Biology for Physicists April - May 2010



Casimir Course on “Biology for Physicists”

April 13 – May 27, 2010

Course content: The aim of the course is to introduce the participants to the basics of cell and molecular biology. Key subjects that will be reviewed include the genetic information, protein structure and function, lipids and cell membranes, signaling pathways, the cell cycle, and the immune system. More advanced topics specific to the individual needs or interests will be addressed as well during discussions.

Books: Alberts B., et al., Essential cell biology, 3rd ed., Garland Science, 2009; Alberts, B. Molecular Biology of the Cell, 5th ed., Reference Edition, 2007.

Lecturers: Aviva Joseph, David Grünwald, and Christophe Danelon (Delft University of Technology).

Dates and venues: The course consists of 10 sessions including an introductory and a final session, in principle twice weekly (see separate schedule) on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons from 15h to 17h30, starting on April 13, at the TU Delft.

Audience: The course is mainly intended for the Ph.D. students and postdocs associated to the Casimir Research School. Motivated master students are welcome as well.

Organization: We intend to teach this course in a way that will facilitate active learning. Every participant will have to read two book chapters assigned the week before. Each session, two groups of 2 to 3 students will review the information using an approach that should promote interactivity (not the common powerpoint presentation one-way lecture). In order to profit from the subjects presented and to contribute to the class dynamics, we expect everyone to do the reading beforehand. The instructors will catalyze discussion and provide additional information. More details on the organization, the choice of the covered topics and the outline of the presentations will be given during the introductory course. 5 ECTS credits will be awarded only to those participants who attend the course regularly and actively.

Registration: If you intend to participate, please register by sending an email to Christophe Danelon ( before April 9, 2010.


Tue. 13 April, 15h-17h: Introductory course

Tue. 27 April, 15h-17h30: Groups 1 & 2

Thu. 29 April, 15h-17h30: Groups 3 & 4

Tue. 4 May, 15h-17h30: Groups 5 & 6

Thu. 6 May, 15h-17h30: Groups 7 & 8

Tue. 11 May, 15h-17h30: Groups 1 & 2

Tue. 18 May, 15h-17h30: Groups 3 & 4

Thu. 20 May, 15h-17h30: Groups 5 & 6

Tue. 25 May, 15h-17h30: Groups 7 & 8

Thu. 27 May, 15h-17h: Final course