Welcome to the Molecular Basis of Disease Area of Focus (MBDAF) at GSU

The MBDAF supports and grows interdisciplinary disease related research at GSU. The goal of the MBDAF is to integrate parts of a wide range of disciplines in order that biomedical research problems are approached in new, and potentially transformative, ways. In order to be successful, the members of an interdisciplinary group must first learn the language of the other disciplines, as well as develop an understanding of the experimental approaches used to solve problems. The MBDAF supports interdisciplinary learning through a Distinguished Lecturer Seminars, MBDAF Fellow Seminars, and though annual Graduate and Undergraduate MBDAF Fellow Research Days.

In order to best promote interdisciplinary research and research themes, traditional barriers that exist between departments must be lowered, and cooperation between faculty from different departments should be encouraged and rewarded. The MBDAF promotes interdisciplinary research through competitive seed grants to MBDAF faculty and fellows who propose novel multidisciplinary research projects. MBDAF seed grants allow newly formed teams to generate pilot data needed to support large, collaborative grant proposals. These efforts promote a culture of excellence and collegiality for synergistic interdisciplinary research collaboration.

Also critical to facilitating interdisciplinary research are strong core facilities. The MBDAF supports cutting edge core facilities in the Departments of Biology and Chemistry which have in turn allowed GSU faculty maximal and broad accessibility to specialized equipment.

Teaching, training, community outreach, and other essential functions are being performed by graduate programs and departments at GSU. In order to support interdisciplinary teams AND fulfill other essential university missions, the MBDAF promotes a synergistic relationship between excellent interdisciplinary research programs and excellent training programs of graduate and undergraduate education. MBDAF graduate and undergraduate fellows participate in career development, travel and community outreach activities designed to promote collaboration and sharing of knowledge and resources.

The 2016 Molecular Basis of Disease Area of Focus has 50 graduate Fellow and 22 undergraduate Fellow participants.