Full course description
This course aims to develop a detailed understanding of the cell as the basic unit of life. The basic built up of a cell including cell membrane composition, cytoplasm and organelles will be eluded. Furthermore, methods of visualisation of those will be discussed in detail. The cell can be seen as an organism that can perform a wide range of functions. In eukaryotes, these functions are linked to the different compartments/organelles in the cell: nucleus, mitochondria, chloroplasts, endoplasmatic reticulum, lysosomes, endosomes, etc. Proteins need to move into organelles through translocation and there is a continuous transport between the different organelles (intracellular vesicular transport) and between the cell interior and the extracellular environment (endocytosis and exocytosis). All of these cellular transport mechanisms will be studied in detail. Additionally, the cell contains intracellular structures that regulate shape, strength, and motility, i.e. the cytoskeleton. The cytoskeleton is a highly dynamic structure and the different components of the cytoskeleton (microtubules, F-actin, intermediate filaments) and their assembly and disassembly will be explained. And the cell needs energy from oxidative phosphorylation or photosynthesis to perform these functions. Finally the basic principles of signal transduction will be studied, i.e. how does the cell react to signals from the environment, how are these signals detected and how are these processed into a primary cellular response?
- To present the structure of prokaryote (bacteria) and eukaryote cells (animal, plant, fungal).
- To comprehend the structure/function relationship of the plasma membrane.
- To understand the functions of cell organelles and sub-cellular structures.
- To deepen the knowledge about transport of material in- and out of the cell
- To understand the principles of transport between the different cell organelles and how molecules and proteins are reliably transported to the different organelles.
- To create understanding of cell motility and how the cell controls its shape (cytoskeleton).
- To understand how the cell produces the energy it needs to function.
- To understand communication between the cell interior and exterior of the cell (cell signalling).
“Molecular Biology of the cell” 6th edition (2014). B. Alberts, A. Johnson, J. Lewis, D. Morgan, M. Raff, K. Roberts, P. Walter; Garland Science: Taylor and Francis Group, New York, NY10017, USA (ISBN: 978 0 8153 44643)