Laboratory Departments

Students in the Medical Laboratory Science program complete didactic coursework and associated clinical rotations in each of the following laboratory departments:

  • Hematology: The analysis of blood samples to aid in the diagnosis or monitoring of anemia, infection, bleeding disorder, leukemia, or lymphoma or to monitor a known condition
  • Blood Bank (Immunohematology or Transfusion Services): The testing of patient blood to determine blood type and to detect presence of antibodies in order to ensure that donated blood products are compatible with the patient's immune system
  • Coagulation (Hemostasis & Thrombosis): The analysis of patient plasma to detect clotting disorders as well monitor coagulation in patients who use anticoagulants such as warfarin or heparin
  • Urinalysis: The analysis of urine samples to help monitor kidney function, determine if a patient has a genitourinary infection, or aid in a comprehensive analysis of patient health
  • Clinical Chemistry: The testing of analytes such as hormones, enzymes, proteins, and lipids found in blood and body fluids in order to indirectly monitor the function of several organ systems
  • Toxicology: The quantitative analysis of therapeutic drug levels to ensure that safe doses are maintained and the qualitative/quantitative testing for the presence and level of drugs of abuse
  • Immunology (Immunopathology): The detection of antigens and antibodies to infectious diseases as well as autoimmune diseases, the analysis of patient immune system functions, and the use of flow cytometry to diagnose and differentiate leukemias
  • Microbiology: Looks for the presence of microorganisms in a variety of sample sources to determine if a patient has an infection, identify the source of the infection, and determine dosages of antibiotics that are needed to treat the infection
  • Virology: The detection of viral particles and antibodies directed towards viruses 
  • Parasitology: The detection and identification of parasites in patient samples
  • Molecular Diagnostics: Can be divided further into Molecular Infection Disease, which is the analysis of DNA and RNA to determine if a patient has an infection; Molecular Genetics, the identification of mutated molecular markers to determine a patient's risk for and prognosis disorders; and Cytogenetics, in which chromosomal analysis is used.

All didactic coursework and clinical rotations are performed in the diagnostic laboratories at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. These laboratory departments are located in The Vanderbilt Clinic (TVC) on the main campus and at Vanderbilt's One Hundred Oaks location.