Neurobiology I

Academic year
Subject Area
Biomedical Sciences
Language of Instruction
Mode of Delivery
ECTS Credits
2nd Cycle Studies - Mestrado

Recommended Prerequisites

Not applicable.

Teaching Methods

The methodology includes: Theoretical classes:
basic concepts of anatomy, physiology and functioning of the central and peripheral nervous systems;basis of neurotransmission and action of neurotransmitters/neuromodulators, inter-and intracellular signaling in the nervous system;neurobiology of senses;hormonal action of hypothalamus;role of hippocampus in learning and memory.Theoretical and practical classes:basic notions about preparation/presentation of scientific papers and bibliographic search;oral presentation of scientific papers;preparation of problem solving report;midterm tests;seminar

Learning Outcomes

The course unit of Neurobiology wants to give fundamental and special training about how the central and peripheral nervous system function, serving as a basis for expertise in other disciplines of the specialization in Neurosciences. At the end it is intended that students:
- Identify the basic units of the nervous system and the major components of the cytoskeleton.
- Describe the organization and function of the central and peripheral nervous system.
- Recognize the main metabolic pathways in the brain.
- Describe the processes responsible for neuronal signaling, identifying the electrochemical characteristics of nerve cells and the major neurotransmitters, neuromodulators, neurotrophic and transcription factors in the nervous system as well as the major signal transduction pathways.
- Discuss the mechanisms of sensory processing.
- Describe the neuroendocrine system and the role of the hypothalamus.
- Identify the different types of memory and describe its molecular basis.

Work Placement(s)



Characteristics of the nervous system:
- Cellular components of the nervous system (neurons and glia) and the cytoskeleton
- The central and peripheral nervous system: structure/function relationship
Cerebral energetic metabolism
Electrochemical characteristics of nervous cells:
- Neuronal excitability and ionic fluxes
- Ionic channels and transporters
- Role of myelinization in conductance of nervous impulse
Synaptic transmission:
- Electrical and chemical synapses
- Mechanisms of exocytosis and synaptic proteins
- Axonal transport
Inter-and intracellular signaling:
- Main types of neurotransmitters and neuromodulators, membrane receptors and signaling pathways
- Neurotrophic and transcription factors
Neurobiology of senses:
- Somato-sensorial system
- Vision
- Olfaction
- Audition
- Vestibular system
- Taste
Neuroendocrine system and the hypothalamus
Hippocampus and memory

Head Lecturer(s)

Ana Cristina Carvalho Rego

Assessment Methods

Summary of Seminar: 10.0%
Mini Tests: 10.0%
Oral presentation of scientific papers: 10.0%
Problem solving report: 20.0%
Exam: 50.0%


- Siegel GJ, Albers RW, Brady S, Price DL (2006) “Basic Neurochemistry: Molecular, Cellular and Medical Aspects”, 7th edition, Elsevier Academic Press.
- Purves D, Augustine GJ, Fitzpatrick D, Hall WC, LaMantia A-S, McNamara JO, Williams SM (2008) “Neuroscience”, 4th edition, Sinauer Associates Inc.
- Nadeau SE, Ferguson TS (2004) “Medical Neuroscience”, 1st edition, Saunders – Elsevier.
- Matthews GG (2001) “Neurobiology: Molecules, Cells and Systems”. Blackwell Science, Inc.