Teacher program: Seminar Series

Whitehead Institute’s 2012-2013 Seminar Series for High School Teachers: Neuroscience Now: The Quest for Breakthroughs in the Brain

According to the World Health Organization, nearly 7 million people will die from neurological disorders this year. This high mortality, coupled with an associated global economic and health care burden in the billions of dollars annually, spotlight the urgent need for improved understanding of the brain and the disease processes that affect it.

Through the combination of technological advances and novel approaches to neuroscience research, scientists are increasingly better equipped to answer fundamental questions about how the brain works—and why, all too often, it doesn’t.

Whitehead Institute’s 2012-2013 Lecture Series for High School Teachers, Neuroscience Now: The Quest for Breakthroughs in the Brain, explored the many ways in which today’s brightest scientific minds are unraveling the mysteries of some of our most vexing neurological and neurobehavioral disorders.

Kick-off session: Monday, October 1, 2012

Using zebrafish as a tool for studying brain development disorder

Hazel Sive, Member, Whitehead Institute
[presentation not available]

Monday, November 5, 2012

Using stem cell technology to make neurons for both disease modeling and screening

Clifford J. Woolf, Director, F.M. Kirby Center and Program in Neurobiology,
Children’s Hospital Boston
Professor of Neurology and Neurobiology, Harvard Medical School
[presentation not available]

Monday, December 3, 2012

Yeast models of neurodegenerative diseases

Susan Lindquist, Member, Whitehead Institute
[presentation pdf, 15MB]

Monday, January 7, 2013

New insights into genetic causes of autism and other childhood brain disorders

Christopher Walsh, Chief, Division of Genetics, Children's Hospital Boston
Bullard Professor of Neurology, Harvard Medical School
[presentation pdf, 4.1MB]

Monday, February 4, 2013

Loosening the Gordian knot: Unraveling Alzheimer Disease biology and Finding Therapeutic Targets using Genetic Approaches

Dr. Lindsay Farrer, Chief of Biomedical Genetics and Professor of Medicine, Neurology, Ophthalmology, Genetics & Genomics, Epidemiology, and Biostatistics at Boston University Schools of Medicine and Public Health
[presentation pdf, 6.4MB]

Monday, March 4, 2013

Neural Imaging

P. Ellen Grant, MD, Founding Director, Fetal-Neonatal Neuroimaging & Developmental Science Center (FNNDSC), Boston Children's Hospital
Associate Professor in Radiology, Harvard Medical School
[presentation not available]

Monday, April 1, 2013

Optogenetics and new molecular tools for manipulating the living brain

Dr. Feng Zhang, Investigator, McGovern Institute and Assistant Professor, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, MIT
[presentation not available]

Monday, MAy 6, 2013

Ischemic Stroke

W. Taylor Kimberly, Associate Director, Mass General Hospital Neuroscience ICU
Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School
[presentation pdf, 1.1MB]

Monday, June 3, 2013


Andrew W. Lo, Charles E. and Susan T. Harris Professor, Professor of Finance, and the Director of the Laboratory for Financial Engineering at the MIT Sloan School of Management
[presentation pdf, 1.7MB]

Slide of neurons

These neurons arose from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) that were made from the cells of a patient with Parkinson's diease. A green-stained protein highlights the neurons' structures.  DNA in the neuron's nuclei is stained blue.

Image: Maya Mitalipova/Whitehead Institute

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