School of Graduate Studies

Queen's University
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School of

Graduate Studies

School of

Graduate Studies

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Biomedical & Molecular Sciences


"Pursuing graduate studies in the DBMS has allowed for me to engage in innovative research and has provided me the opportunity to present my findings on the international stage. The DBMS provides an environment that encourages collaboration with numerous researchers with a wide variety of interests and expertise .”

Nikki Philbrook, PhD candidate DBMS


Program Contact

Graduate Assistants
Dept of Biomedical & Molecular Sciences
Bottrell Hall, Room 915 
Queen's University, Kingston, ON, Canada K7L 3N6

Phone: 613.533.2600
New online applications surnames A-L
Wendy Cumpson:
New online applications surnames M-Z
Diane Sommerfeld:


Program Overview

The former programs in Anatomy & Cell Biology, Biochemistry, Microbiology & Immunology, Pharmacology & Toxicology and Physiology, have now combined have become the new interdisciplinary program in Biomedical & Molecular Sciences.  Students are no longer able to sign up to the old programs listed. 

The Department of Biomedical and Molecular Sciences (DBMS) at Queen’s University offers programs leading to the Master of Science (Anatomical Sciences), Master of Science, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. In the latter two degree programs (M.Sc. and Ph.D) students would choose from one of the five fields of specialization which represent the research strength of the department:

  • Biochemistry and Cell Biology
  • Experimental Medicine
  • Microbes, Immunity, and Inflammation
  • Reproduction and Developmental Sciences
  • Therapeutics, Drug Development, and Human Toxicology

The Department provides you with the best conditions to develop into an independent, productive, research scientist and offers a dynamic learning environment.


The department provides a cross-disicplinary environment and delivers the programs in a collaborative and integrated manner. This interdisciplinary gives candidates access to over 80 faculty members engaged in a broad spectrum of biomedical research, using techniques to address questions concerning single molecules, cellular/microbial function, organ-systems, and whole-animal biology.

Queen's Health Sciences Graduate Mentor Program

Career paths – employment opportunities

Career opportunities range from education coordinators, research technician, scientist, administrator in academia, private sector (biotechnology pharmaceutical industry, consulting firms), or in the government sector (Health Canada, Ministry of the Environment and Agriculture). Doctorates can pursue academic careers, or careers in the private and public sectors as listed above.

Degrees Offered/Method of Completion

Degrees Offered

M.Sc. (Anatomical Sciences): 16 months

M.Sc. 2 years, full time

Ph.D.: 4 years, full time

Mini Masters (accelerated entry to Ph.D): 1.5 years

Method of Completion

M.Sc. (Anatomical Sciences): Course work, practicum and report (with defence).

M.Sc. : Course work, seminars,research project and thesis (with oral defence).

Ph.D.: Research and comprehensive exam, thesis & oral defence.

Fields of study and Supervisors

We encourage you to identify an area of research interest and contact a potential supervisor before applying. For more specific research areas of the supervisors see our website.

Biochemistry and Cell Biology

Research in this field is focused on understanding the fundamental processes of life and human disease at the cellular and molecular level. Areas of expertise include protein structure/function analysis using biophysical techniques, NMR spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography, enzyme catalytic mechanisms, cell signalling pathways, cytoskeletal proteins, gene expression regulation and metabolism.

Faculty: J. Allingham, B. Banfield, M. G.Blennerhassett, S. P.C. Cole, G. P. Cote, A. Craig, S. K. Davey, P. L. Davies, P. A. Greer, B. C. Hill, Z. Jia, G. Jones, F. W. K. Kan, A. S. Mak, N.L.Martin, R. J. Oko, P. M. Petkovich, W.C.Plaxton, S. P. Smith, V. Walker.

Experimental Medicine

Researchers in this field employ interdisciplinary methods to explore the processes responsible for both the normal and diseased state. This includes the mechanisms underlying disorders of the cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, nervous, respiratory, and urogenital systems, as well as cancer. Molecular, cellular- and/or systems-based approaches are used to investigate cellular or animal models of disease as well as patient populations.

Faculty: M. A. Adams, J. Allingham, R. D. Andrew, A. M. Baranchuk, B. M. Bennett, M. J. Beyak, M. G. Blennerhassett, G. Blohm, I. Brockhausen, A. Craig, B. A. Croy, E. C. Dumont, A. Ellis, P. A. Greer, A. V. Ferguson, J. T. Fisher, M.F. Fitzpatrick, L. Flynn, A. B. Froese, C. D. Funk, I. Gilron, C. H. Graham, A. Y. Jin, A.M. Johri, C. J. Justinich, M. D. Kawaja, A. E. G. Lomax, M. D. Lougheed, R. J. MacLeod, A. S. Mak, N. S. Magoski, D. H. Maurice, C. R. Mueller, D. P. Munoz, J. Neder, C. J. Nicol, D. O’Donnell, S. C. Pang, M. Pare, C. M. Parker, W. G. Paterson, E. O. Petrof, D. P. Redfearn, F. Rivest, S. H. Scott, D. R. Siemens, C. Tayade, M. E. Tschakovsky, S. J. Vanner, D. A. Van Vugt, J. Walia, C. A. Ward, S. Zhang.

Microbes, Immunity and Inflammation

Research in this field focuses on fundamental questions at the cellular and molecular level involving viral and bacterial organisms and the immune system. Research areas include pathogenic and nonpathogenic organisms, inflammatory responses associated with infection, allergies, asthma, inflammatory bowel diseases, cancer and cardiovascular disease, and advances in therapeutic strategies including drug and vaccine development.

Faculty: B. Banfield, S. Basta, M. G.Blennerhassett, E. B. Carstens, A.Croy, A. Daugulis, A. Ellis, G.Evans, K. Gee, K. F. Jarrell, A. Majury, N. L. Martin, J. Martinez-Cajas, E. O. Petrof, R. K. Poole, L. Raptis, M.Szewczuk, V. Walker, W. Wobeser.

Reproduction and Developmental Sciences

Research in this field spans clinical and basic science, with a focus on fertilization and embryo implantation, perinatal health, women’s health, pregnancy complications, sexual dysfunction, and fetal and maternal programming. Studies are conducted at the level of select patient populations, whole animal models, and in vitro systems.

Faculty: B.A. Croy, R. Easteal, C.H. Graham, F.W.K.Kan, L. Mackenzie, R.J.Oko, T.R.S. Ozolins, S.C. Pang, C. Reifel, G.N. Smith, C.Tayade, L.M. Winn

Therapeutics, Drug Development, and Human Toxicology

The focus of this field is on the effects, both beneficial and deleterious, of chemicals including drugs and environmental contaminants, on human health. Studies are conducted at levels ranging from specific target molecules to intact organisms, and can be directed towards specific diseases, organs, organ systems, or disease processes

Faculty: M. A. Adams, B. M. Bennett, J.F. Brien, S. P.C. Cole, A. Ellis, I. Gilron, T. E. Massey, D. H. Maurice, K. Nakatsu, C.J. Nicol, T. R.S. Ozolinš, E. O. Petrof, J. N. Reynolds, M. Szewczuk, L. M. Winn.

Funding, Academic Prerequisites & Deadline

Funding Information

Basic Funding Package including teaching assistantships.

M.Sc (research): minimum $19,000 per year

Ph.D.: minimum $21,000 per year

We encourage you to apply for additional funding through external scholarships such as NSERC, OGS, CIHR, Heart and Stroke Foundation and other organisations. Entering graduate students who win federal government tri-council awards are automatically provided a $5,000 (M.Sc) or $7,500 (PhD - will be increased to $10,000 for the 2016/17 academic year) top-up award by Queen’s.

Academic Prerequisites

M.Sc.(anatomical sciences): Recognized honours degree with a background in Biology or Health Sciences or equivalent professional degrees (eg. BN.Sc., B.Sc., P.T.).

M. Sc.(research): A B+ (77-79.9%; GPA 3.3) in the second, third and fourth years of an honours bachelor’s degree.

Ph.D.: A Master’s degree is normally required for admission to the Ph.D. program although in certain circumstances direct admission to the Ph.D. program is possible.

Language Test Requirements

An offer of admission to the M.Sc. (research) or Ph.D. programs depends upon the matching of a supervisor in a laboratory in your areas of interest. If an English Language Proficiency Test is required, the School of Graduate Studies requires the following minimum scores:  TOEFL (paper-based):  550, (2) TOEFL iBT:  Writing (24/30); Speaking (22/30); Reading (22/30); Listening (20/30), for a total of 88/120 (applicants must have the minimum score in each test as well as the minimum overall score), or (3) IELTS:  7.0 (academic module overall band score), or (4) PTE Academics: 65

Key Dates and Deadlines

Application Deadline: March 1st for M.Sc. (Anatomical Sciences)

The deadline is flexible for M.Sc. and Ph.D. candidates but to be considered for internal awards, applications for these programs should be completed by March 1st.

Learning Outcomes and Program Milestones

Degree Level Expectations - MSc (329 KB)

Degree Level Expectations - PhD (326 KB)

Program Milestones - PhD (359KB)

NEW! Fast track to Masters – combined BScH/MSc (Biomedical & Molecular Sciences)

The Department of Biomedical & Molecular Sciences is very excited to launch a new initiative which offers a combined program of a BScH/MSc (Biomedical & Molecular Sciences). This program offers an opportunity for students in the 4th year of their Honours program (Biomedical Discovery stream of the Life Sciences or Biochemistry programs) to take up to 2 courses in Biomedical & Molecular Sciences at the graduate level which would then allow these students to enter the graduate program with advanced standing. Research begun in the 4th year thesis project could be carried forward as a foundation for the graduate thesis, which would create an opportunity for exceptional students to complete the graduate degree within 4 terms.

Admission to the combined program is a two-step process.

Step 1:

Students will have the option to apply for admission to the combined program (permission to take graduate level courses) in the winter term of the 3rd year, in parallel with the process for admittance to the Honours year and the thesis research project. All applications will then be reviewed by the DBMS Graduate Admissions Committee.

If accepted into the combined program, in Year 4 of the BSc (Honours) program students will be permitted to take up to two 3.0 graduate level courses for a total of 3 or 6 credits towards the 12 credits required for the MSc degree. It is the student’s responsibility to gain admission to these graduate courses following acceptance into the program. These courses will be counted as electives or science options towards completion of the degree requirements in the BSc (Hons) program. Only 1 of these courses may be a combined undergraduate/graduate (400/800) level course. The second (and all subsequent) graduate courses must be graduate only (800 and/or 900 level).

Step 2:

For admission to the MSc program in Biomedical & Molecular Sciences with advanced standing, students will be expected to complete the standard SGS application process, have an overall A- average in the previous 2 years of their undergraduate program, and have demonstrated significant research productivity in the 4th year thesis project. In order for the student to be granted advanced standing in the M.Sc. degree program, they must have received a final grade of at least B+ (B plus) in the graduate course(s) taken during the 4th year and meet all other requirements for admission to the MSc program in Biomedical & Molecular Sciences.


Students should apply in writing via email to (Dr Louise Winn: with a copy to the Graduate Assistant Diane Sommerfeld ( and at that time should provide a copy of their transcript, a brief description (1 Paragraph) of their research project, the name of their Project Supervisor, and identify the graduate level courses they hope to enroll in during their 4th year.

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