Genomics & Bioinformatics PhD Program

The PhD in Genomics and Bioinformatics is designed to develop research scientists who apply principles and methods in genomics and bioinformatics to the study of human diseases.

The PhD in Genomics and Bioinformatics provides research training areas that reflect GW faculty expertise which includes DNA/RNA sequence analysis, algorithm development, cloud computing optimization, informatics platform development, biomarker discovery, microbiome, retrovirology (HIV/AIDS), autism spectrum disorders, muscular dystrophies, cancer genomics, glycoinformatics, microRNA processing, protein trafficking, and dysregulation of mitochondrial functions. Faculty are drawn largely from the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences, the GW Computational Biology Institute, and Children’s Research Institute of Children’s National Health System.

Students have access to the state of the art technologies in genomics, proteomics, microscopy, bioinformatics, pre-clinical drug trials and multi-site clinical trial networks. Resources include the GW Genomics Core, the GW Biorepository resource of biospecimens and clinical data, the McCormick Genomic and Proteomic Center, and Colonial One (the GW High Performance Computing Cluster), as well as cutting-edge core facilities for flow cytometry, imaging, and pathology.

PhD programs in the biomedical sciences are designed to meet key goals in contemporary graduate research education including 1) discipline-specific knowledge, 2) research skill development, 3) research communication skills, 4) research leadership, 5) research professionalism, and prepare graduates for a variety of science careers. To apply, please visit IBS Admissions.

The PhD in Genomics & Bioinformatics begins with interdisciplinary coursework in molecular, cellular, and systems biology in the first semester. In the second and third semester students take a comprehensive introduction to the conceptual and experimental underpinnings of computational biology, statistics, genetics, and DNA sequencing. Career development coursework in scientific writing, oral communication, and research ethics; and laboratory rotations offered through GW’s Institute for Biomedical Sciences curriculum. Following required laboratory rotations, students work with their research advisor and the Graduate Program Directors to complete remaining Microbiology and Immunology degree requirements, including the dissertation.

IBS Core:
BMSC 8210: Genes to Cells
BMSC 8212: Systems Physiology
BMSC 8230: Molecular basis of Human Disease
BMSC 8215: Laboratory Rotations (3)
BMSC 8216: Career Skills: Scientific Writing and Speaking
BMSC 8217: Career Skills: Ethics and Grantsmanship

BMSC 8235: Applied Biostatistics for Basic Research

One or more Foundation Course(s):
Basic Science of Cancer Biology
Infection and Immunity
Genomics, Proteomics and Bioinformatics
Foundations of Experimental Neuroscience
Pharmacogenomics and Personalized Medicine

Genomics and Bioinformatics Core:
GENO 8231: Introduction to Genomics, Proteomics, and Bioinformatics
GENO 6223: Bioinformatics
GENO 6237: Proteomics & Biomarkers
GENO 8998: Advanced Reading and Research Seminar Course
GENO 8999: Dissertation Research

Some Suggested Electives:

BIOC 6240: Next Gen Sequencing.

PUBH 6277: Public Health Genomics

BMSC 8219: Writing the Grant-Style Qualifier

Seminars/ Journal Clubs:
CTSI-CN Informatics Seminar Series

Complete grant-style qualifier examination, advance to candidacy

Graduate Program Directors:

Ljubica Caldovic, PhD
Assistant Research Professor of Genomics and Precision Medicine
Children's National Health System; GWU

Raja Mazumder, PhD
Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine
GWU, Ross Hall 540

Eric Vilain, PhD
Professor and Chair, Department of Genomics and Precision Medicine
Children's National Health System; GWU

How to apply to the IBS and Genomics and Bioinformatics PhD Program
For IBS Application Questions contact Colleen Kennedy, IBS Program Manager