Specialist Program in Pathobiology

At the forefront of medical research and discovery, the Pathobiology Specialist Program offers you the opportunity to study the causes and mechanisms of disease and their resulting impact on human health.

Investigate pivotal questions such as: 

  • Why do certain cells become cancerous? 
  • Why do particular neurons degenerate? 
  • Why did that atherosclerotic plaque form? 

These and similar questions are fundamental to making medical breakthroughs. 

What is pathobiology?

Pathobiology encompasses: 

Pathology: the nature of changes produced by disease. 

Pathogenesis: the mechanisms and changes in disease that occur at the molecular, cellular and tissue level. 

Pathophysiology: the changes in organ and systems function that accompany disease. 

Key disciplines in Pathobiology include: 

  • biochemistry 
  • cellular and molecular biology 
  • genetics 
  • immunology 
  • physiology 
  • histology 

Why study with us

  • Interact with expert faculty in small classes. 
  • Gain extensive knowledge and experience in a wide spectrum of biomedical research areas. 
  • Observe firsthand the application of the causes and mechanisms of disease to human health. 
  • Enjoy Toronto’s vibrant city life outside the classroom with our undergraduate student organization. 

What you will study: courses

First and Second Year: You will take foundation courses similar to any program in the basic medical sciences, including biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics. 

Third Year: You begin an in-depth study of disease mechanisms while taking additional courses in cell and molecular biology, anatomy and physiology, immunology, and infectious disease. 

Fourth Year: Fourth year offers you a range of specialized courses in areas including cancer, infection, cardiovascular disease and neurodegenerative disease. During this final year, you will carry out a research project under the personal supervision of one of our faculty members. 

View the full list of courses

Research opportunities

With over 350 faculty members located across Toronto, LMP is involved in a broad spectrum of research at state-of-the-art facilities.

We offer exciting opportunities:

The benefits of undergraduate research

  • Learning proper laboratory practice. 
  • Developing experimental and critical evaluation skills. 
  • Enhancing communication, collaboration and networking skills. 
  • Discovering your area of interest and gaining valuable experience for future research.   


You will be well prepared for your future endeavours, whether you decide to pursue:

  • graduate studies in medical research;
  • medical school;
  • a career in academic, industrial, pharmaceutical or governmental laboratories; or
  • employment in government, regulatory agencies, law and environment.