HomeUndergraduate ProgramsUpper Division CoursesN154: Molecular Neurobiology

N154: Molecular Neurobiology

N154: Molecular Neurobiology is taught in the Spring Quarter by Professor Katumi Sumikawa.

sumikawa (from Frank-laferlas-imac)
Dr. Katumi Sumikawa

N154 is an upper division class aimed at Biological Sciences and Neurobiology Majors.  It requires N110 as a prerequisite course, and covers molecules involved in neuronal communication, the foundation for brain function, with particular emphasis on molecules involved in learning and memory.  Specific goals of the course are to understand: (i) the control of synaptic transmission, (ii) the regulation of receptor expression, (iii) signaling pathways activated by neurotransmitters, (iv) the cellular mechanism underlying learning and memory.

No textbook is required, and class size is limited to a maximum of 30 students.  Grades are determined by three exams.

Sample Syllabus:

Lecture Topics

Molecules involved in synaptic transmission

Synthesis, storage, and removal of neurotransmitters Neurotransmitter transporters and brain disorders
Synaptic transmission and drugs of abuse
Molecular markers for identification of specific neuron types Release of neurotransmitters


Exam 1

Molecules involved in neuronal signaling
Ligand-gated neurotransmitter receptors Regulation of receptor gene expression

G protein-coupled neurotransmitter receptors G proteins and effector proteins
Second messengers


Exam 2

Mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity

Protein kinases
Protein phosphorylation in neuronal signaling
Long-term potentiation, a cellular model of learning and memory Long-term depression


Exam 3 – Final Exam