The first part deals with the body conceived as a functional unit that is much more than the sum of its parts. The levels selected from a large number of organisational levels are those that form the subject of a Cell Biology and Histology course. As such, only the microscopic levels, with special attention to the subcellular, cellular and tissue levels, are further dealt with. Also discussed are the structural aspects of homeostatic control mechanisms.
(the students will be referred to the Animal Biology course for an introduction to biomolecules)
The 'cell' is conceived, on the one hand, as the most essential organisational level composed of an accumulation of macromolecules underlying the basic functions of life, and on the other hand, as the basic unit in the formation of multicellular tissues and organisms. In this respect, the following topics will be elaborated on:
- a concise historical survey of cytology, linked with the development and refinement of experimental imaging techniques
- the structure of cell membranes
- the structure and function of cytosol and cell organelles: cytoskeleton, nucleus, endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus, lysosomes, peroxisomes and mitochondria
- the structure and function of the cell nucleus and chromosomes
- dynamic cellular processes: endocytosis and phagocytosis, membrane recycling, cell communication
(the reader is referred to the Animal Biology course for cell cycle, cell division and gametogenesis)
In the 'tissues' part, the main cell biological aspects of 'typical' cells in various tissues are related to their function, and the significance of extracellular matrix components is elaborated on. Discussed are:
- covering and glandular epithelia, incl. the skin and derivative structures
- connective tissues and supporting tissues
- muscle tissue
- nerve tissue
The practical exercises ...
- aim at familiarising students with the optimal use of a good light microscope
- focus on learning to recognise cells and tissues in microscopic preparations and on acquiring a spatial insight into microscopic structures
- are intended to study microscopic preparations of various tissues
- will try to create minimal skills for the interpretation of images obtained using different microscopic techniques (electron microscopy; fluorescence microscopy; live cell imaging;...).