Immunology and Microbiology Concentration

Immunology and Microbiology Concentration

NOTE: This page is for detailed information about the Immunology and Microbiology Advanced Concentration only. All inquiries concerning admission to the BMS Admissions office at More information on admissions is also available on the Admissions Page.

Program of Study | Program Faculty and Research | Program Contacts


The Advanced Concentration in Immunology and Microbiology is one of eight advanced concentrations leading to the Ph.D. degree under the auspices of the Graduate Program (BMS) in Biomedical Sciences at the University of Florida College of Medicine.

The Immunology and Microbiology program offers graduate training in cellular and molecular immunology including immunopathology, immunogenetics, and autoimmunity and in microbiology, including virology, bacteriology, microbial genetics, and microbial pathogenesis.

The program is designed for maximum flexibility in the educational experience of the individual student and provides broad opportunities for training in immunology and microbiology, emphasizing both the cellular and molecular aspects.  Following admission, students complete a year of common interdisciplinary core curriculum of classroom studies.  In addition, the students participate in seminars, journal clubs, and research rotations. At the end of the first year students choose a research advisor from approximately 200 faculty members belonging to the basic science departments of the College of Medicine and the College of Dentistry.

The faculty members of the Immunology & Microbiology advanced concentration occupy research space in the College of Medicine, College of Dentistry, and Veterans Administration Medical Center in Gainesville.

Learn about David Bloom, Ph.D.’s work on novel therapy development for Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV).

Dr. Bloom has one of the College of Medicine’s training grants for Basic Microbiology and Infectious Disease (T32AI007110-32).

Program of Study

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Students interested in pursuing bacteriology, virology or immunology research as a student in the Immunology & Microbiology advanced program are strongly encouraged to register in the spring semester of their first year for two, semester-long courses: Infectious Diseases (GMS 6121 – 3 credits) and Principles of Immunology (GMS 6140 – 4 credits). A major impetus for students to participate in both courses simultaneously is the significant integration between the classes that will be included in the twice weekly discussion sessions. It is our goal that these courses will provide the foundation for each aspect of our advanced curriculum. We expect students in the advanced courses of all MSI three tracks (Bacteriology, Immunology, and Virology) to have the knowledge obtained from these two courses.

First-year students with very strong backgrounds in immunology and/or microbiology may begin taking advanced courses after discussing their educational background and goals with an Advanced Concentration Co-Coordinator the Associate Dean for Graduate Education. Instructor’s consent must be obtained before registering for courses.

Suggested Courses for Advanced Students: Most Immunology & Microbiology students are expected to take about four of the six minimum required credits of advanced coursework within the Immunology & Microbiology concentration offerings, but the final selection is determined by the student and approved by the student’s supervisory committee.  Advanced graduate courses are organized by the Immunology & Microbiology advanced concentration and may be taken to fulfill the minimum advanced course requirement of at least 6 credits beyond the first year are listed at the following two web pages:

Fall Semester Advanced Courses   | Spring Semester Advanced Courses

For students interested in bacteriology

GMS 6038, Bacterial Genetics & Physiology (1 credit) is offered in the Fall.  GMS 6121, Infectious Diseases (3 credits), a comprehensive introduction to bacteriology and bacterial pathogenesis including a week each of virology and mycology, is offered in the Spring and Fall.

The Pathobiology Department at the College of Veterinary Medicine offers a “three pack” of advanced modules focused on the molecular pathogenesis of specific parasitic or bacterial diseases (see VME 6464 & VME 6934) in the Spring.  Additional Spring courses include GMS 6040, Host-Pathogen Interactions (1 credit) and GMS 6169, Special Topics – Antimicrobial Strategies (1 credit).

For students interested in virology

A “three pack” of advanced modules is offered in the Spring (GMS 6034, GMS 6035, GMS 6036). Fall semester advanced modules will include:  GMS 6382, Special Topics in Immunology;  VME 6505, Autoimmunity;  and GMS 6040, Host-Pathogen Interactions.

Journal Club: The Immunology & Microbiology journal club meets each Thursday at 12:00-1:00 p.m. during the Fall semester.  All Immunology & Microbiology students are required to register for the Immunology & Microbiology journal club (GMS 6921, Immunology/Microbiology Journal Colloquy) each Fall semester beginning in their second year.  Most Fall semester journal club presentations are usually based on a general theme, e.g. vaccines, immune response to infection, emerging pathogens.
Immunology & Microbiology students must also register for a journal club in the Spring semester, but they may register for the “specialty” journal club of their choice, e.g. immunology, bacteriology, virology, HIV, etc.

The Faculty and Their Research

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Meet David Ostrov, Ph.D. and learn about his research on proteins and the identification of druggable targets:

For a list of faculty members currently recruiting graduate students in the Immunology & Microbiology advanced program for 2020-2021, please click here.

Concentration Contacts

Co-Coordinators, Immunology & Microbiology Advanced Concentration

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José A. Lemos, Ph.D.
Graduate Coordinator
Department of Oral Biology
Phone: (352) 273-8843 | Email:

David Ostrov, Ph.D.
Graduate Coordinator
Department of Pathology, Immunology and Laboratory Medicine
Phone: (352) 273-8166 | Email:

Scott Tibbetts, Ph.D.
Graduate Coordinator
Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology
Phone: (352) 273-5628 | Email:

Kris Minkoff
Graduate Administrator
Phone: (352) 273-6380 | Email: