Gerstner Sloan Kettering Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (Program in Cancer Biology) Gerstner Sloan Kettering Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

Gerstner Sloan Kettering Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (Program in Cancer Biology) Gerstner Sloan Kettering Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

New York, NY
student ratio
total students
Not Reported
average amount to complete degree
December 1
fall application deadline
Not Reported
acceptance rate
1 Degree Offered
degrees offered


Program of Study

The mission of the Gerstner Sloan-Kettering Graduate School is to advance the frontiers of knowledge by providing an interactive, innovative, and collegial environment that educates and trains students to make new discoveries in the biological sciences. The recent explosion in new knowledge about the biological functions of disease, including cancer, is rooted in fundamental laboratory discoveries. Research has been performed in genetics, cell biology, immunology, and other disciplines to contribute to the understanding of how disease affects the human body.

The curriculum places special emphasis on the development of a self-reliant research approach, critical analysis, and the integration of basic science knowledge with human disease physiology. During the first year, students complete a thirty-two-week core course (sixteen weeks per semester), which introduces recent findings in relevant topics through didactic lecture and discussion; three laboratory rotations, with each one culminating in a written summary and oral presentation of their findings; course work in logic and critical analysis and responsible conduct of research; and two semesters of the President's Research Seminar Series Journal Club, which introduces students to the published works of world-renowned speakers. Following the end of the spring semester, students are expected to choose a research mentor.

During the second year, students begin their full-time dissertation research and present a written and oral thesis proposal. They are also expected to take part in the Current Topics Journal Club as well as the Graduate Student Seminar, in which students present their own research. Sometime during their fifth or sixth year of study, students must complete their research and present and defend their findings in a dissertation.

Research Facilities

The library subscribes to a full range of databases that encompass key science, medical, and health-care information. Students have access to more than 1,100 journal titles, with over 80 percent of these titles accessible and available electronically. The library's Web site provides access to an extensive collection of resources, including an online catalog, databases, electronic books, and electronic journals.

Sloan-Kettering Institute's thirty-nine cutting-edge research core facilities serve both basic and clinical research needs, offering state-of-the-art instruments and technical staff support to students as they train and conduct research. These facilities include the Genomics Core Laboratory, which extracts and analyzes microarrays; the Stem Cell Research Facility, which characterizes and distributes human embryonic stem cells; the Gene Transfer and Somatic Cell Engineering Facility, which develops, validates, and implements procedures critical to gene transfer--related clinical research; the Antitumor Assessment Facility, which provides advisory services related to the evaluation of agents with potential antitumor activity; and the Pathology Core Facility, which performs research involving human tissue.

Living and Housing Costs

Affordable housing in proximity to the research buildings is provided to all students by Memorial Sloan-Kettering. There is a wide range of costs, which vary depending on the size of the housing unit.

Student Group

The graduate students enrolled at Gerstner Sloan-Kettering are drawn from a pool of applicants who comprise a variety of backgrounds and nationalities. Applicants are expected to hold an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution and must have completed sufficient course work in biology, chemistry, genetics, molecular biology, etc.

Student Outcomes

Graduates of the program are expected to enter into careers as researchers, scientists, and educators in excellent laboratories, hospitals, medical schools, and research institutions throughout the country and around the world.


The campus is located in Manhattan's Upper East Side, home to some of New York City's best shopping and dining. Several world-famous museums are within walking distance, and Central Park is a few blocks away. New York also offers theater, live music, outdoor recreation, and cultural attractions such as the Empire State building, all accessible by public transportation.

The Graduate School

The Gerstner Sloan-Kettering Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences offers the next generation of basic scientists an intensive Ph.D. in Cancer Biology Program to study the biological sciences through the lens of cancer--while giving students the tools they need to put them in the vanguard of research that can be applied in any area of human disease. The faculty members of the School have the exceptional ability to present novel perspectives on the molecular pathophysiology of disease to gifted young men and women eager to be part of shaping the future of research and treatment.


Prospective students must complete and submit the online application form and submit the following: official transcripts from all colleges previously attended; three letters of recommendation from advisers and/or research mentors; and official GRE scores. An in-person interview is requested from those applicants being seriously considered for admission, but the requirement may be waived if geographical constraints are overwhelming and may be substituted with telephone interviews. The deadline to apply is December 10, and interviews take place the following January.

Gerstner Sloan-Kettering Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

1275 York Avenue, Box 441

New York, New York 10021

United States

Phone: 646-888-6639

Fax: 646-422-2351


Web site:

The Faculty and Their Research

C. David Allis, Molecular Biology. The histone code and its impact on gene regulation and chromosome dynamics.

James P. Allison, Immunology. The T-cell antigen receptor complex and its effect on T-cell proliferation, survival, and cytokine production.

Grégoire Altan-Bonnet, Computational Biology. Robustness and adaptability in T-cell ligand discrimination.

Kathryn V. Anderson, Developmental Biology. Genetic pathways that direct embryonic patterning and morphogenesis in the mouse embryo.

Mary K. Baylies, Developmental Biology. Mechanisms underlying the specification and morphogenesis of organ systems, using Drosophila muscle development as a model system.

Robert Benezra, Cancer Biology and Genetics. Molecular mechanisms of tumor growth and progression, using mouse Id1 and Id3 knockout models and analysis of the spindle assembly checkpoint.

Peter Besmer, Developmental Biology. Normal and oncogenic receptor tyrosine kinase signaling in vitro and in vivo in mice.

Ronald G. Blasberg, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Development of noninvasive imaging paradigms in living organisms, using radionuclide and optical reporter systems.

Jacqueline Bromberg, Medicine. Aberrantly activated Stat3 and the mechanisms of Stat3-mediated transformation.

Luca Cartegni, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Role of alternative splicing events in the development and/or maintenance of cancer.

Raju S. K. Chaganti, Cell Biology. Genomic instability in cancer cells and its implications for clinical behavior of tumors and normal cellular developmental pathways.

Paul B. Chapman, Immunology and Medicine. Mechanisms by which the immune system recognizes cancer; development of effective immunotherapy treatments.

Jayanta Chaudhuri, Immunology. Mechanistic elucidation of immunoglobulin gene diversification.

Nai-Kong V. Cheung, Pediatrics. Development of curative therapies for the treatment of metastatic childhood solid tumors, with special emphasis on antibody-based strategies.

Gabriela Chiosis, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Pharmacological modulation of molecular chaperones in transformed systems.

Samuel J. Danishefsky, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Synthesis of antitumor natural products and of fully synthetic carbohydrate-based vaccines.

Lisa K. Denzin, Immunology. Regulation of class II MHC antigen processing by HLA-DM and HLA-DO.

Bo Dupont, Immunology. Receptor-ligand interactions regulating NK cell activation/inhibition; signal transduction pathways in NK cells; NK cells in tumor immunosurveillance and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.

James Fagin, Human Oncology and Pathogenesis. Pathogenesis of thyroid cancer; role of oncogenic kinases.

Robert P. Fisher, Molecular Biology. Control of the cell cycle by the network of cyclin-dependent kinases and CDK-activating kinases.

Yuman Fong, Surgery. Herpes-based oncolytic viral therapies in the treatment of malignancy.

Zvi Fuks, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Mechanisms of radiation-induced damage; clinical basis of radiation resistance.

Hironori Funabiki, Cell Biology. Regulation of structure and configuration of chromosomes during the cell division cycle.

William L. Gerald, Human Oncology and Pathogenesis. Identification and characterization of molecular alterations in human cancers that are responsible for clinically relevant features of the disease.

Filippo Giancotti, Cell Biology. Signaling by adhesion receptors during tumor progression and angiogenesis.

David Y. Gin, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Synthesis of complex glycoconjugate immunostimulants and anticancer, antiviral natural products.

Michael Glickman, Immunology. Molecular mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and mechanisms of nonhomologous end-joining in mycobacteria.

Jonathan Goldberg, Structural Biology. Structural and biochemical characterization of intracellular vesicle transport.

Anna-Katerina Hadjantonakis, Developmental Biology. Using mouse genetics and high-resolution imaging of living samples to study developmental pathways that direct and orchestrate establishment of the mammalian body plan.

Alan Hall, Cell Biology. Rho and Ras GTPases and the control of cell migration, morphogenesis, and polarity.

Ulrich G. Hammerling, Immunology. Mechanisms underlying immunodeficiency caused by vitamin A deprivation.

Eric C. Holland, Cancer Biology and Genetics. Molecular mechanisms underlying pathogenesis of CNS tumors and modeling of these cancers in mice.

Alan N. Houghton, Immunology. Immune response to cancer; immune recognition of self and mutated molecules; development of new immunotherapies.

Hedvig Hricak, Radiology. Methodologies of molecular imaging of prostate and gynecologic tumors.

Jerard Hurwitz, Molecular Biology. Mechanisms of eukaryotic DNA replication and the isolation and characterization of proteins involved.

Morgan Huse, Immunology. Study of intracellular signaling dynamics in lymphocytes.

Prasad V. Jallepalli, Molecular Biology. Mechanisms of high-fidelity chromosome segregation in human cells.

Maria Jasin, Developmental Biology. Double-strand break repair and genomic integrity in mammalian cells and the relationship to tumor suppression.

Xuejun Jiang, Cell Biology. Programmed cell death, molecular mechanisms, and its roles in tumorigenesis.

Johanna Joyce, Cancer Biology and Genetics. Understanding how a tumor cell co-opts its environment to promote its growth and progression.

Alexandra L. Joyner, Developmental Biology. Genetic and cellular regulation of neural development and adult stem cell biology.

Scott N. Keeney, Molecular Biology. Molecular mechanisms of the initiation of meiotic recombination.

Thomas J. Kelly, Molecular Biology. Regulatory mechanisms that control DNA replication during the cell cycle of eukaryotic cells.

Anna Marie Kenney, Cancer Biology and Genetics. Signaling pathways regulating proliferation in brain development and cancer.

Robert J. Klein, Cancer Biology and Genetics. Identification of genes responsible for inherited predisposition to cancer.

Andrew Koff, Molecular Biology. Role of cell-cycle inhibitors in differentiation and how their loss affects tumorigenesis.

Richard N. Kolesnick, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Role of ceramide signaling in radiation-induced vascular dysfunction and tumor regression.

Jason A. Koutcher, Medicine. Application of magnetic resonance spectroscopy and imaging to enhance therapeutic gain of different antineoplastic modalities.

Elizabeth H. Lacy, Developmental Biology. Mechanisms of gastrulation and organogenesis during mouse development.

Marc Ladanyi, Human Oncology and Pathogenesis. Molecular pathogenesis of human translocation-associated sarcomas.

Eric Lai, Developmental Biology. Control of developmental patterning by Notch signaling and microRNAs.

Steven M. Larson, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Molecular imaging in animals and humans, using high-resolution diagnostic instruments.

Ming Li, Immunology. Mechanisms of T-cell homeostasis, tolerance, and immunity and their relevance to autoimmune diseases and cancer.

Yueming Li, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Function and regulation of transmembrane proteases; development of novel protease-based cancer therapies.

Christopher D. Lima, Structural Biology. Structural biology of posttranslational protein modification and RNA processing.

Jidong Liu, Cell Biology. Molecular mechanism of RNA interference, function, and regulation of mammalian cytoplasmic processing bodies.

Philip O. Livingston, Medicine. Tumor vaccinology; approaches to augmenting antibody and T-cell responses to defined cancer antigens.

Stephen B. Long, Structural Biology. Structural biology of ion channels and enzymatic membrane proteins.

Kenneth J. Marians, Molecular Biology. Mechanisms of replication restart and chromosome segregation.

Joan Massagué, Cancer Biology and Genetics. Control of cell growth and phenotype; delineating mechanisms of relevance to tumor progression, metastasis, and response to therapy.

Malcolm A. S. Moore, Cell Biology. Biology of hematopoietic stem cells in normal and malignant lymphohematopoiesis.

Dimitar B. Nikolov, Structural Biology. Structural, biophysical, and biochemical characterization of molecular mechanisms of cell-cell interactions and signal transduction in the nervous system.

Stephen D. Nimer, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Defining molecular and biological abnormalities and underlying transcriptional regulation mechanisms involved in development and growth of hematologic cancers.

Kenneth Offit, Medicine. Cancer genetics; gene characterization; genetic/epidemiologic studies of cancer-predisposing alleles; therapeutic, prognostic, and psychosocial translation of these findings.

Richard J. O'Reilly, Immunology. Genetic disparities and cellular interactions between donor and host that affect allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation.

Eric G. Pamer, Immunology. T-cell and innate inflammatory responses to bacterial and fungal infections.

William Pao, Human Oncology and Pathogenesis. Lung cancer; lung tumorigenesis.

Gavril W. Pasternak, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Molecular mechanisms of opioid receptor actions, analgesics, and G-protein-coupled receptors.

Dinshaw Patel, Structural Biology. Structural biology of macromolecular recognition: RNA catalysis, RNA interference, and bypass of DNA damage.

Nikola P. Pavletich, Structural Biology. Structural biology of oncogenes and tumor suppressors.

John H. J. Petrini, Molecular Biology. Repair of chromosomal breaks and activation of DNA damage-induced cell-cycle checkpoints.

Mark S. Ptashne, Molecular Biology. Mechanisms of gene regulation.

Marilyn Resh, Cell Biology. Regulation of protein function by fatty acylation; mechanism of retroviral particle assembly; mechanisms of normal and malignant glial cell growth.

Neal Rosen, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Understanding biochemical mechanisms underlying phenotypes caused by tyrosine kinase activation in epithelial tumors and development of new therapeutic strategies.

Michael Sadelain, Immunology. Mechanisms governing transgene expression, stem cell engineering, and genetic strategies to enhance immunity against cancer.

Chris Sander, Computational Biology. Using computational biology to analyze and simulate biological processes at different levels of organization.

Derek B. Sant-Angelo, Immunology. Genetic pathways that govern positive selection of T cells in the thymus.

Charles L. Sawyers, Human Oncology and Pathogenesis. Molecularly targeted cancer therapy.

David A. Scheinberg, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Discovery and development of novel, specific immunotherapeutic agents and targeted nanodevices for cancer therapy.

Gary K. Schwartz, Medicine. Identification of cell-cycle inhibitors that promote chemotherapy-induced apoptosis and their use in cancer therapy.

Songhai Shi, Developmental Biology. Molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying mammalian neuronal development and circuit formation.

Stewart Shuman, Molecular Biology. Mechanisms and structures of mRNA cap-forming enzymes and means by which capping is coupled to transcription.

Sam Singer, Surgery. Development of a novel clinically relevant biochemical and molecular system of prognostic determinants for soft-tissue sarcoma.

David Solit, Human Oncology and Pathogenesis. Human oncology and pathogenesis; genomics; oncogenes and tumor suppressors; cancer therapeutics; clinical trials.

David R. Spriggs, Medicine. Molecular mechanisms of drug resistance in ovarian cancer.

Lorenz P. Studer, Developmental Biology. Stem cells as a tool to understand normal and pathological development in CNS and to develop cell-based strategies for neural repair.

Derek S. Tan, Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry. Diversity-oriented synthesis and rational design for cancer chemical biology and drug discovery.

Paul J. Tempst, Molecular Biology. Development of proteomic technologies and approaches for studying eukaryotic transcriptional machineries and for cancer biomarker discovery.

Marcel van den Brink, Immunology. Immunology of bone marrow transplantation.

Harold Varmus, Cancer Biology and Genetics. Molecular mechanisms of oncogenesis; mouse models; Wnt signaling pathways; human lung cancer.

Jose Vilar, Computational Biology. Computational modeling of biological processes at molecular, cellular, and population levels of organization.

Harel Weinstein, Computational Biology. Structural, dynamic, and integrative determinants of molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying physiological function and pharmacological activity.

Hans-Guido Wendel, Cancer Biology and Genetics. Modeling genetics of tumor initiation, progression, and treatment response in vivo.

James W. Young, Medicine. Innate and adaptive immunity against tumors and viruses stimulated by human dendritic cells.

Jennifer A. Zallen, Developmental Biology. Generation of tissue structure through the collective action of cell populations.

Xiaolan Zhao, Molecular Biology. Chromosomal organization and function; role of sumoylation in chromosomal metabolism.

Location & Contact

Gerstner Sloan Kettering Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (Program in Cancer Biology)

Gerstner Sloan Kettering Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

1275 York Avenue, Box 441
New York, NY 10021
United States

Ms. Linda Burnley

Associate Dean

Phone: 646-888-6639

Main Office

Phone: 646-888-6639
Fax: 646-422-2351

Request More Info

Degrees & Award

  • Degrees Offered
    • Major Degree Levels Offered
    • Biological And Biomedical Sciences Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
  • Degrees Awarded
    • Master's Degrees Not reported
    • Doctoral Degrees Not reported
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported
    • * Shows the number of degrees awarded for the last academic year that data was reported.
  • Earning Your Degree
    • Part-time study available? No
    • Evening/weekend programs available? No
    • Distance learning programs available? No
    • Terminal master's degree available? Not reported
  • Degree Requirements
    • Master's Degrees Not reported
    • Doctoral Degrees
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported


  • Acceptance Rate
    • Applied Not Reported
    • Accepted Not Reported
    • Acceptance Rate Not Reported
    • Enrolled Not Reported
  • Applying
    • Application Fee - Domestic Not Reported
    • Application Fee - International Not Reported
    • Electronic applications accepted? Yes
    • Applications processed on a rolling basis? Not Reported
  • Application Deadlines
    • Type Domestic International Priority Date
    • Fall deadline December 1st Not Reported Not Reported
    • Winter deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
    • Spring deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
  • Entrance Requirements
    • Master's DegreesNot Reported
    • Doctoral's DegreesGRE, transcripts, three letters of recommendation
    • First-Professional's DegreesNot Reported
    • Other Advanced DegreesNot Reported
    • International DegreesTOEFL required

Tuition & Fees

  • Tuition & Fees *
    • Tuition & FeesNot Reported
    • *Average dollar amount (tuition & fees) required to complete the degree
  • Financial Support
    • Financial award applicants must submitNot Reported
    • Application deadlines for financial awardsNot Reported
    • Types of financial support availablefellowship package including stipend ($33,773), full-tuition scholarship, first-year allowance, and comprehensive medical and dental insurance

Student Body

  • Gender
    • Total Graduate Students64
    • Female Percentage50%
    • Male Percentage50%
  • Participation
    • Total Graduate Students64
    • Part-time Percentage0%
    • Full-time Percentage100%
  • Ethnicity
    • Hispanic / Latino2%
    • Black / African American2%
    • White / Caucasian90%
    • American Indian / Alaskan Native0%
    • Asian7%
    • Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific Islander0%
    • Two or more races0%
    • Unknown-1%


  • Faculty Breakout
    • Total Faculty134
    • Full-time Percentage100%
    • Part-time Percentage0%
    • Female Percentage17%
    • Male Percentage83%


  • Existing Research
    • Focus of faculty researchBiochemistry and molecular biology, biophysics/structural biology, computational biology, genetics, immunology
    • Externally sponsored research expenditures last yearNot Reported




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