Course catalogue doctoral education - VT22

  • Application can be done between 2021-10-15 and 2021-11-15
Application closed
Title Brain Circuits
Course number 2624
Programme Neuroscience
Language English
Credits 1.5
Date 2021-09-13 -- 2021-09-17
Responsible KI department Department of Neuroscience
Specific entry requirements Knowledge of neuron function and brain anatomy is required.
Purpose of the course The purpose of the course is to provide doctoral students in the field of neuroscience with an overview of current state-of-the art approaches, technologies and concepts used for understanding of the brain's circuits and functions in animal models. There is a very strong emphasis on research in mice. All invited speakers have made seminal contributions to how we currently study and understand the brain, and there will be ample opportunities for the students to interact with the speakers, and discuss aspects relevant to their own work.
Intended learning outcomes By the end of the course the student shall be able to:
- explain the structure and function of the main brain circuits,
- describe the principles for excitatory and inhibitory networks, including receptors and neurotransmitters, as well as the action of different chemical neuromodulators,
- describe principles, use and readout of optogenetics and recording technologies,
- describe principles and methods to define the structure (neuroanatomy) of brain circuits,
- explain how dysfunctions of networks can manifest as neuropsychiatric disorders,
- describe animal behavior tests probing specific networks and network functions.
Contents of the course The course will cover the organization and function of main circuits in the brain, including the interaction and participation of different cell types, the interplay between excitation and inhibition, and how circuit output results in behavior. Different techniques for recording, labeling and manipulation of neuronal circuits in animal models will be discussed, including electrophysiology, molecular targeting, optogenetics and viral tracing. The connection between deficient circuit functions and neuropsychiatric disorders will be included, as well as animal behavior tests probing specific circuits and circuit (dys)functions. Specific emphasis will be put into describing the technologies currently used in the neuroscience field.
Teaching and learning activities Lectures by invited experts and group exercises.
Compulsory elements The seminar presentations are obligatory, and so are all lectures. Any absence has to be compensated for in accordance with the instructions of the course director.
Examination The student should in discussions and a seminar presentation demonstrate the ability to critically evaluate original research papers on the topics covered and be able to show that the intended learning outcomes for the course are reached.
Literature and other teaching material Original research and review papers provided by the course organizers.
Number of students 12 - 24
Selection of students We welcome highly motivated applicants from all areas of neuroscience. Selection will be based on 1) the relevance of the course syllabus for the applicant's doctoral project according to the written motivation in the application, 2) the extent of experience in neuroscience research as stated in the written motivation, 3) start date of doctoral studies (priority given to earlier start date).
More information Lectures will be given by international and KI neuroscientists who have made significant contributions to the study of brain and behaviour using advanced methods to define the organization and function of circuits. Lectures will cover the development and application of novel technologies (imaging activity, optogenetics, machine learning) with a focus on advances using transgenic rodents. We have a strong emphasis on engaging young neuroscientists and creating a network for future neuroscience leaders. The course will be given at Karolinska Institutet Campus Solna and/or on Zoom. Time: 9.00-17.00 (Monday to Friday). Updates regarding the course, including confirmed speakers, lecture halls will be posted on
Additional course leader The course is co-organised by Marie Carlén and Dinos Meletis, with Pierre Le Merre, Karolinska Institutet, as additional course leader.
Latest course evaluation Course evaluation report
Course responsible Marie Carlen
Department of Neuroscience
Contact person Dinos Meletis
Institutionen för neurovetenskap