Cell Biology for Postgraduates








Prof. Dr. Adrian B. Hehl and Dr. Chandra Ramakrishnan (please contact chandra.ramakrishnan@uzh.ch for further information and enrolment).



Hybrid lectures on campus (exact location to be announced) and possibility to participate over Zoom


Course schedule:

Sessions are held every three weeks on Thursday afternoons, from 2-4 pm online. The schedule for HS21 is: 30th September, 14th October, 4th November, 25th November, 16th December 2021


Credit points:

2 ECTS are awarded per semester. One absence per semester is allowed; for any other absences a medical certificate is required. Credit points are awarded at the end of the semester.


Course description:

The seminar is aimed at revising and deepening the understanding of key concepts in cell biology, thereby providing PhD candidates with a solid preparation in view of their dissertation and final examination. The seminar is taught in English to a small class of max. 15 participants. One credit point is assigned for active participation while the other for completion of an assignment such as moderation of a session.


PhD candidates with a veterinary background and/or based at one of the institutes of the Vetsuisse faculty will be given priority for enrolment.


Learning objectives:

By the end of this course, participants will have:

a) practiced discussing key topics in cell and molecular biology as part of a scientific discourse such as the one employed during a graduate thesis defense

b) identified key open questions that will feed future research efforts in the field of cell biology


Course material and preparation

The reference text for our seminar is “The Cell -A Molecular Approach, Geoffrey M. Cooper & Robert E. Hausman, 8th Edition” (ISBN-13: 978-1605358635); editions until the 6th will be accepted. In HS21, we will be focussing on cell structure and function. We will integrate a recent paper corresponding to the textbook chapter. Participants are required to read the assigned material and to be ready to present the key points and discuss them in depth during the seminar.


Each session features the discussion of a chapter from our reference text. Chapters and corresponding papers will be assigned prior to the beginning of the course. Participants are responsible for presenting the key points of the chapter and paper depending on the number of participants on their own or in groups of two. Although participants are assigned a chapter and a paper, they are then free to manage their session as they best see fit.


Course participants are required to register to OLAT which will be the communication and exchange platform this course.


Organization of a single 2-hour session:

5 minutes: administrative issues

45 minutes: moderation and presentation of the first part of the chapter by Participant 1

10  minutes: break

45 minutes: moderation and presentation of the second part of the chapter by Participant 1 or 2

15 minutes: questions, discussion, outlook