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Theoretical Biophysics


Admission Requirements

A basic understanding of statistical physics is very useful. Material from Classical Mechanics B is also helpful but not absolutely necessary.


You will learn how quantitative physics approaches can help to interpret biophysics experiments which in turn leads to a better understanding of biological processes. Examples will include: DNA target search, nucleosome dynamics and kinetic proofreading in transcription.

Course objectives

Students learn how one can treat a complex system quantitatively and how to ask the right questions about a system that came about through evolution. The course should be useful for both more experimentally or more theoretically inclinded students.


Physics Schedule

Mode of instruction

  • lecture – homework – student presentations of research papers

Assessment method

Each student needs to give one presentation on a research paper. This gives 8/10th of the final grade, the rest comes from homework.


It contains homeworks plus solutions and study material (excerpts from the book and research papers)
To have access to Blackboard you need a ULCN-account.Blackboard UL

Reading list

H. Schiessel: “Biophysics for Beginners: Journey through the Cell Nucleus” Pan Stanford Publishing,


Lecturer: Prof.dr. H. Schiessel (Helmut)