Teachers: Ermanno Gherardi

Course content

Students enrolling in this Course will have covered Molecular Biology, Biochemistry and Genetcs at BA level and such background is expected.

To provide students with a comprehensive view of immunity, including the evolutionary basis of self – non self discrimination, the main types of immunity (innate and adaptive) and of the molecular and cellular processes responsible for resistance to infection and immune surveillance.

The Immunology Course addresses the biological processes responsible for resistance against disease. The Course offers an evolutionary and molecular perspective of the study of immunity and consists of several lecture blocks: Foundations, provides a short historic account of the discovery and impact of artificial immunity and the experimental foundations of modern immunology. Evolution of Immunity addresses the innate and adaptive immunity across the evolutionary ladder and introduces the cells and molecules responsible for immunity in higher vertebrates. Proteins and Genes is devoted to the study of the molecular basis of immunity, namely: the properties of antigens and the pathways of antigen presentation, the proteins involved in antigen recognition and the complex genetics that underlies the diversity of the adaptive immune system. Cells of immunity covers the cellular basis of immunity: the development of B and T cells, the immune network and tolerance. Effector Responses reviews the processes responsible for immunity to viruses and bacterial and effector mechanisms: cell-, complement-, and cytokine-mediated. Blood Groups, Transplants and Vaccines address the impact of Immunology in these major areas of medical science. Immunity and Disease covers the causes and mechanisms of autoimmunity, hypersensitivities and immune deficiencies, genetic and acquired.