Biophysics, literally the physics of life, enables scientists working at the intersection of physics, biology and chemistry to collaborate with clinicians, mathematicians and engineers to develop a predictive understanding of biological processes, including cancer, development, infection and the immune system.  Novel tools and techniques now permit biophysicists to see and measure what was once invisible. Physics has long played a prominent role in biology – Watson, Crick and Franklin, discoverers of the structure of DNA, considered themselves biophysicists – but that role has increased dramatically in recent years as the development of new methods has transformed our understanding of biological systems, their complexity and their molecular details.

The University of Notre Dame has a rich history of molecular biophysics research across disciplines. The recent establishment of the new Stavropoulos Center for Interdisciplinary Biophysics will strengthen these efforts across campus, attracting elite research talent at all levels of career development.

News

Common cholesterol drugs could slow spread of breast cancer to brain

Common cholesterol drugs could slow spread of breast cancer to brain

A new study from the University of Notre Dame shows drugs used to treat high cholesterol could interfere with the way breast cancer cells adapt to the microenvironment in the brain, preventing the cancer from taking hold. Patients with breast cancer who experience this type of metastasis typically survive for only months after the diagnosis.

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Understand and Fight: Notre Dame researchers and the COVID-19 pandemic

Understand and Fight: Notre Dame researchers and the COVID-19 pandemic

The hero in Mary Shelley’s “The Last Man,” her second sweeping political science fiction after “Frankenstein,” is left alone in Rome, in a post-apocalyptic world. A global plague apparently took the lives of everyone else, yet he discerns a duty to forge ahead, no matter what.

Published in 1826, the novel mirrored Shelley’s life as she despaired at the loss of several of her loved ones. Her sister Fanny died by suicide. Her husband, the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, drowned after a sailing accident. She lost another friend, the poet Lord Byron, to infection. Two of her toddlers died — one of malaria, and another from a fever. She kept a kind of plague journal, according to Eileen Hunt Botting

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