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Electrical Interactions in the Heart: From Disease to Treatment


Admission requirements

Recommended prior knowledge:
Physiological Basic Concepts and Physiology Advanced Concepts, or equivalent knowledge of physiology obtained through courses elsewhere. Literature: Cardiac electrophysiology: from cell to bedside by Zipes and Jalife (Walaeus library).


Period: This course will not be taught in 2011-2012, but in 2012-2013. The description below is indicative for the course contents but may be updated by May/June 2012.

First week:
Lectures will be given about important subjects related to this course, involving 1) basic cardiac electrophysiology, 2) basics of stem cell biology, 3) basics of gene therapy. At the end of this week the students need to decide what aspects have their particular interest and think about ways to study these aspects.

Second week:
The students, which are operating in duos, will meet the PhD students and visit the labs. Later this week the students will start their experiments and present their ideas in a plenary session.

Third week:
This week will start with in depth-lectures, after which the students will continue with their experiments in the lab. The course will be closed by the students presenting their work. In addition, they will submit their abstracts and/or proposal for future experiments.

This course will particularly work on:

Research competences:
How to design and perform experiments.

Professional competences:
Commitment, motivation and drive, assertiveness and making a mark

Course objectives

To get a good understanding into:

  • the underlying mechanisms of electrical interactions in the heart and how this could contribute to proper cardiac function and cardiac dysfunction.

  • how cell transplantation or cell modification in the damaged heart could affect such electrical interactions in their own typical way.

  • how to design and perform experiments to study electrical interactions in different cell culture systems.

Mode of instruction

Plenary seminars, practical work in lab, self study assignments.

Assessment method

Abstract and/or grant proposal; oral presentation; student behaviour (motivation, independency, oral reporting, participation in discussion).
Of note, the duo that has performed best is invited to present their ideas and data during an interdepartmental meeting, attended by principal investigators, physicians, PhD student and undergradute students.