Program Benefits

  • Human disease-focused coursework
  • Clinical experience
  • Social and academic events
  • Annual retreat
  • Alumni network

The principal focus of the Leder Human Biology & Translational Medicine (LHB) program is on the training of graduate students who are interested in careers in translational research. This program provides the organizational, curricular, and intellectual infrastructure for creating a community of students and faculty interested in disease-oriented research and in the translation of principles of human biology and disease mechanisms to clinical applications. Students need not undertake thesis work in this area, but must be interested in future work in this domain.

The LHB Program provides PhD predoctoral students at Harvard University with a working knowledge of the fundamentals of human biology and disease, primarily through a series of courses, to enrich their basic science training and broaden their research interests. The LHB Program also demystifies the culture and practice of medicine, facilitating future collaborations with clinicians and physician-scientists, through activities designed to bring students into a hospital environment into direct contact with physicians, patients, medical students, and physician-scientists. The full program runs for one and one half years, beginning in Spring of the G1 Year, and is interdigitated with a student’s other graduate program requirements. Students who successfully complete the LHB Program will receive a certificate in human biology and translational medicine with their PhDs. Students who do not enter the LHB program but wish to learn about human biology will have access to LHB courses on an ad hoc basis. After the formal LHB Program is completed, students will be encouraged to continue to develop careers in human biology through ongoing mentoring and extracurricular activities throughout their time at Harvard University.

Time commitment

1.5 years (in the context of a Harvard PhD program)


Doctoral training in fundamentals of human biology and disease.


Enrollment in a Harvard Integrated Life Sciences (HILS) doctoral program

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