Content Courses

These courses focus on the scientific fundamentals and methodologies of contemporary cell and developmental biology. The modular format allows students in the Program the required flexibility to receive instruction in the topics and methodologies that are of most relevance to their specific research areas, individual backgrounds and goals.

CELL 502 – Current Topics in Developmental Biology (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 1st Term (5 weeks, Sept. & Oct.)

 

Development from the earliest stages of axis formation to organogenesis. The major goals of CELL 502 are to: a) introduce students to the fundamental concepts of development; b) provide students with an overview of the major stages of development, including early embryogenesis, induction, axis specification and pattern formation; and c) introduce students to a variety of ‘model’ systems that are used in the field of developmental biology. CELL 502 is highly recommended for students who wish to take CELL 510 in the 2nd term.

 

Course Coordinator:
Tim O’Connor (timothy.oconnor@ubc.ca; 604-822-9759)

 

CELL 503 – Current Topics in Cellular Communication (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 2nd Term (6 weeks, Jan. & Feb.)

 

Cellular communication within tissues by direct contact and by modulating and responding to the microenvironment. The major goals of CELL 503 are to: a) introduce students to the scientific fundamentals of cellular communication; b) provide students with a basic understanding of the major modes of communication available inside and outside the cell; and c) provide students with an understanding of communication inputs, signal transduction mechanisms and signalling outputs.

 

Course Coordinator:
Cal Roskelley (roskelly@mail.ubc.ca; 604-822-0779)

 

CELL 504 – Current Topics in the Cytoskeleton and Cell Motility (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 2nd Term (6 weeks, Mar. & Apr.)

 

Structure and function of the cytoskeleton, and its involvement in various forms of cell and intracellular motility. The major goals of CELL 504 are to: a) introduce students to the major components of the cytoskeleton; b) provide an understanding of the ways in which the cytoskeleton can be remodelled; c) provide an overview of the motor proteins which interact with cytoskeletal components and which are important for subcellular trafficking; and d) provide a forum for discussions of the various models of cell motility.

 

Course Coordinator:
Hakima Moukhles (hakima.moukhles@ubc.ca; 604-822-7882)

 

CELL 505 – Current Topics in Intracellular Trafficking (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 2nd Term (6 weeks, Mar. & Apr.)

 

Organization of membranes and organelles within cells and how molecules are targeted to intracellular sites. The major goals of CELL 505 are to: a) introduce students to the concept of intracellular trafficking; b) provide a basic understanding of membrane domains and the role of trafficking as a determinant of cell polarity; and c) provide an overview of various cargoes that are trafficked.

 

Course Coordinators:
Chris Loewen (christopher.loewen@ubc.ca; 604-827-5961)
Robert Nabi (ivan.robert.nabi@ubc.ca; 604-822-7000)

 

CELL 506 – Fluorescence Microscopy (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 2nd Term (6 weeks, Jan. & Feb.)

 

Principles and applications of fluorescence microscopy in biological research. The major goals of CELL 506 are to: a) introduce the importance of fluorescence microscopy for detection, visualization and measurement in biology; b) provide an understanding of the principles of fluorescence, fluorescence microscopy and fluorescence probes; and c) provide an introduction to how different imaging systems that employ fluorescence work, including confocal microscopy, multiphoton microscopy, ratio imaging and FRET, and other advanced techniques in fluorescence microscopy (e.g. deconvolution microscopy, FRAP, FLIP, FLIM, TIRF, spectral imaging).

 

Course Coordinator:
Kurt Haas (kurt.haas@ubc.ca; 604-822-9770)

 

CELL 507 – Special Techniques and Protocols in Cell & Developmental Biology (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 1st Term (6 weeks, Nov. & Dec.)

 

The major goals of CELL 507 are to: a) introduce the spectrum of model organisms available for the investigation of cell and developmental biological questions; b) provide an understanding of the methodologies employed for the analysis of RNA and proteins from the single molecule to the whole genome, including high content and high throughput screenings; and c) provide an introduction on strategies used to investigate gene function.

 

Course Coordinator:
Michael Underhill (tunderhi@brc.ubc.ca; 604-822-5833)

 

CELL 508 – Molecular Genetic Analysis (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 2nd Term (7 weeks, Mar. & Apr.)

 

Methodologies and resources for the genetic analysis of cellular function. The major goals of CELL 508 are to: a) introduce students to technical advances in genetic analysis; b) provide a basic understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the various approaches used for genetic analyses; and c) provide students with experience in the use of online resources for investigating the functions of genes and proteins within cells and organisms.

 

Course Coordinator:
Susanne Clee (susanne.clee@ubc.ca; 604-827-4271)

 

CELL 509 – Systems Cell Biology (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 2nd Term (6 weeks, Mar. & Apr.)

 

This course provides a survey of modern Systems Biology, its techniques, approaches, and goals. The course emphasizes how systems biology interfaces with, and is revolutionizing, cell biology. Students are exposed to the diverse types of research that are being carried out under the umbrella term Systems Biology and learn to see the underlying philosophical mind-set that underlies this diversity. The goal of the course is to expose the students to this cutting edge field and make it easier for them to incorporate elements of systems biology into their own work.

 

Course Coordinator:
Guy Tanentzapf (tanentz@mail.ubc.ca; 604-827-4334)

 

CELL 510 – Molecular Embryology (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 1st Term (6 weeks, Nov. & Dec.)

 

Examination of the molecular interactions that underlie the later stages of embryological development. The major goals of CELL 510 are to: a) introduce students to molecular concepts in development, such as the transcriptional networks important for axial pattern formation, cell fate and differentiation; b) provide students with a basic understanding of the intrinsic and extrinsic molecular mechanisms important for the development of complex structures such as the limb, eye and wing; and c) allow students to apply innovative technologies such as bioinformatics to developmental processes. It is highly recommended that students who wish to take CELL 510 should also take CELL 502 in the first term.

 

Course Coordinators:
Tim O’Connor (timothy.oconnor@ubc.ca; 604-822-9759)
Doug Allan (doug.allan@ubc.ca; 604-827-5960)

 

 

CELL 511 – Cellular and Molecular Mechanisms of Human Disease (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 2nd Term (6 weeks, Jan. & Feb.) NOT OFFERED IN 2016/17.

 

The use of multiple research modalities to determine the mechanisms underlying human diseases. The major goals of CELL 511 are to: a) introduce students to the diversity of human pathobiology and provide them with a sound understanding of the common threads that run through multiple classes of human diseases; b) provide students with an appreciation of the need to integrate multiple disciplines in modern life sciences research in order to understand the molecular mechanisms of human diseases; and c) provide students with an understanding of the strengths and weakness of the multiple approaches that are used to dissect the mechanisms of human disease.

 

Course Coordinators:
Jim Johnson (james.d.johnson@ubc.ca; 604-822-7187)
Tim Kieffer (tim.kieffer@ubc.ca; 604-822-2156)

 

CELL 512 – Gene and Cell Based Therapies for Disease (1.5 credits). Winter Session, 2nd Term (6 weeks, Mar. & Apr.) NOT OFFERED IN 2016/17.

 

The development of gene and cell based therapies and their translation into clinical use. The major goals of CELL 512 are to: a) introduce students to the rationale for gene and cell based therapies; b) provide a current understanding of the available viral and non-viral based gene delivery tools; c) provide a current understanding of cell based approaches to treat disease; d) introduce the students to key past and current gene and cell based clinical trials; and e) outline the knowledge translation pathway from research to product development.

 

Course Coordinators:
Jim Johnson (james.d.johnson@ubc.ca; 604-822-7187)
Tim Kieffer (tim.kieffer@ubc.ca; 604-822-2156)