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Imaging in Neurosciences and Cardiovascular Research


Admission requirements

  • Thorough basic knowledge of principles of neuroscience is essential; successful completion of the second year course “Introduction in the Neuroscience”, or a similar course is mandatory.

  • Bear, Connors and Paradiso; Neuroscience, Exploring the Brain.; 3rd Ed. 2006; Ch 2-7 and 9-14.

  • Successful completion of How to write a research proposal is strongly recommended.


Period: June 2 – June 27, 2014


After an introduction on the history of medical imaging and the “heart-brain axis”, the first week of the course will be dedicated to the introduction of neuroimaging techniques of increasing complexity (X-ray, CT, SPECT, PET, MRI). Each technique will be presented in a practical context, i.e. in terms of what questions (research, clinical) can be answered with the technique in question. Students will then read selected papers, collate information gained in small groups and prepare a review presentation.
In the second week advanced imaging topics will be treated: multiphoton imaging, physics and clinical applications of cardiovascular mri, imaging in metabolic syndrome and in Alzheimer’s disease. Subsequently, the second week will be centered around an in depth case study of the imaging techniques applied in a disease model, e.g. migraine, Alzheimer’s disease or cardiovascular disease. During this week, workgroups will be supplied with research hypotheses and asked to formulate an imaging experiment to resolve the hypotheses. Afternoons are devoted to the student self-study assignments.
During the third week, lectures on neurovascular X-ray-angiography, optical imaging, and MRI methods in brain research (perfusion, diffusion, tractography) will be given.
The last week schedules cutting edge lectures on functional brain research (EEG/ERP, fMRI). Finally, students will present the result of their assigned topics in oral presentations and as a paper.


This course will work on:

Academic competences:
Creative thinking, rapid acquisition of new knowledge, information gathering

Research competences:
Formulating a relevant and feasible research strategy, data analysis, writing a paper

Professional competences:
Collaboration with peers, commitment, motivation and drive, digesting other peoples opinion, peer review

Communicative competences:
Oral and written presentations; writing a paper

Course objectives

The student:

  • gains a thorough understanding of the various neuroimaging techniques used in fundamental research and in clinical practice;

  • is able to design an imaging experiment to resolve hypotheses related to cognition or pathology;

  • is able to interpret experimental data in one of the neuroimaging techniques and to write a short paper based on these data.

Mode of instruction

Lectures, group work, self study assignments, practical.

Assessment method

Oral presentation, research proposal/question, active participation, written report