Why Physiology and Neurobiology?
Why you should study Physiology and Neurobiology...
- You will have research opportunities ranging from the molecular to the cellular to the level of the living system with lots of opportunities to cross these levels.
- You will learn multidisciplinary approaches to studying biological systems.
- You will join the company of life scientists engaged in examining how living systems work at many levels of interest.
- You will prepare yourself to be a broadly educated and capable scientistN a valuable commodity in future jobs.
What is Physiology?
Physiology is the study of how living organisms work. Physiologists use the entire spectrum of research tools and approaches, from the molecular to the cellular to intact systems, to study biological function. The Department of Physiology and Neurobiology at Dartmouth has maintained this broad focus since S. Marsh Tenney founded the department in 1956.
In Dr. Tenney's words (including gender-specific pronouns that were characteristic of the time), "The physiologist is obliged to keep the whole always in mind. He accepts the tactical necessity of reductionism to get at and understand the parts, but, once done, it is for him only the beginning, never the end. Synthesis is his overriding strategy." (Marsh Tenney, 1969)
Modern physiologists have unprecedented resources with which to pursue biological knowledge and understanding. As stated by John A. Williams, a recent President of the American Physiological Society: "We live in exciting but challenging times. Never before have we had the spectrum of tools and techniques now available to delve deeply into the mysteries of complex organisms. We can relate specific processes to molecular structure through recombinant DNA technology and expression of proteins in model cells used as physiological test tubes. Moreover, physiology is becoming central to understanding the function of genes and gene products in the setting of the organ or organism and how this is impacted by the environment."
Why Physiology and Neurobiology at Dartmouth?
In Physiology and Neurobiology at Dartmouth, you will have the opportunity to study a topic without limitation of the level at which you work. You may, for example, chose to evaluate an endocrine control system beginning at the cellular level, branching to investigate molecular mechanisms as desired, or, perhaps to the organ or systems level if that is where your interests take you.
Your future in Physiology and Neurobiology will permit you to work at all levels of research. In the Molecular, Cellular and Systems Physiology Program at Dartmouth you can begin your life-long experience in multidisciplinary research in finding out how biological systems work.