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EMBO Practical Course

Marine Animal Models in Evolution & Development: Single-cell approaches and genome editing in marine neurobiology

02 – 15 July 2017 | Fiskebäckskil, Sweden

  • Registration Deadline
  • 30 April 2017
  • Abstract Submission Deadline
  • 30 April 2017
  • Chosen Participants Will Be Notified By
  • 30 May 2017
  • Payment Deadline
  • 15 June 2017

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About the Practical Course

Practical Course illustration

This EMBO Practical Course will give an introduction into genome editing, single neuron characterisation, modern imaging techniques, and various behavioural assays to study the neurobiology of marine larvae from a comparative perspective. The course will have an integrative agenda, where we will combine the study of freshly collected zooplankton samples with training in genome engineering, single cell sequencing and other state-of-the-art experimental approaches in three established laboratory marine animal models. The scientific focus will be on the molecular and functional characterisation of the neuron type complement in marine larvae.

During evening lectures and discussions we will cover in depth the theory of comparative neurobiology and cell type evolution. During the practical sessions we will provide strong training in live tissue labelling, tissue dissociation, single cell library preparation, immunostaining, whole-larvae light-sheet imaging, microinjection, and gene editing approaches such as Crispr-Cas9 to study marine larval neurobiology. We will also give hands-on experience in behavioural and pharmacological experiments with planktonic larvae using high-speed video-microscopy and subsequent image analysis. We will have access to a large diversity of samples at the Marine Station including larvae of annelids, phoronids, cephalochordates, cnidarians, and echinoderms. Freshly collected larvae and microinjected larvae of the model organisms will be assayed for phototaxis, vertical migration and settlement behaviour, and will be stained with neuron-specific markers.







  • Registration Deadline
  • 30 April 2017
  • Abstract Submission Deadline
  • 30 April 2017
  • Chosen Participants Will Be Notified By
  • 30 May 2017
  • Payment Deadline
  • 15 June 2017



Registration includes:

  • Accommodation
  • Meals
  • Course Material
  • Vessel trip
  • Paleontological excursion (transportation by bus, accommodation, meals, entry fee)


Selected participants will receive an email with details for the fee payment.

Selection criteria

Selection of the participants is based on their CV, poster abstract and a motivation letter describing the applicant's research interests and the impact that this course will have on their careers.

The most stringent criteria for the selection will be excellence with which the participants have performed in their careers so far. Pre- and early-stage post doctoral fellows can be accepted.

Abstract guidelines

The abstract length must be within 250 words.

Poster specifications

Posters must be A0 portrait format.

Travel grants

A limited number of travel grants are available for participants. Applicants do not need to apply separately for travel grants for this event but should indicate on the registration form if they wish to be considered for a travel grant. Selection of awardees is handled directly by the organizer who will notify all eligible participants. More information is available at EMBO Travel Grants' page.



Marzia Sidri




Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences in Kristineberg,




The marine station provides simple but neat accommodation to course participants, usually in double rooms, many of them with views onto the fjord.


The station is situated in the small town of Fiskebäckskil, 120 km from Gothenburg International airport and can be easily reached with public transport. The transfer time is about 2.5 hrs.

More information on the accommodation at the station will be provided to the participants later on.

About the Area

Kristineberg marine biological station, a collaboration between the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and Gothenberg University, is one of the foremost marine biological stations in Europe. The station was founded in 1877, as one of the oldest marine stations for education and research in the world. It has a long tradition of welcoming visiting researchers. It is situated on Gullmar fjord (an EU BioMare reference area) that has a rich invertebrate and vertebrate fauna, with some 1750 species having been recorded.

The station has easy access to both open sea and coastal environments, and a rich variety of different benthic habitats. It is fully equipped for both collection and study of marine invertebrates and plankton. Virtually all living phyla can be collected within the fjord, making it an ideal place to study animal diversity.

Laboratories are outfitted with standard molecular equipment, and the station has excellent microscopy facilities, including a JEOL type J SM T220A electron microscope and a new Leica TCS SP5 Confocal.

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