Glial cells in health and diseases

For over a century, the main focus of neuroscience research has been on neurons. It is however, becoming ever more clear that brain functions such as conceptual reasoning, memory, and processing speed depend on glial cells (microglia, astrocytes and oligodendrocytes).

The lack of understanding of the role of glia in normal brain development, function and disease is mainly due to lack of tools and methods to accurately study these cells. In recent years, neuroscience has seen a methodological revolution. The function of glia cells in neuronal circuit development, and neurodegenerative disease has become evident. The study of glial biology and the understanding on how glial cells impact on circuit function are key to understanding how the brain works and what goes wrong in brain disease. Advanced training of a new generation of neuroscientists with strong focus on glial function is crucial to make these studies a success in the coming decades.

Course director & co-directors

  • Ragnhildur Thora Karadottir (Cambridge University, UK)
  • Cagla Eroglu (Duke University, USA)
  • Staci Bilbo (Duke University, USA)
  • Jean-Christophe Delpech (Bordeaux University, France)

Amit Agarwal – Heidelberg University, Germany
Liam BarryCarroll – IMN, University of Bordeaux, France
Arne Battefeld – IMN, University of Bordeaux, France
Felipe Bodaleo – Heidelberg University, Germany
Sarah Bou Sader Nehme – IMN, University of Bordeaux, France
Sara Carraedo Vicente – IMN, University of Bordeaux, France
Omar De Faria – Stem Cell Institute, University of Cambridge, UK
Mohit Dubey – Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience, The Netherlands
Jiaxing Li – Oregon Health & Science University, US
Charlotte Madore-Delpech – INRAE, University of Bordeaux, France
Giampaolo Milior – College de France, France
Wiebke Möbius – Max Planck Institute for Multidisciplinary Sciences, Germany
Torben Ruhwedel – Max Planck Institute for Multidisciplinary Sciences, Germany
Kristina Sakers Hays – Duke University Medical Center, US
Caroline Smith – Duke University, US
Francesco Ulloa Severino – Duke University, US

This is a theoretical and practical training course on glial cells and their communication with neuronal circuits. It will provide an overview of the current concepts and knowledge of glial cell biology in central and peripheral nervous system development in several species, including zebrafish, mice, and humans, and their link to diseases.

It will combine lectures and hands-on projects on glial development including methods in cellular neuroscience (e.g. live and fixed tissue imaging), genetic modifications, -omics (e.g., scRNA seq, proteomics and bioinformatics), electrophysiology, optogenetic and chemogenetic manipulation of glial cells and methods to study behaviour.


Keynote Speakers

Amit Agarwal – Heidelberg University, Germany
Paola Arlotta – Harvard University, US
David Belin – University of Cambridge, UK
Bart J. L. Eggen – University Medical Center Groningen, The Netherlands
Sonia Garel – Institut de Biologie de l’Ecole Normale Superieure (IBENS), Paris, France
Soyon Hong – UCL, London, UK
Maarten Kole – Utrecht University, The Netherlands
Kelly Monk – The Vollum Institute, OHSU, US
Stéphane Oliet – Neurocentre Magendie, France
Thomas Papouin – Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, US
Nathalie Rouach – College de France, France
David Rowitch – University of Cambridge, UK
Mikael Simons – Technical University Munich, Germany