cod. 1005383

Academic year 2014/15
2° year of course - Second semester
Academic discipline
Istologia (BIO/17)
A scelta dello studente
Type of training activity
Student's choice
28 hours
of face-to-face activities
4 credits
course unit

Learning objectives

The main objectives of the course are the understanding of the molecular bases and the knowledge of the biochemical pathways and gene networks that regulate cell differentiation during male and female gametogeneses and during preimplantation development.



Course unit content

Where does the stem cell pluripotency, in particular that of the embryonic stem cells, originates? Which are the biochemical pathways and genetic networks that regulate and modulate the process of differntiation into different cell lines? How can we experimentally intervene to modify and direct this differentiative potential? These are some of the main questions that will be address during the course. The course will describe our knowledge on the cytological and molecular processes involved during both male and female gametogeneses , preimplantation development and during the differentiation into the earliest cell lines present in the embryo.

Full programme

The course will describe the fundamental aspects of:

- Origin of sexual reproduction and sex determination

- Cell cycle and meiosis

- Cytological and molecular aspects of spermatogenesis

- Cytological and molecular aspects of oogenesis

- Acquisition of the oocyte developmental competence

- Cytological and molecular aspects of fertilisation

- Engineering the ovarian follicle

- Cytological and molecular aspects of preimplantation development

- Micromanipulation of the preimplantation embryo

- Origin of stemness

- Sources of stem cells

- Markers of embryonic stem cells

- Pathways and stability of embryonic stem cells

- Genome stability, plasticity and reprogramming

- Differentiation and clinical use of embryonic stem cells


The students will be given articles and the slides used by the teachers.

Teaching methods

Before each new lesson, the teacher will first summarise then check whether the previous topics have been well understood through an interactive discussion with the students.

Assessment methods and criteria

At the end of the course, the students must be capable of discussing critically and with the appropriate language on the molecular bases of mammalian reproduction, preimplantation development and on the biology of the embryonic stem cells.

Other information

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