In the fall semester of 2003, I will be teaching Human Anatomy and Physiology I (BIO312) lectures and laboratories. During the spring semester of 2004, I will be teaching Human Anatomy and Physiology II (BIO313) and also Neurophysiology (BIO465). At present, it is uncertain when the Brain Basics: Introductory Neuroscience (BIO/PSY107) course will be offered next.
Student access to online materials for these courses will be through an online teaching tool that is being promoted by the UW System. This software tool is called Desire2Learn. You will need to be registered for a course before you will have access to the course website.
Bio 107 'Brain Basics' is a three-credit lecture course with no laboratory component. It is cross-listed in the Psychology department and is team-taught. The goal of the course is to introduce students to college-level science using current issues of societal importance that have to do with the function of the brain. Faculty for this course include a neurophysiologist (Dr. Brad Seebach), a clinical child psychologist with a specialty in pediatric neuropsychology (Dr. Beth Seebach), and a cognitive psychologist (Dr. Bart VanVoorhis). The course is a General Education Program offering. Textbooks for the course include: (1) The Brain Explained, by Daniel Drubach; (2) How To Think About Weird Things, 3rd edition, by Schick & Vaughn; and (3) Conversations With Neil's Brain, by Calvin & Ojemann.
Bio 312 Human Anatomy and Physiology I is a four-credit lecture course with laboratory, and is the first in the two-part sequence in Human Anatomy and Physiology taught in the biology curriculum at UW-La Crosse. This course will be offered in combination with a section taught by Dr. Glenn Brice. Textbook: Fundamentals of Anatomy & Physiology, 5th edition, by Martini.
Bio 313 Human Anatomy and Physiology II is a four-credit lecture course with laboratory, and is the second in the two-part sequence in Human Anatomy and Physiology taught in the biology curriculum at UW-La Crosse. This course will be offered in combination with a section taught by Dr. Glenn Brice. Textbook: Fundamentals of Anatomy & Physiology, 5th edition, by Martini.
Bio 465 Neurophysiology is a four-credit lecture course with laboratory, taught using inquiry-based methods. Students help to select subject matter for the course at the beginning of the semester. Working in small groups in the laboratory, students design, perform, and analyze results of experiments using a variety of neurophysiology, cell culture, and modeling techniques. Textbooks: (1) Neuroscience, 2nd edition, by Purves et al.; and (2) Neurons In Action, by Moore and Stuart. The development of this course has been supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation (CCLI A&I), matched by development funds from UW-La Crosse.
Teaching methods vary considerably from one instructor to the next. In my classes you will be asked to play an active role in determining what you learn. We will solve problems in class, applying knowledge you have gained from your background reading (yep, you will need to use that textbook!). You will be given sparse lecture outlines (with figures), and will need to fill in the important information you see & hear. The outlines aren't sparse because I can't write them for you - they are sparse because people learn better when they go through this process of selecting the important information and making necessary correlations themselves. I will be available to help you out when you need or want some extra help.
I am a developmental neurophysiologist/neuroscientist, and joined the Dept. of Biology at UW-La Crosse in 1998. My central research interest is the early development of functional 'circuits' within the brain and spinal cord. Information gleaned from developmental neuroscience research is useful in correcting emerging problems as well as in understanding repair of the nervous system following spinal cord injury or following treatment or surgical removal of cancers affecting the nervous system. Techniques in use in my laboratory include electrophysiology and cell culture techniques.
Active research projects involve neurophysiology, neuroanatomy and cell culture techniques. Undergraduate students with time, talent, interest and motivation are welcome to participate in research! Come speak with me if you feel this is an area of research in which you might be interested.
This image (in the inset) shows a group of motor neurons from lumbar spinal cord of neonatal rat. These motor neurons are part of a group of neurons projecting to the medial gastrocnemius muscle of the lower hindlimb. They were stained using an immuno-labeling technique. Note the differences in size and shape of the labelled cell somata, as well as the dendritic processes that can be seen protruding from many of them. Motor neurons grow in size during prenatal and early postnatal development, and extend dendritic processes to receive synaptic contacts from a variety of other neurons. These growth processes and the eventual stabilization of an adult pattern of connections are governed in part by chemical messengers such as neurotrophins, and may be governed indirectly by successful use of each motor neuron in a muscle reflex circuit. The bar in the lower right-hand corner of the picture is 100 micrometers in length.
Ongoing projects include (1) the characterization of glutamate receptors in developing spinal circuits, using neurophysiological techniques, and (2) the characterization of neuronal control of locomotor-like activity in developing mammalian spinal cord. The latter project is proceeding with the help of undergraduate and graduate students in La Crosse and also in partnership with researchers at the University of Wisconsin Medical School Department of Physiology. In the past two years I have also had several students working on mammalian cell culture projects.
Ziskind-Conhaim, L., Seebach, B.S., and Gao, B.-X. (1993) Changes in serotonin-induced potentials during spinal cord development. J. Neurophysiol. 69:1338-1349.
Seebach, B.S., Intrator, N., Lieberman, P., and Cooper, L.N (1994) A model of prenatal acquisition of speech parameters. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 91:7473-7476. [This work was also summarized in Science News 146:111 (1994).]
Seebach, B.S., and Ziskind-Conhaim, L. (1994) Formation of transient inappropriate sensorimotor synapses in developing rat spinal cords. J. Neurosci. 14:4520-4528.
Seebach, B.S., and Mendell, L.M. (1996) Maturation in properties of motoneurons and segmental input in the neonatal rat. J. Neurophysiol. 76:3875-3885.
Seebach, B.S., Arvanov, V.L., and Mendell, L.M. (1999) Effects of BDNF and NT-3 on development of Ia/motoneuron functional connectivity in neonatal rats. J. Neurophysiol. 81: 2398-2405.
Arvanov, V.L., Seebach, B.S., and Mendell, L.M. (2000) NT-3 evokes an LTP- like facilitation of AMPA/kainate receptor-mediated synaptic transmission in the neonatal rat spinal cord. J. Neurophysiol. 84:752-758.
Hinckley, C., Seebach, B.S., and Ziskind-Conhaim, L. (2003) The role of GABAergic and glycinergic inhibition in coordinating bilateral rhythms in the mouse spinal cord. (submitted to J. Neurophysiol.)
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