In BBS, we bring together the best of fundamental mechanistic research and translational science focused on curing disease

Apply Now


The BBS faculty is comprised of scientific leaders from every discipline

Learn More


Within BBS, you have the freedom to choose your educational path with supportive communities to help you excel

Learn More


Reach your scientific and professional goals in the heart of a vibrant city and world-class research environment

Learn More

A Warm Welcome

David Van Vactor
Professor of Cell Biology
BBS PhD Program
 Monica Colaiacovo
Professor of Genetics
Associate Director,
BBS PhD Program


The Biological and Biomedical Sciences (BBS) Program at Harvard offers Ph.D. training in the biosciences, built outward from core training in contemporary genetics, biochemistry, and molecular, cellular, and mechanistic biology. Under the BBS umbrella are nine engaging research communities comprised of basic science departments and interdepartmental programs at Harvard Medical School. We think of these communities as our “neighborhoods within the city”. Each provides a close-knit environment where faculty and trainees with common interests work together to advance research in their field and participate in training activities tailored to the diversity of career trajectories for today’s PhDs. BBS combines the unparalleled choice of research lab, made possible by its unique breadth and depth, with the cohesiveness of shared-interest communities typical of smaller departmental programs. Come join us.


A Living Embodiment of our Community


Harvard Medical School is committed to convening and nurturing a diverse community of individuals dedicated to promoting excellence and leadership in medicine and science through education, research, clinical care and service. Our unique perspectives, talents, experiences and contributions as HMS students, trainees, faculty, staff and administrators are the foundation and drivers of our excellence.


We acknowledge the strengths and weaknesses of our history and actively promote social justice, challenge discrimination and address disparities and inequities.


We celebrate the multiple dimensions of diversity that each member of our community offers, including, but not limited to, race, ethnicity, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic circumstance, national origin, geographic background, immigration status, ability and disability, physical characteristics, veteran status, political ideology, religious belief and age.


We provide a safe environment where all members of our community can engage in dialogue, question, learn and contribute to their fullest potential.


We respect the dignity of all members of our community and aspire to ensure that all feel valued and supported.


We provide education and training that emphasize respect for differences in culture, language and life experience and that address both health disparities and the role that implicit and explicit bias can play in decision making.


We advance diversity and inclusion in recruitment, admissions, hiring, retention and promotion.


We prioritize diversity and inclusion as we develop HMS policies, practices and procedures.


We support community engagement and partner with our local, national and global communities to advance the diversity pipeline and eliminate health disparities.


We continuously monitor our diversity and inclusion efforts to ensure that the outcomes bring HMS closer to reflecting the diversity found in our patients, community and nation.


link to the full statement


Follow Us

In the Spotlight


HMS COVID-19 policy

Guidance for HMS Community around Coronavirus (COVID-19):


HMS Student Health & Safety Resources

View current resources here.


Gut Check

Braden Tierney

BBS PhD candidate Braden Tierney is first author in a study published May 18 in Nature Communications linking gut microbe genes to an array of human diseases.

Read the article in HMS News.


How a mutated coronavirus evades immune system defenses

Fifth-year BBS student Lars Clark is a co-author of a new study led by HMS scientists which offers a look into this interplay, shedding light on the ways in which compromised immunity may render SARS-CoV-2 fitter and capable of evading the immune system. Read more in the Harvard Gazette.


BBS Student Selected as Hope Scholar

BBS student Leeza Santiago Millan is one of 3 recipients of the BSCP HOPE Scholarship.
Join us on Monday, October 5, 2020 at 7:00 PM EDT for an Evening of Hope!

Read more and RSVP to the event here.

View the current BSCP Newsletter.


2 BBS students awarded HHMI Gilliam Fellowship

Alana Van DervortLillian Horin Alana Van Dervort (left) and Lillian Horin (right) are among the 45 recipients of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute's Gilliam Fellowships to Support Diversity in Science. Read more here.


BBS student, Xavier Du Maine, is featured in the Harvard Medicine Magazine

In Pandemic/Student Perspectives, Harvard Magazine spotlights Five HMS students as they consider how the 2020 pandemic has changed their lives but not their commitment to medicine and biomedical research.


Career and Professional Development Navigator

The Career and Professional Development Navigator is a one-stop service center connecting Harvard bioscience master’s, doctoral and professional students with resources, events, news, and providers related to skills and professional development.  

visit site here


New Harvard Medical School Diversity Statement Released

Read the full statement here.

View DMS Diversity website.

Visit the Minority Students in Biomedical Science website.



Meet the BBS Office

Please reach out to program leadership and staff via email, phone, or zoom for advice, merriment, and good conversation.



Life @HarvardMed

View this post on Instagram

The banners have been raised! 🎓 #HarvardMed

A post shared by Harvard Medical School (@harvardmed) on