.S.-based and international clinical trials, all with a focus on preventing and controlling infectious diseases of global importance.

Thank you for your interest in MMG. We look forward to hearing from you!

Beth Kirkpatrick, M.D.
Professor and Chair, Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics
Director, Vaccine Testing Center

Undergraduate Programs

Smiling Student in Lab

Whether you're seeking a B.S. or a Ph.D. in Microbiology or Molecular Genetics, you'll find our department has broad teaching and research strengths ranging from molecular, structural, and computational biology to cellular and pathogenic microbiology and immunology. You will have access to a rich course curriculum and research laboratories where experienced and supportive faculty will guide your research and help you sharpen your scientific communication skills.

Learn more about our undergraduate programs.

Basic
Research

Salmonella in petri dish

Our research addresses fundamental questions in eukaryotic and prokaryotic cell and molecular biology, using the methods of microbiology, genetics, biochemistry, bioinformatics, and structural biology. Unique opportunities await students majoring in Microbiology or Molecular Genetics at UVM. Our faculty give each student the individual attention necessary to help them succeed. Learn more about our faculty research and laboratories.

Vaccines & Human Immunology

VTC researcher with mother and baby in Dhaka

The Vaccine Testing Center (VTC) studies human vaccines with the goal of understanding and preventing infectious diseases around the globe.  We are a diverse team of clinicians, scientists, laboratory personnel and study coordinators. Our lab team focus on understanding immune correlates of protection and how humans respond to vaccine and defend themselves from infection and disease. Learn more about the VTC.

I would not have reached where I am today without the knowledge and encouragement provided to me from the staff and instructors of UVM's MMG program. - Tyler '16

Wallace Retires, Kirkpatrick Appointed MMG Chair

Drs. Wallace and Kirkpatrick

Susan Wallace, PhD, recently stepped down after serving as the founding Chair of the UVM's Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics for 30 years. The legacy of Dr. Wallace's groundbreaking work and vision will impact scholars, scientists, and patients around the globe for years to come. Dr. Wallace was succeeded as Chair by Beth Kirkpatrick, MD, a nationally and internationally recognized physician-scientist and specialist in global infectious diseases, translational immunology, and vaccine development. 

Vaccine Testing Center Site for New NIH Zika Vaccine Trial

Vaccinations have begun in a first-in-human trial of an experimental live, attenuated Zika virus vaccine. The Vaccine Testing Center at the Larner College of Medicine at the University of Vermont in Burlington and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Center for Immunization Research in Baltimore, Md. are the two sites where the vaccine will be tested. Learn more about the trial.