This course will use a systems neuroscience approach to understanding the relationship between the structure and function of the human brain. Course material will span the level of cellular neurophysiology of neurons and synaptic signaling to circuits and brain regions involved in sensory processes, motor function, emotion, attention, and learning and memory. Neuroanatomy will be emphasized throughout the course. Deviation from normative structure and function will be considered through clinical case studies and translational research. Although the focus of this course will be the human brain, research from animal models, particularly non-human primates and rodents, will be included in the investigation of neuronal mechanisms.
Prior introductory biology coursework is encouraged; supplemental materials will be available for students who have not had a prior introduction to biophysical properties of cell membranes and cell signaling processes.
- Identify neuroanatomical landmarks of the human brain in schematic illustrations, magnetic resonance images, and micrographs of sections of post-mortem tissue
- Analyze clinical cases and evaluate which neural regions are likely to be involved in symptoms and injury
- Describe basic neurophysiological properties and be able to explain: how the properties of the neuronal membrane relate to changes in potential and salutatory conduction of action potentials; the evidence for quantal transmission of chemical signals at the synapse; and the effects of various neurotoxins on receptor-binding kinetics or neurotransmission
- Apply knowledge of receptive fields, neuronal ‘tuning,’ neuronal codes, and topographic maps to compare and contrast the structural and functional properties of the somatosensory, motor, and sensory systems
- Think critically about scientific investigations by participating in an online discussion of scientific papers, giving careful consideration to potential confounds, alternative explanations, significance of findings, and unanswered questions for future inquiry
There is a required textbook for BIOL325 that can be purchased through FAES or on your own. The name of the book is: Principles of Neural Science, 5th ed. (2013) The fee for the book is $150.00. If you would like to purchase the book through FAES, please register for the section (BIOL 325-002) that includes the book. Upon receipt of payment and fulfillment of your book order, your book can be picked up at the FAES Bookstore in Building 10 on the main NIH campus.
If you are unable to pick up the book at the FAES bookstore and would like the book mailed to you, please contact FAES at (301) 496-7976 or email@example.com. There is a $10 charge for mailing the book.