Pharmacologists pose the question: "How do drugs alter cellular functions?"
Because of the complexity of cellular processes and the disease states that affect them, there are many specialized aspects of drug action on which our faculty and students focus their efforts. For instance, some laboratories concentrate on elucidating how information about the binding of drugs to cell-surface receptors becomes transmitted within the cell. Other laboratories in the department are more concerned with the molecular and genetic phenomena responsible for causing the illnesses. Still others investigate the actions of drugs in whole animals and in humans. In spite of the diversity of our specific interests, we are united in posing questions aimed at understanding and improving the ways in which chemical agents can be used therapeutically.
Job opportunities in pharmacology are excellent. Career opportunities exist in academic institutions, the pharmaceutical industry, the burgeoning biotech industry, and government agencies. Several chairmen of pharmacology departments in the United States and vice presidents and heads of research departments in pharmaceutical companies are graduates of our department - the first department of Pharmacology in the US.
To learn more about where our Ph.D. students go after graduation, see the Rackham Graduate School Program Statistics.