Electrophysiological studies of ion channel function

Target audience

The full course (consisting of the theoretical/practical first day, the symposium with international speakers and the hands-on workshops) is open for interested PhD students.
Minimally 10 and maximally 25 can be allowed for practical reasons, i.e. offering sufficient exposure to the hands-on sessions of the workshops. In particular, hands-on sessions will be organized with only two students per session, necessitating repetition of the sessions.
Although this creates a significant workload, it is absolutely necessary to create and obtain sufficient learning effect of the hands-on sessions.
The symposium day is open for the students enrolled for the hands-on course and will also be open for a broader public interested in investigations on ion channels.

Topic and theme

Excitability in living organisms and cells has intrigued scientists for decades. At the basis of electrical events in cells are ion channels, i.e. transmembrane proteins forming pores through which charged ions flow. Electrophysiological techniques such as the Nobel prize winning patch clamp technique allowed to measure the function of single proteins in real time. Patch clamp and other electrophysiological techniques have been a gold standard in physiology, pharmacology and pathology laboratories.
In this workshop PhD students and junior postdocs will gain hands on experience in several electrophysiological techniques supplemented with the basic theory. The workshop will be complemented with an international symposium on "Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms of Excitability" in which leaders of the field such as Francisco Bezanilla and David Eisner will inspire junior and senior investigators interested in both neuroscience and cardiophysiology. The symposium is open to all researchers.
In addition to a great scientific and training program, there will be ample opportunities to network during the breaks and poster sessions.
This workshop is organized by the IUAP - P7/10 consortium.

Organizing Committee

  • Local Organizing committee

o Prof. Luc Leybaert UGent -
o Dr. Nan Wang UGent -

  • Organizing committee

o Prof. Karin Sipido KULeuven
o Prof. Luc Leybaert UGent
o Prof. Jan Tytgat KULeuven
o Prof. Vincent Seutin ULg
o Prof. Serge Schiffmann ULB
o Prof. David Gall ULB
o Prof. Jean-Michel Rigo UHasselt
o Prof. Bert Brône UHasselt


  • Introductory course

    o Prof. David Gall http://student.ulb.ac.be/~dgall/mendeley.htm

  • Symposium: confirmed speakers

    o Prof. Fransisco Bezanilla http://nerve.bsd.uchicago.edu/FB/
    o Prof. David Eisner http://www.cardiovascular.manchester.ac.uk/staff/DavidEisner/
    o Dr. Jose Guzman
    o Prof. Luc Leybaert https://biblio.ugent.be/person/801000669155
    o Dr. Dominique Engel
    o Dr. Patricia Bonnavion http://neurophy.ulb.ac.be/people/patricia-bonnavion

  • Workshop: organized on site by the IAP members

Programme and Registration


26th of April 2016: one day symposium in Brussels (University Foundation), open to a wide audience.

25th and 27-29th of April 2016: Hands-on Workshop for selected participants.

   − On the 25/04 a theoretical course on the biophysics of electrophysiology and ion channels as well as a hands-on practical course on lipid bilayer studies of reconstituted channels will be organized in Brussels (ULB).
   − On 27-29/04 participants will take part in 2 practical workshop sessions of 4 hours each devoted to a variety of electrophysiological techniques (patch clamp, two-electrode voltage clamp, and others) organized in the labs of the IAP partners in Belgium.

Registration fee

There is no registration fee for members of the Doctoral School of Life Sciences and Medicine

Evaluation criteria (doctoral training programme)

100% participation