Contact Us

Mailing Address
SSPB Program
Rice University
6500 Main Street, MS-180
Houston, Texas 77030-1400

Physical Address
Ph.D. Program in Systems, Synthetic, and Physical Biology
Suite 170 BioScience Research Collaborative (BRC)
Rice University
6500 Main Street
Houston, Texas 77005


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  • Chromatography provides new way to peer into pores
  • Project aims to help brain fix itself
  • Scientists decode structure at root of muscular disease
  • Deep-diving whales could hold answer for synthetic blood
  • Modified bacteria become a multicellular circuit
  • Gas sensors promise advances in Earth Science

Welcome to the Ph.D. program in Systems, Synthetic, and Physical Biology (SSPB)

Systems, Synthetic and Physical Biology (SSPB) is a new field that combines experimental and theoretical approaches to solve both fundamental and applied problems in the biosciences, biotechnology and medicine. SSPB is emerging as one of the most important areas of life sciences of this century. While the past several decades have been dubbed the Information Age, the coming era will likely be a biological one where organisms are engineered to produce new medicines, fuels and materials. In order to reach the potential of engineered biological systems, we must first understand the organizing principles of life. SSPB researchers operate at this interface, aiming to understand the molecular language of life, so that new biological functions can be reliably designed. For more information regarding this program, click here.

2013 students 
The inaugural 2013 SSPB class (from left to right, front row: Dongya Jia, Juexiao Wang, Felix Ekness, Brianna Kuypers, Qian Mei; from left to right, top row: Tyler McLaughlin, Josh Atkinson)

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Research Spotlight

BCM, Rice make major advance in structural biology
BCM, Rice make major advance in structural biology
Professor Jianpeng Ma, who holds joint appointments at both BCM and Rice, and Rice graduate student Billy Poon have discovered a new way to analyze the moving parts of large proteins. »


Josh Atkinson is one of 18 Rice students recently awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship.
Click here for full story!


Center for Theoretical Biological Physics (CTBP) Seminar Series
November 24, 2015, 12:30-1:30pm
Laising Yen 
BioScience Research Collaborative Building (BRC)
10th Floor, Room 1060A/B
Rice University
6500 Main Street
Houston, Texas 77030