Welcome from the Associate Dean and Director of the School of Biomedical Sciences


Welcome to the School of Biomedical Sciences (SBMS). Our School unites the Departments of Anatomy & Cell Biology, Biochemistry, Biomedical Engineering, Human Genetics, Microbiology & Immunology, Pharmacology & Therapeutics and Physiology, as well as the Goodman Cancer Institute and the Victor Phillip Dahdaleh Institute of Genomic Medicine, within McGill’s Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.

Established in 2020, the SBMS provides a multidisciplinary environment for training in the biomedical sciences and fosters innovative, game-changing research that improves health at the fundamental level. Our mission is to promote excellence in research and training, by bringing together internationally renowned researchers in all areas of biomedical research and by providing our researchers with the best resources.

With more than 1,500 undergraduate students, about 650 graduate students and nearly 200 faculty members, our School is one of the leading institutes in biomedical sciences education and research in Canada and internationally. In 2023 so far, McGill-affiliated projects based in the SBMS have secured more than $23 million in research funds from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), highlighting that the talent of our world-class researchers is recognized nationally.

Within the structure of the School, our graduate students can tailor their research experience exactly to their career needs and become elite scientific leaders in their fields. This student-centered approach allows our graduate students the flexibility to gain exposure to the range of compelling areas of research we have on offer. In addition, the McGill Biomedical Research Accelerator (MBRA) summer program gives undergraduates from Canada and around the world the chance to gain valuable research experience before pursuing graduate studies.

To facilitate their investigations, our researchers and learners have access to McGill’s top-notch core facilities. Our multidisciplinary, interprofessional approach, including collaborations with clinical partners at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, the Montreal Neurological Institute and the Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, gives our trainees opportunities to team up with experts in both basic sciences and patient care. This approach continues to advance in our educational programs, including the recently launched Graduate Certificate in Translational Biomedical Science Research.

Situated in the multicultural, multilingual city of Montreal, McGill’s diverse setting is reflected in its student, academic and staff populations, which include the best and brightest from around the world. However, we recognize that we can and must do better in this area, and our School is committed to fulfilling the Faculty and University’s aim to become more inclusive of people from all backgrounds.

One example of the way the SBMS is contributing to this is through the Melville Undergraduate Research Bursary in Pharmacology, which provides funding for a student from an underrepresented group to complete a summer internship in a Pharmacology & Therapeutics laboratory.

We are fortunate to have a richness of expertise across all our departments, with each one producing leading-edge evidence on the basic processes behind health and disease. However, what sets our School apart is the level of interaction and cooperation between our teams. This culture of collaboration is central not only to the School’s continued success, but also to our impact on innovations that directly advance health care.

Biomedical research is at its core a lifelong journey of discovery for the inquisitive, the creative and the determined. At the SBMS, we hope you will join us on your own journey, and help us grow into something even greater.

Professor Alvin Shrier, PhD
Interim Associate Dean and Director,
School of Biomedical Sciences



Back to top