Cell Biology Courses

For the current courses and descriptions please follow the link to Yale University Degree-Granting Departments and Programs.

502 a/b, Molecules to System

James Jamieson, Peter Takizawa, Thomas Lentz, Fred Gorelick, and staff

This full-year course is designed to provide medical students with a current and comprehensive review of biologic structure and function at the cellular, tissue, and organ system levels. Areas covered in the first semester include replication and transcription of the genome; regulation of the cell cycle and mitosis; protein biosynthesis and membrane targeting; cell motility and the cytoskeleton; signal transduction; nerve and muscle function. The second semester of the course covers cell and tissue organization of organ systems including respiratory, renal, gastrointestinal, endocrine, and reproductive systems. Clinical correlation sessions, which illustrate the contributions of cell biology to specific medical problems, are interspersed in the lecture schedule. Histophysiology laboratories provide practical experience with an understanding of exploring cell and tissue structure. This course is offered only to M.D. and M.D./Ph.D. students. This course runs from September to mid-May and is equivalent to three graduate credits.

Fred Gorelick, James Jamieson, and staff

This course emphasizes the connections between diseases and basic science using a lecture and seminar format. It is designed for students who are committed to a career in medical research, those who are considering such a career, or students who wish to explore scientific topics in depth. The first half of the course is organized in four- to five-week blocks that topically parallel CBIO 502a/b. Examples of blocks from past years include “Diseases of protein folding” and “Diseases of ion channels.” Each topic is introduced with a lecture given by the faculty. The lecture is followed by sessions in which students review relevant manuscripts under the supervision of a faculty mentor. The second half of the course focuses on the relationship of basic science to disease processes while emphasizing translational and clinical research. In addition, sessions are devoted to academic careers and cover subjects such as obtaining an academic position, promotions, and grant writing. The course is open to M.D. and M.D./Ph.D. students who are taking or have taken CBIO 502a/b. Student evaluations are based on attendance, participation in group discussions, formal presentations, and a written review of an NIH proposal. This course runs from September to mid-May and is equivalent to three graduate credits. M 4–5:30


Sandra Wolin, Thomas Melia, Thomas Pollard, Craig Crews, and faculty

A comprehensive introduction to the molecular and mechanistic aspects of cell biology for graduate students in all programs. Emphasizes fundamental issues of cellular organization, regulation, biogenesis, and function at the molecular level. MW 1:45–3


Sandra Wolin, Thomas Melia, Thomas Pollard, and faculty

A graduate-level seminar course in modern cell biology. The class is devoted to the reading and critical evaluation of classical and current papers. The topics are coordinated with the CBIO 602a lecture schedule. Thus, concurrent or previous enrollment in CBIO 602a is required. Th 9–11


Carl Hashimoto, Daniel Colón-Ramos, and faculty

Introduction to the organization and function of cells within complex multicellular systems as encountered in the human body. Covers major tissues and organs as well as the cardiovascular, immune, and nervous systems, with special emphasis on the molecular and cellular bases of developmental processes and human diseases. Lectures supplemented by electronic-based tutorials on the histology of tissues and organs. T 9:30–10:30, Th 9:30–11


Derek Toomre, Karin Reinisch, and faculty

This seminar course, which meets once weekly, covers advanced topics in cell biology. Each topic is spread over two or three sessions, which start with an introductory overview and are followed by a discussion of key papers led by an expert in the field. Special emphasis is given to application of state-of-the-art imaging techniques to topical areas covering a wide range of contemporary cell biology. T 4–6


701b, Illuminating Cellular Function

Derek Toomre and faculty

Introduction to the principles and practical methods of live cell imaging. Covers principles of fluorescent microscopy (including genetically encoded probes and physiological indicators), image formation, image detection, and image analysis. Includes hands-on demonstrations of state-of-the-art instrumentation, such as video-rate confocal and multi-photon microscopes

CBIO 900a and 901b/GENE 900a and 901b/MCDB 900a and 901b, First-Year Introduction to Research

Carl Hashimoto, Charles Radding, Frank Slack, and faculty

Lab rotations, grant writing, and ethics for Molecular Cell Biology, Genetics, and Development track students.