ISB students can choose from a broad array of courses when designing their curriculum. Select the course names to learn more about their content.
This course will introduce students to the theory and practice of modeling biological systems from the molecular to the population level with an emphasis on intracellular processes. Topics covered include kinetic and equilibrium descriptions of biological processes, systematic approaches to model building and parameter estimation, analysis of biochemical circuits modeled as differential equations, modeling the effects of noise using stochastic methods, modeling spatial effects, and modeling at higher levels of abstraction or scale using logical or agent-based approaches. A range of biological models and applications will be considered including gene regulatory networks, cell signaling, cell cycle regulation, and pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics (PK/PD). Weekly lab sessions will provide students hands-on experience with methods and models presented in class. Course requirements include regular class participation, weekly homework assignments, a take-home exam, and a final project.
A laboratory course providing the student an opportunity to carry out a laboratory project under the direction of a member of the Program prior to admission to candidacy for the Ph.D.
This course will introduce the students to genomic data and basic analytical principles pertaining them. The students will learn about high-throughput sequencing methods and applications, genomic variation, transcriptomics and epigenomic data. At the end of the course, the students will be able to analyze efficiently these type of datasets using existing algorithms or algorithms they will develop.
The course will introduce students to a variety of computational tools for solving common problems in biological research. Students will be taught the Python programming language through hands on exercises and assignments. Students will acquire knowledge and programming skills that will increase their productivity as researchers.
The overall purpose of this course is to introduce students to basic probability and one and two sample procedures (point and interval estimation and hypothesis testing) for the Normal and Binomial distributions. Basic one and two sample nonparametric tests are also presented. This broad goal includes use of statistical software to analyze data sets and answer research questions; recognition of situations when these procedures are and are not appropriate; and intuitive understanding of the rationale used in creating the statistical procedures presented.
Students are required to perform three distinct five-week laboratory rotations in the summer/fall term of the first year. These rotations provide students with an opportunity to perform experimental research in three different scientific areas, while experiencing diverse laboratory environments and practices. They also facilitate selection of the dissertation laboratory and advisor. Students select the laboratory rotations based on their research interests and in consultation with their academic advisor.
This course will introduce students to the use of vertebrate and invertebrate model organisms as systems biology research tools. The use of several models is covered, including: mouse, zebrafish, C. elegans, echinoderms, and Drosophila. Emphasis will be placed on the strengths that specialized techniques of each organism provide to the biomedical research community.
After advancement to candidacy for the Ph.D. degree, students enroll in this course to pursue original experimental laboratory research, the results of which will provide the substance of their doctoral dissertation. A minimum of 40 credits of this course are required for the Ph.D. degree in the School of Medicine.
The course covers the fundamental aspects of biological imaging and the associated practical implementation of imaging approaches to address distinct biological questions. A theoretical background describing current imaging techniques and modalities will be followed by specific examples that employ imaging techniques in a range of research areas. Students will be presented with a comprehensive background for each topic, followed by a description of the practical applications of image acquisition and data analysis. For each section time is allocated to discuss data handling and analysis pertinent to the biological questions being addressed.
Students will critically examine and present in a summary form new research relevant to modern-day molecular biology. Students may participate in journal clubs hosted by the school of medicine and/or department of biological sciences.
This course will help students prepare to write their comprehensive exam proposals and will address other essential science communication skills, including research papers, oral and poster presentations, pitching ideas to industry, and web-based communication platforms.