nl en

Bioinformatics: Computational biology of complex disease and ageing


Admission requirements

  • Successful completion of How To Write A Research Proposal is strongly recommended.

  • Basic statistical and genetic knowledge.


Period: June 8- 26, 2015

In the first two weeks the student will acquire hands on experience with bioinformatics tools typically used in the different disciplines of genetic/genomic research and pass through all phases necessary to accomplishing a research proposal such as hypotheses formation, study designs and power issues. The course will focus on the genomics of complex diseases such as osteoarthritis, ageing and longevity, and cardiovascular diseases. In the third week the students will assemble a research proposal applying the gained knowledge of the genomics approach to complex diseases.
The following items will be addressed:

  • Which research questions are of importance in different disease fields?

  • What common designs are applied in genetic and gene expression studies?

  • How and why are large datasets of genetic, gene expression and phenotypic data collected?

  • What do the data types look like?

  • How are such datasets managed?

  • Which bioinformatics tools are used for pattern recognition in the data, to match results with existing biological information, to form new hypotheses?

This course will particularly work on:

Research competences:
Defining a research question, choosing appropriate techniques, integrate different biomedical disciplines, recording, organizing and analyzing data.

Professional competences:
Commitment, motivation and drive, reflecting on personal actions, digesting other people’s opinions in work discussions.

Course objectives

  • To acquire “hands on” experience in bio-informatic tools and apply them to large genetic, gene expression and phenotypic data sets.

  • To apply new results with existing biological information and thereby form new hypotheses.

  • To gain knowledge about the genomics of complex diseases in order to design new research questions and hypotheses.

  • To determine the appropriate study design and power to establish and defend a “genomic” research proposal.

Mode of instruction

Plenary sessions, practicals, self study assignments, work groups.

Assessment method

Written report on the practicals; student behavior (motivation, independency, oral reporting, participation in discussion); research proposal; oral presentation of assignment.