|It's Paris, It's Mecca, It's a Dream. Former students wax
poetic when they reflect on their MBL days.
These intensive educational programs, one to four weeks
long, provide experience in specialized research techniques. Lecture
and laboratory courses in topics of current interest are also available.
2014 Special Topics Courses
Jagesh Shah, and Justin Taraska
A comprehensive and intensive course in light microscopy for
researchers in biology, medicine, and material sciences. This course
provides an in-depth examination of the theory of image formation and
application of video methods for exploring subtle interactions between
light and the specimen.
Brains, Minds and Machines
and Tomaso Poggio
The problem of intelligence – how the brain produces intelligent behavior and how we may be able to replicate intelligence in machines – is arguably the greatest problem in science and technology. To solve it we will need to understand how human intelligence emerges from computation in neural circuits, with rigor sufficient to reproduce similar intelligent behavior in machines. Success in this endeavor ultimately will enable us to understand ourselves better, to produce smarter machines, and perhaps even to make ourselves smarter. Today’s AI technologies, such as Watson and Siri, are impressive, but their domain specificity and reliance on vast numbers of labeled examples are obvious limitations; few view this as brain-like or human intelligence. The synergistic combination of cognitive science, neurobiology, engineering, mathematics, and computer science holds the promise to build much more robust and sophisticated algorithms implemented in intelligent machines. The goal of this course is to help produce a community of leaders that is equally knowledgeable in neuroscience, cognitive science, and computer science.
Biology of the Inner Ear: Experimental
and Analytical Approaches
Summer 2015 Directors: Paul Fuchs and Stefan Heller
Assistant Director: Jennifer Jones Rowsell
The Biology of the Inner Ear (BIE) course has adapted the intensive and focused approach that typifies MBL courses to provide students with the capacity to address important problems in auditory and vestibular research. Students with backgrounds in biological and physical/computational sciences and scientists new to investigations of the inner ear are particularly encouraged to apply.
Computational Image Analysis in Cellular and Developmental Biology
Directors:Gaudenz Danuser, Khuloud Jaqaman, Steve Altschuler, and Lani Wu
This 10 day course offers theory and hands-on training in the design and implementation of image processing software required for the quantitative and mechanistic analysis of light microscopy data in cellular and developmental biology. An additional subject in the course will be software design, addressing both the implementation of optimized algorithms and sharable code, including programming in teams. This course is targets students with fairly advanced knowledge of programming.
Frontiers in Stem Cells &
Directors: Jennifer Morgan
The Stem Cells and Regeneration Course (formerly known as FrHESC) is a
dynamic, evolving laboratory and lecture course that includes the
complete array of biological and medical perspectives from fundamental
basic biology of "stemness" and mechanisms of regeneration through
evaluation of pluripotent stem cells for therapeutic benefit.
Fundamental Issues in Vision Research
Ann Stepp, and Theodore Wensel
lecture and laboratory course, experimentally based and problem
oriented, intended for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in
the early stages of vision research or planning to enter the
field. Students are presented with a comprehensive overview of
current research areas and approaches that will help to broaden their
understanding of this area.
Networks for Development
and David McClay; Assistant Director: Isabelle Peter
A 10-day advanced course on gene regulatory systems as they pertain to development. The course is comprised of morning lectures followed by discussions; afternoon computation practicals, research clinics, systems assembly projects; and wet lab demonstrations of gene regulatory perturbation analysis in vivo. Faculty are leading experts in analysis of development at a systems level.
Immunohistochemistry & Microscopy
Directors: Eduardo Rosa-Molinar
Charles W. Frevert
Course History: The Histochemical Society (http://histochemicalsociety.org/) developed and began teaching an immunocytochemistry and immunohistochemistry (IHC) course in 2008. Initially offered as a one-day workshop at the 2008 and 2009 Experimental Biology meetings in San Diego and New Orleans, respectively, the first Histochemical Society (HCS) hands-on immunohistochemistry and microscopy (IHCM) course was held at the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) in Woods Hole, MA in 2010. In 2013, IHCM became a Special Topics Course offered and managed by the MBL Education Department. HCS members continue as directors and faculty of the course, providing a high level of IHC knowledge and microscopy expertise in order to assist participants at all levels of the course. Using the intensive and focused approach that distinguishes MBL courses, IHCM provides participants technical and methodological capabilities and knowledge to solve important fundamental problems in biology and biomedical sciences.
Course Goal(s): The goal of the IHCM course is to provide participants in-depth theory of and extensive hands-on experience with IHC techniques as well as theory and hands-on experience with a broad range of microscopic imaging techniques. The course emphasizes hands-on experience, troubleshooting, and the exchange of ideas between and among faculty and participants. The IHCM course will enable participants to independently carry out IHC and imaging in their laboratories and to critically evaluate and troubleshoot problems using IHC and microscopy techniques. The interplay of theory, hands-on experience, and discussion is central to this course that serves advanced undergraduates, graduate students, laboratory technicians, postdoctoral students, and new and established faculty/research clinicians. Students from groups underrepresented in science may apply for financial support for travel-related expenses and course registration (http://bit.ly/IHCM2014). HCS Travel Awards are available for young histochemists in training, working either toward a masters/doctoral degree or are in post-doctoral fellowships, to attend the course (http://histochemicalsociety.org/Awards/Students---Post-Docs.aspx).
Methods in Computational Neuroscience
Animals interact with a complex world, encountering a wide variety of
challenges: they must gather data about the environment, discover
useful structures in these data, store and recall information about
past events, plan and guide actions, learn the consequences of these
actions, etc. These are, in part, computational problems that are
solved by networks of neurons, from roughly 100 cells in a small worm
to 100 billion in humans. Careful study of the natural context for
these tasks leads to new mathematical formulations of the problems that
brains are solving, and these theoretical approaches in turn suggest
new experiments to characterize neurons and networks. This interplay
between theory and experiment is the central theme of this course.
Molecular Biology of Aging
and Daniel Promislow
A three-week lecture and laboratory course featuring the newest and most exciting ideas in aging research, with emphasis on molecular approaches. A distinguished faculty will interact with approximately 20 students via lecture, discussion, hands-on experiments, and analysis of data. Lecture topics encompass yeast, invertebrate and mammalian model systems; human genetics; mitochondrial function and oxidative stress; DNA mutations and repair; telomeres and cellular senescence; and evolutionary considerations. Laboratory modules will expose students to modern experimental techniques and concepts important in the field, along with an introduction to essential statistical and computational methods of data analysis.
Molecular Mycology: Current Approaches
to Fungal Pathogenesis
Alspaugh and Deborah A. Hogan
An intensive course
designed to train
advanced graduate students, post-docs, and independent investigators in
different molecular methods used to study human fungal pathogens, and
models at the forefront of research on the mechanisms that underlie
diseases and their treatment.
The goal of
the workshop is to teach research scientists how to design, supervise,
and critically evaluate stereological studies of the nervous
system. Stereology is a methodology that provides meaningful
quantitative descriptions of the geometry of three-dimensional
structures from measurements that are made on two-dimensional images
sampled from a structure of interest.
& Imaging in the
and Hari Shroff
This course is designed for research scientists, postdoctoral trainees, and advanced graduate students in animal, plant, medical, and material sciences. Non-biologists seeking a comprehensive introduction to light microscopy and digital imaging will benefit greatly from the course. Both theoretical and practical fundamentals are stressed. An understanding of the basic principles of optics and/or some previous experience with light microscopes and imaging is highly desirable.
Seminar in the History of
Topic: History of Zoo and Aquarium Conservation
The MBL-ASU History of Biology Seminar is an intensive week with annually varying topics designed for a group of no more than 25 advanced graduate students, postdoctoral associates, younger scholars, and established researchers in biology, history, philosophy, and the social sciences.
Strategies and Techniques for Analyzing Microbial Population Structures
Directors: Mitchell L. Sogin and David B. Mark Welch
The rapidly expanding flow of information from next generation DNA sequencing platforms has fueled healthy debate about best practices for data analysis while at the same time building a user demand for tools that can address important questions in microbial ecology. The STAMPS course consists of lectures by experts in the analysis of molecular datasets and hands-on tutorials in use of computational packages by their designers, and emphasizes discussion and the exchange of ideas between faculty and students. The course serves graduate students, postdoctoral students and established faculty from around the world.
Summer Program in Neuroscience,
Ethics, & Survival (SPINES)
The Summer Program in Neuroscience, Ethics & Survival (SPINES)
provides a rich experience in neuroscience. The core of the program is
an intensive one-month experience, in which students are exposed to
neuroscience laboratory techniques, contemporary neuroscience research,
ethics and survival skills (including grant writing, teaching, public
speaking, and others). Lecture, lab, workshop and discussion formats
are used. In a second optional month, students may apply to work full
time in a research laboratory at the MBL, especially those funded by
the National Institute of Mental Health. The program is targeted to
groups underrepresented in neuroscience to increase the probability of
professional success, although applications from any qualified students
interested in the SPINES curriculum are welcome. This is a full
fellowship program; all costs of attending the course, including
travel, housing, and meals at MBL are covered by the National Institute
of Mental Health and MBL.
Workshop on Molecular Evolution
Directors: David Hillis and Mitchell
The Workshop on Molecular Evolution at Woods Hole presents a series of
lectures, discussions, and bioinformatic exercises that span
contemporary topics in molecular evolution. Since its inception in
1988, the workshop has encouraged the exchange of ideas between leading
theoreticians, software developers and workshop participants. The
workshop serves graduate students, postdoctoral students and
established faculty from around the world.
Development and Genetics
Directors: Corinne Houart and Michael Granato
An intensive two-week course for
advanced graduate students,
postdoctoral fellows and independent investigators that will focus on
development and genetics of zebrafish. Participants will learn
fundamental and state of the art techniques tailored to a broad range
zebrafish research through hands-on experience. Designed for
from all areas of biology, laboratory exercises are designed to convey
principles and concepts.
The MBL offers advanced, graduate-level courses in embryology,
physiology, neurobiology, microbiology, reproduction, and parasitology
for six to eight weeks each summer.