3 ECTS credits
90 h study time

Offer 1 with catalog number 4021670FNR for all students in the 2nd semester at a (F) Master - specialised level.

2nd semester
Enrollment based on exam contract
Grading method
Grading (scale from 0 to 20)
Can retake in second session
Taught in
Partnership Agreement
Under interuniversity agreement for degree program
Faculty of Engineering
Electronics and Informatics
External partners
Universiteit Gent
Educational team
Decaan IR (course titular)
Activities and contact hours
30 contact hours Lecture
6 contact hours Seminar, Exercises or Practicals
5 contact hours Independent or External Form of Study
Course Content

Position of the course

In a report of the World Health Organization from 2006, neurological disorders contribute to 6.3% of the global burden of disease. This report estimates that the number of healthy life years lost because of neurological disorders will increase from 92 million in 2005 to 103 million in 2030, approximately a 12% increase mainly due to the aging population. Hence, there is still an important interest in neuroscience research to study the brain under normal and pathological conditions, even though, therapeutic successes have been few. Especially translational aims have been a remarkable engine for driving research investment in the neurosciences. Translational neuroscience is defined as:

1. Experimental non-human and non-clinical (basic science) studies conducted with the specific intent to discover mechanisms, biomarkers, pathogenesis or treatments of nervous system disorders; and

2. Clinical studies that provide a foundation for developing, or that directly test, novel therapeutic strategies for humans with nervous system disorders.

In other words, translational neuroscience will bring basic preclinical knowledge (from the bench) to clinical practice (to the bedside) to expand understanding of brain structure, function and disease, and translate this knowledge into clinical applications and novel therapies of nervous system disorders. Thus, translational neuroscience is the process of using all technological advances to bring novel therapies with measurable outcomes to patients with neurological diseases. In this course, emphasis will be on translational neuroimaging, where multiple imaging techniques are used to bridge the gap between preclinical research and clinic practice. These imaging methods need to fulfil certain criteria such as being non-invasive (MRI), or at least minimal invasive (PET), and providing quantitative information to simplify the process of translating preclinical findings into the clinic.


· The importance of small animal imaging

· Multimodal neuroimaging

· Setting up a small animal experiment

· Animal models

· Opto-genetics

· Chemo-genetics

· Computing for the characterization of neurodegenerative disorders

· Examples of translational neuroscience experiments at our university

Additional info


· Animal models

· Neuroimaging

· Preclinical studies

· Clinical trials

Initial competences

· Physical principled of different imaging techniques, including SPECT, PET, CT, MRI and EEG.

Learning Outcomes

Finan competences

· Critical evaluation of the advantages and disadvantages of the different neuroimaging techniques

· Capability to setup a preclinical imaging study

· Capability to understand the principles of opto-genetics 

· Capability to understand the principles of chemo-genetics

· Critical evaluation of different animal models available for preclinical research

· Critical evaluation of the difficulties of image quantification in translational neuroscience


The final grade is composed based on the following categories:
Other Exam determines 100% of the final mark.

Within the Other Exam category, the following assignments need to be completed:

  • Exam with a relative weight of 1 which comprises 100% of the final mark.

Additional info regarding evaluation


Allowed unsatisfactory mark
The supplementary Teaching and Examination Regulations of your faculty stipulate whether an allowed unsatisfactory mark for this programme unit is permitted.

Academic context

This offer is part of the following study plans:
Master of Biomedical Engineering: Standaard traject (only offered in Dutch)
Master of Biomedical Engineering: Startplan
Master of Biomedical Engineering: Profile Radiation Physics
Master of Biomedical Engineering: Profile Biomechanics and Biomaterials
Master of Biomedical Engineering: Profile Sensors and Medical Devices
Master of Biomedical Engineering: Profile Neuro-Engineering
Master of Biomedical Engineering: Standaard traject (NIEUW)
Master of Biomedical Engineering: Profile Artificial intelligence and Digital Health