Molecular Medicine Graduate Program

This graduate program combines the resources of basic science and clinical medicine and emphasizes the molecular processes underlying human diseases. The Molecular Medicine Graduate Program is designed to prepare students for careers in biomedical research and requires approximately five years of full-time study, including course work, examinations, and dissertation research (sample curriculum). All students complete a PhD dissertation based on original research.

The Molecular Medicine Graduate Program is directed by Dr. Lynnette McCluskey and is based in MCG's Dept. of Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine (DNRM), chaired by Dr. Lin Mei, Professor of Neurology and Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar. The Molecular Medicine Graduate Program includes more than 60 faculty drawn from clinical and basic science departments, including the Cancer Immunology, Inflammation and Tolerance Program, Molecular Oncology Program, and Dept. of Neuroscience & Regenerative Medicine. All are committed to using molecular approaches to solve disease-related problems.


Current Molecular Medicine Students 


Aaron Fan focuses on combining adoptive T cell therapies with peptide vaccination for cancer using a mouse melanoma model. The overall goal of these studies is to improve current methods of immunotherapy, simplifying their use so that they are more readily available in the clinic.


Graduate Advisor: Esteban Celis, PhD


Eu Kyung Ko studies the mechanisms of genes important in mammalian puberty and reproduction.

Graduate Advisor:  Larry Layman, MD



Lauren Prusinski  studies DNA repair systems in uterine myometrial progenitor cells and their implications in uterine fibroid development.

Graduate Advisor: Ayman Al-Hendy, MD


Daniel Swafford uses murine models (Mus musculus) and immunoscreening assays as a means of identifying novel molecular mechanisms and interactions involved with the Notch and Wnt/beta-catenin signaling pathways with respect to immunological tolerance in various disease states such as IBD, cancer, EAE and diabetes.

Graduate Advisor:  Santhakumar Manicassamy, PhD



Molecular Medicine Program Graduates

Joanna Erion -
Yan Wang - Postdoctoral Fellow - Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh
Connie Chung - Associate Scientist - VIvex, Miami, FL
Eslam Mohammed - Augusta University (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Jill Bradley  - University of South Carolina Upstate (Postdoc)
Rahul Shinde  - University of Toronto (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Qian He  - Stanford University (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Haiyun Liu  - Johns Hopkins University (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Mona El Rafaey - Ohio State University (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Kapil Chaudhary  - Georgia Regents University (preparing for USMLE)
Buvana Ravishankar -  Genentech, Inc. (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Lingqian Li  - University of Washington (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Chaitanya Patwardhan -  University of Pennsylvania (Clinical Fellow)
Davies Agyekum, PhD  - Tufts University Medical School (Medical student)
Samuel Quaynor, PhD  - Georgia Regents University Medical School (Completing MD/PhD)
Anthony Florschutz  - Georgia Regents Medical Center (Surgeon, Dept. of Orthopedics)
Juhi Ojha, PhD  - Mayo Clinic, Arizona (Postdoctoral Fellow) moved to CA
Wongyoung Cho, PhD  - Georgia Regents University (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Lakiea Bailey, PhD,
Haixia Qin, MD/PhD - Georgia Regents University (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Kyungsoo Ha, PhD - Georgia Regents University (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Tiffany Floyd, PhD -  Georgia Regents University (Research Staff)
Pam Wall-Steen, PhD -  Aiken Technical College (Faculty)
Daniel Eisenman, PhD  - Medical University of South Carolina (Biosafety Officer)
Durga Udayakumar, PhD - UT Southwestern Medical Center (Res Asst Prof; Radiation Oncology)
Rusty Johnson, MD/PhD  - Johns Hopkins University (Clinical Fellow in Hematology/Oncology)
Ceba Humphrey, MD/PhD -  Knoxville, TN (Surgeon)
Anna Manlapat, PhD  - NIH/NCI (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Faith Mmanywa, PhD  - Duke University Medical Center (Staff Scientist; Bacteriology Research Unit)
Darin Keskin, MD/PhD  - Dana Farber Cancer Institute (Faculty)
David Kahler, PhD  - Columbia University FACS Facility (Director)
Ted Johnson, MD/PhD - Georgia Regents University (Dept. of Pediatrics and ITC; Assistant Professor)
Kannan Krishnamurthy, PhD - Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Office of Technical Development (Licensing Manager)
Kris Dhandapani, PhD -  Georgia Regents University (Associate Professor in Neurosurgery)
Ning Xu, MD/PhD -  UCLA Cedars Sinai (Project Scientist)
Andrew Clark, MD/PhD  - Carolina Ob/Gyn., Med. Health Women & Children’s Hospital (Staff Physician)
JiNa Kong, PhD - Postdoctoral Fellow , Augusta UniversityTsadik Habtestion, PhD - Postdoctoral Fellow - Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA