Ph.D. Program in Molecular Immunology & Microbiology

The Department of Microbiology, Immunology & Molecular Genetics is home to the Molecular Immunology & Microbiology (MIM) discipline of the Integrated Biomedical Sciences Ph.D. Program. The diverse research environment provided at UT Health San Antonio and in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology & Molecular Genetics is perfectly suited to offer Ph.D. students a unique training experience in research areas involving molecular, cellular, and systems studies of the host’s immune system in health and disease. There is also a great breadth of basic science and clinical research opportunities at UT Health San Antonio that only an integrated health science campus such as ours can provide.

The classroom and research activities of the Molecular Immunology & Microbiology (MIM) discipline consider immunology as it relates to host defense against microbial infections and to the development of vaccines that enhance those defenses, to the developmental and genetic processes that lead to effective healthy immunity, and to instances when defective immunity results in autoimmune diseases, allergy and cancer. Research to explore these biomedical problems is performed in spacious, newly renovated labs with state-of-the-art equipment, complemented by numerous departmental facilities designed for studies requiring confocal microscopy, nucleic acid sequencing and analysis, flow cytometry and infectious tissue culture. Importantly, 8 new tenure-track faculty have recently been added to our roster of nearly 60 primary and adjunct faculty giving us the high energy and expertise that has allowed us to create a program of study and research tailored to the interests of each individual student in our discipline.

Our program also offers numerous important training experiences and opportunities to our students that go beyond the formal course work:

Seminars by outstanding invited speakers

Nationally and internationally acclaimed experts in the fields of immunity, autoimmunity, microbiology, cancer immunobiology and molecular genetics present weekly seminars.  Students have opportunities to interact one-on-one with these exceptional scientists.

A community of scholars

Graduate students look forward to the annual Department of MIMG Spring Retreat, Bugs, Antibodies and Lymphocytes Under the Texas Sky”, an event that provides our undergraduate students, master students, PhD students and postdoctoral fellowsan opportunity to participate in an exciting exchange of ideas by presenting posters and oral presentations. In addition, the students get to meet with a group of extraordinary, nationally renowned scientists invited by the department to present their latest breakthroughs,

In addition, the San Antonio Vaccine Development Conference, “Infection, Immunity and Vaccines” serves as a Fall Retreat. This conference, focusing on vaccine development and strategies, brings together the pre-doctoral and post-doctoral trainees and faculty from local universities and research institutions in the surrounding San Antonio area. In addition, distinguished experts from around the country are invited to give formal lectures of their work.

Travel awards

Students who wish to attend national conferences can compete for monetary awards for travel.

Mentoring opportunities

Our graduate students have the opportunity to foster the development of their mentoring skills by participating in the training of the exceptionally talented students in our MIMG Undergraduate Research Program and our MS program in Immunology & Infection.

Overall, the Molecular Immunology & Microbiology (MIM) discipline of the Integrated Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program provide graduate students with a comprehensive interdisciplinary foundation in biomedical studies that is essential to excel in our 21st century world of translational science, and to advance into future careers in biomedical research and education.


To learn more about the MIM PhD Program contact us today at or apply now!

Contact Information

Elizabeth A. Leadbetter, Ph.D.

Discipline Director

Elizabeth Spillmann

Program Coordinator
(210) 567-3952

Application Deadline

Fall/January 1 (Priority)
Fall/March 16 (Final)


Students receive a stipend of $30,000. Tuition, fees, and basic student health insurance are covered by the program.

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