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Department of Molecular
and Cellular Biology

About us

Our Science 

We research and teach how the collective behavior of molecules and cells forms the basis of life. We are driven by a passion for discovery and value collaborative approaches to scientific inquiry, where connections between people fuel interdisciplinary science and break boundaries across varied experimental systems. Against a backdrop of cutting-edge biological research, we work as a team of educators and mentors to inspire and train the next generation of scientists and global citizens. 

 Our Community 

At the core of the MCB department is a commitment to foster an environment in which all individuals have the opportunity to thrive. It is our shared responsibility to create an inclusive culture, where we support and respect each other as colleagues. We embrace a diverse range of perspectives, expertise, identities, experiences, talents, and abilities. By continually strengthening this foundation of investing in the well-being of our people, we enable our community’s growth and pursuit of the creative and innovative approaches that underlie scientific excellence. 

Our Guiding Principles

We hold ourselves and the community accountable to the following set of values: 

Respect
We foster a safe and supportive environment where everyone is treated with respect and dignity and is able to work towards their aspirations. 

Engagement
We encourage difficult conversations about racial, gender, structural and other inequities in our labs, institutions, and society.We listen actively and openly and seek to continually learn from one another during these respectful and open dialogues. 

Action
We take active steps to diversify our community demographics, promote equitable practices, and eliminate systemic racism and other inequities in our departmental structures. 

Support
We prioritize the well-being of our community members and create avenues of support for all, with a particular focus on the needs of Black people, Indigenous people, people of color, first generation students, people from underprivileged backgrounds, and other community members underrepresented in the scientific community.We prioritize diversity, inclusion, and belonging work, advocate for it at all levels and actively include it in all departmental discussions.  

Integrity 

We carry out our work responsibly and ethically, recognizing that our own choices are reflections of both ourselves and our community. As a department, we are committed to building institutional accountability and transparency in our decision-making processes.  

MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIROur research

Latest News

(tl to br) Caroline Wee, Erin Song, Max Nikitchenko, Kristian Herrera, Florian Engert, and Sam Kunes. (Not shown Sandy Wong)

Scents of Belonging: An Olfactory-oxytocin Pathway for the Social Regulation of Appetite and Avoidance [Engert- and Kunes Labs]

In a project jointly led by the Kunes and Engert laboratories, co-first authors Caroline Wee, Erin Song, and Maxim Nikitchenko used the larval zebrafish to take a deep […]

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MCB 149_History of Molecular Biology

I am old enough (born in 1943) and the field of molecular biology is young enough (it too was born in 1943) that I lived through the entire […]

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(l to r) Peter Kilian, Nicholas Bellono, and Brittany Walsh

Bellono Lab Piranha Research Highlighted in the Harvard Gazette

The Harvard Gazette recently featured Bellono Lab research on piranha feeding habits in an article titled “They’re less terrifying than you think — but still, those teeth”. The […]

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Kate Shulgina

Graduate Student Spotlight: Kate Shulgina (Eddy Lab)

Graduate student Kate Shulgina has spent six years in the Eddy Lab developing a computational tool called Codetta that predicts variations in the genetic code that cells use […]

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Upcoming Events

Dissertation Defense: Katie (Weiner) Miller

  • 1660831200
  • TBD