Login for PhD students at UCPH      Login for others
Evolutionary processes affecting health - Medical Geobiology
Provider: Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences

Activity no.: 3184-24-00-00There are 10 available seats 
Enrollment deadline: 15/07/2024
Date and time19.08.2024, at: 09:00 - 23.08.2024, at: 16:00
Regular seats12
Course fee10,680.00 kr.
LecturersKarina Krarup Svenninggaard Sand
ECTS credits4.00
Contact personLine Juul Larsen    E-mail address: line.juul.larsen@sund.ku.dk
Enrolment Handling/Course OrganiserPhD administration     E-mail address: phdkursus@sund.ku.dk

Aim and content
This course is free of charge for PhD students at Danish universities (except Copenhagen Business School), and for PhD Students from NorDoc member faculties. All other participants must pay the course fee.

Anyone can apply for the course, but if you are not a PhD student at a Danish university, you will be placed on the waiting list until enrollment deadline. This also applies to PhD students from NorDoc member faculties. After the enrollment deadline, available seats will be allocated to applicants on the waiting list.

Learning objectives
A student who has met the objectives of the course will be able to:

1. Place their own PhD project into a broader perspective by applying concepts or methods from related disciplines

2. Understand ecological and evolutionary parameters from a health perspective.

3. Compare and utilize tools to model eco-evolutionary or system dynamics.

4. Integrate environmental parameters into evolutionary processes.

5. Explain processes and mechanisms important for cancer cell and biofilm development.

Growing scientific expertise offers us exceptional insights. The separation of knowledge into distinct disciplines of medicine, biology or geology makes it difficult to gain a full view on processes that affect our health and future. Challenges like antibiotic resistance, pollution, or cancer share common processes by which traits are selected and propagated. Through an evolutionary lens, we can map the processes common to changes on our planet and in our bodies. Many of such processes have both occurred in the past, take place currently, and will mediate our future.

This course on medical geobiology explores the evolutionary interplay between life forms, environments, and selection pressures and investigates how physical and chemical environments, stressors, and evolutionary processes dynamically affect health. By integrating interdisciplinary principles this course offers insights into emerging health issues induced by geobiological interactions, such as environmental pollution and antibiotic resistance propagation inside our bodies and in the environment. The interdisciplinary principles include medical microbiology, evolutionary biology, biophysics, tumor biology, geobiology, interfacial geochemistry, and evolutionary game theory. The course provides a platform for advancing knowledge in transdisciplinary approaches to understanding health and disease and we seek to encourage a creative scientific process and joint efforts between the involved parties.

The course consists of lectures, student presentations, and literature discussions. The students will be assigned case studies in groups and will develop the case during the course. The cases will be focused on biofilm, pollution, and disease. The students will also develop their own “student course portfolios” where the students daily consider their own research topics set in a context of the daily topics.

The course welcomes individuals with a wide range of scientific backgrounds, including natural and medical sciences and caters to PhD students, as well as professionals seeking continuing education opportunities. Concepts from the fields of biogeochemistry, evolutionary biology, physics, tumor biology, microbiology, geobiology, behavioral ecology, and interfacial geochemistry are key components in the course. The interdisciplinary components will be introduced and continuously integrated in the scientific thinking allowing course participants to gain a comprehensive platform for advancing knowledge in medical geobiology and transdisciplinary approaches.

Relevance to graduate programmes
The course is relevant to PhD students from the following graduate programmes at the Graduate School of Health and Medical Sciences, UCPH:

All graduate programmes


The course content is disseminated through lectures, group work, discussions, presentations, exercises, literature presentation and panel discussion. The students will take on a case study which will be developed and expanded through the knowledge gained from research-based lectures, literature, exercises and panel discussions. At the end of the course the students will hand in their case studies and present the work to the class. The students are expected to bring a presentation and a poster on their PhD topic set into context of evolutionary processes and/or health. To pass the course, students should be present for 80% of the time, contribute to literature presentations and/or panel discussions and hand in a case study portfolio.

Course director
Karina Krarup Sand, Associate Professor, GLOBE, KU, email: kks@sund.ku.dk

Liselotte Jauffred @NBI (KU)
Nicole Posth @IGN(KU)
Emma Hammarlund @TiDE (Lund University)

Anuraag Bukkuri, PhD student, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center, Fl, USA
Deniz Koca, Assistant. Professor, Centre for Environmental and Climate Science, Lund University
Emma Hammarlund, Associate Professor, @TiDE Lund University
Eva Sophia Myers, Senior Consultant, SDU
Hector Herranz Associate Professor, SUND, University of Copenhagen
Karina Sand, Associate Professor, SUND, University of Copenhagen
Liselotte Jauffred, Associate Professor, NBI. University of Copenhagen
Nicole Posth, Associate Professor, IGN. University of Copenhagen
Oana Ciofu, Professor, SUND, University of Copenhagen
Tim Tolker-Nielsen, Professor, SUND. University of Copenhagen
Veronica Marie Sinotte, Post. Doc. SUND, University of Copenhagen

19 - 23 August 2024 (week 34).

Course location
University of Copenhagen.
At Panum or Globe

Please register before 15 July 2024.

Expected frequency
Once a year.

Seats to PhD students from other Danish universities will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis and according to the applicable rules.
Applications from other participants will be considered after the last day of enrolment.

Note: All applicants are asked to submit invoice details in case of no-show, late cancellation or obligation to pay the course fee (typically non-PhD students). If you are a PhD student, your participation in the course must be in agreement with your principal supervisor.

Click the search button to search Courses.

Course calendar
See which courses you can attend and when

New courses
Courses are published regularly. High demand courses are announced in spring and autumn.

Learn which courses are announced on fixed dates