Immunobiology Course

CD8 T cell killing its target.Wiedemann A et al. PNAS 2006;103:10985-10990

The immunobiology course starts on monday 25 April 2016. The course book is Parham's The Immune System (4th edition). Flashcards of the book is available here. There are a number of movies available at the Publisher (Garland) science web page that are useful to look into. The overview of which videos are relevant per chapter is given here . Many thanks to Wayne McQuaig from Garland Science for providing this information.


The immune system comprises innate and acquired defense mechanisms against (pathogenic) microorganisms. Immunology has traditionally been a qualitative science describing the cellular and molecular components of the immune system and their functions. In the last twenty years this traditional approach is being replaced by a systems biology approach, where theoretical studies helps to interpret experimental data, to resolve controversies, and --most importantly-- to suggest novel experiments allowing for more conclusive and more quantitative interpretations. This course is planned to give an overview of wet and theoretical immunological research. We aim to:

  • provide insight into the function of the immune system in health and disease
  • give an introduction to the use of mathematical models and bioinformatics in immunological research.


Active participation in the computer assignments required. Please keep a lab-book during the computer exercises (choose a format you are comfortable with, google documents, word, power point). To be able to pass this course you need to submit the lab-book on the day of the exam. If you did all the computer exercises together in a group, then you can submit one labjournal for your group. Please indicate all names.

The final grade of the course is calculated as:

  • the exam (50%)
  • two written assignments on experimental part and computer exercises (15% and 20%, respectively)
  • presentation of the articles and article discussions (15%).

Assignment I is about the experimental part (15%). You are supposed to submit one report per group.

Assignment II will be about an exercise of your choice concerning the mathematical modeling or bioinformatics (20%). You can choose one of the eight computer exercises. You are supposed to submit one report per group. If you are working on your own, you can also submit an individual report.

The first report should be written in English and the second one can be either in dutch or in english. Both reports should contain a contribution statement describing who did what.


The exam is a combination of open questions and multiple choice questions, and Your exam grade should be minimum 5,5 to be able to pass this course.