Department of Molecular Biosciences


$17 Million Grant to Fund Seizure, Neurotoxin Research

A new $17 million research center dedicated to identifying medical countermeasures for neurotoxic chemicals that cause seizures in humans has been established by the U.S. National Institutes of Health at the University of California, Davis. The research also is expected to yield findings that could improve medical treatment for people with seizure disorders.


Research shows gene defect's role in autism-like behavior

Scientists affiliated with the UC Davis MIND Institute have discovered how a defective gene causes brain changes that lead to the atypical social behavior characteristic of autism. The research offers a potential target for drugs to treat the condition.


Widely used chemical in soaps may impair muscle function

Triclosan, an antibacterial chemical widely used in hand soaps and other personal-care products, hinders muscle contractions at a cellular level, slows swimming in fish and reduces muscular strength in mice, according to researchers at the University of California, Davis, and the University of Colorado.


Progress in Understanding Autism (pdf)

Children with autism are far more likely to have deficits in their ability to produce cellular energy than are typically developing children, reported School of Veterinary Medicine researchers November 30 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.



The James G. Morris Lectureship in Companion Animal Nutrition was established to honor Dr. James G. Morris who taught and published much research on companion animal nutrition.



The Amino Acid Laboratory offers analyses for research and diagnostic purposes.  It is a nonprofit lab and the fee structure is approved by the University.


  • Admissions Homepage
  • General Catalog
  • RA, TA, & Reader Employment
  • Student Employment
  • Student Information Homepage
  • Cal Aggie Newspaper


The Department of Molecular Biosciences hosts a variety of informative events and seminars throughout the year.


Department of Molecular Biosciences

The Department of Molecular Biosciences serves as the academic home for all nutritional, physiological chemistry, and pharmacologic and toxicologic programs of the School of Veterinary Medicine at UC Davis.

Our goal is to study fundamental biological processes and their perturbations by mutations, nutrition, drugs and xenobiotics and the application of these to the improvement of animal and human health. Eukaryotic systems will be investigated at the level of gene expression, in subcellular, cellular, tissue, organ and whole animal systems to elucidate the pathobiological mechanisms of diseases of multifactorial origin.

Individuals in the department play major roles in programs in Animal Nutrition and Environmental Toxicology and participate in a number of graduate groups such as Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Genetics, Microbiology, Neurosciences, Nutrition, and Pharmacology and Toxicology.

The department contributes substantially to school and campus initiatives in Genomics/ Proteomics, Environmental Health, Human Health and Alternative Medicine. The department also interacts with toxicologists at the California Animal Health and Food Safety Laboratory System and provides expertise for the Equine Analytical Program of the State of California. The department also has responsibility for the Clinical Pharmacology, Clinical Toxicology, and Clinical Nutrition Programs, including the Nutrition Consulting Service at the VMTH.

School of Veterinary Medicine
University of California
One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616-8741

Telephone: (530) 752-1059

Location: 1089 Veterinary Medicine Drive, 1210 Vet Med 3B

Chairperson: Birgit Puschner
Vice Chairperson: Pamela Lein
MSO: Denise Christensen