Cell Communication and Intracellular Signaling

Postgraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content

The course will give an odyssey of major signaling events in the vertebrate cell, starting at the cell surface and ending up in the nucleus. The course aims at giving the student an overview of cellular interactions with the cellular microenvironment and the signaling events resulting from these interactions. Moreover, it will be discussed how cells respond to physiological cues such as hormones and neuronal signals.

The course will be in the form of lectures, given by researchers active in the field they are teaching. To follow up and consolidate the material taught, each lecture will be accompanied by a review article that students will read and discuss in connection to the lecture.

key words from the course: cadherins, integrins, proteoglycans, neuronal signaling, endocrine signaling, adapter proteins, receptor kinases, PI3 kinase, G-protein coupled receptors, cAMP, mitochondrial communication, steroid hormone receptors, intracellular transport, signaling events during development.

Learning Outcomes

After completion of the course the student will be able to:


  • Recognize and discuss the main types of cell communication, including the signal molecules (ligands/transmitters) integral to these main types, and understand the importance of cell signaling in biology and to be able apply this knowledge in future laboratory work.
  • Know and be able to discuss the major groups of intracellular-and membrane-bound receptors, be able to give examples of such receptors.
  • Understand and discuss central cellular signal pathways in eukaryotic cells.


  • Demonstrate the connection between cellular signal pathways and medical phenomena, using examples.


  • Read and discuss advanced scientific articles, which assumes knowledge about cell signaling events, and recapitulate and explain its content to an audience.

Semester of Instruction


Please note that the course will start early in january. Remember til register early for attendance and examination.

Required Previous Knowledge
Biology, molecular biology or equivalent on bachelor level, preferably completed with a degree.
Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap
Teaching and learning methods

The course runs over a period of 4-5 weeks, and will consist of 6-8 hours of mandatory lectures per week.

Note that the lectures start the first week of January. Therefore the course has an early admission process, early registration for attendance and examination. If you are an extrernal student, please make contact if you need help with registration.

Compulsory Assignments and Attendance
Mandatory lectures.
Forms of Assessment
4 hour written digital exam.
Grading Scale
Course Evaluation
Written evaluation using electronic/digital evaluation tool.
Examination Support Material
Simple, bilingual dictionary, that must be reviewable, meaning that one of the languages must be English, or a Scandinavian language