72570 - Morphological and Cellular Biology Methods

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2018/2019

Course contents

I Modulo: 2 cfu, 16 ore frontali- Franceschini Valeria

The resolving power of instruments for the study of cell morphology and the parameters that determine it. Image formation in the compound light microscope. Different types of light microscopes and their application in cell biology: phase-contrast microscope, differential interference contrast microscope. Transmission electron microscope (TEM). Scanning electron microscope (SEM). Techniques for biological sample preparation for light and electron microscopy.

II Modulo: 3 cfu, 24 ore frontali- Milani Liliana

Microscopes and their use in biology: how to set up an experiment with microscopy. Fluorescence and confocal microscopes, two-photon microscope, FRAP, FRET and FLIM. Features of dyes and markers used in microscopy. Expansion microscope. Atomic force microscope. Protocols for in situ localization of DNA, RNA and proteins. Nuclear morphology in the study of cell type: methods for the analysis of structure/condensation of chromatin using specific fluorescent dyes. Chromosome morphology: methods for the analysis of chromosomes (karyology and chromosome banding). Cell morphology and cell migration: methods for the analysis of the mechanisms that control the shape of cells, tissues and morphogenesis; cell-cell adhesion and cell-matrix adhesion; 3D models of cell morphology; relationships between morphology and cell migration. Example of stem cells and germ line cells: role of cell junctions in primordial germ cell differentiation. Ultrastructure of germ cells. Processing and analysis of bioimages.

Laboratorio: 1 cfu, 15 ore- Milani Liliana

Preparation of gonadal bivalve mollusc tissues for confocal microscopic analysis of germ cell morphology with different degree of differentiation and observations of TEM and SEM samples.


Articles and reviews will be provided to supplement these texts.

Teaching methods

Lessons and Lab exercises

Assessment methods

The assessment will take place through an oral  exame which ensures the acquisition of knowledge and expected skills.

Teaching tools

Video projector, PC

Office hours

See the website of Valeria Franceschini

See the website of Liliana Milani