Spring 2020 - BPK 446 D100

Neurological Disorders (3)

Class Number: 2273

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    We 11:30 AM – 12:20 PM
    WMC 3210, Burnaby

    Fr 10:30 AM – 12:20 PM
    SSCC 9000, Burnaby

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Apr 24, 2020
    12:00 PM – 3:00 PM
    SSCK 9500, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    BPK 306. Recommended: BPK 336 and/or BPK 415.



Examines neural and neuromuscular diseases, including Alzheimer's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, multiple sclerosis, stroke, and myasthenia gravis. Emphasizes currently favoured hypotheses, underlying evidence and pathogenic mechanisms.


Week 1: 

  • Introduction to course, video, Discussion of video, anatomy and physiology related to disease
  • Response of CNS cells to injury
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), including genetic studies
  • ALS (continued)
Week 3:
  • Excitatory amino acids and excitotoxicity, calcium and role of Ca2+
  • Axon transport
Week 4:
  • Apoptosis and cell death
  • Trophic factors
Week 5:
  • FIRST MIDTERM EXAM, Alzheimer’s disease
  • Alzheimer’s disease
Week 6:
  • Alzheimer’s disease and fronto-temporal dementia
  • Fronto-temporal dementia
Week 7:
  • Cerebrovascular disease, ESSAY TOPICS DUE
Week 8:
  • Prion disease
  • SECOND MIDTERM EXAM and multiple sclerosis
Week 9:
  • Inflammation in the nervous system
  • Multiple sclerosis
Week 10:
  • Peripheral nerve disease and axon transport
  • Huntington’s disease: ESSAY DUE
Week 11:
  • Autism
  • Myesthenia gravis and the neuromuscular junction
Week 12: 
  • Memory and temporal lobe dysfunction
  • Myotonia and muscle disease
Week 13: 
  • Muscle Disease
  • Catch up and Review


A course in neurobiology emphasizing current concepts of the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying diseases of the nervous system and muscle and how the study of disease has contributed to our understanding of cell biology. The aim of the course is not to be comprehensive, but to emphasize new developments and to give an overall view of general mechanisms involved in pathogenesis. The students will practice critical review and interpretation of the literature and develop the skill of succinct scientific writing.


  • Midterm 1 15%
  • Midterm 2 20%
  • Short summary of paper/methods and/ or presentation 10%
  • Essay 20%
  • Final Exam 35%



Readings will be provided. There is no textbook

Department Undergraduate Notes:

It is the responsibility of the student to keep their BPK course outlines if they plan on furthering their education.

Missed Exam:

Students who miss examinations due to exceptional circumstances (such as serious illness or compassionate reasons) are required to obtain a physician's certificate, whereby the physician states that you were unable to write your midterm or final on the set date due to a medical condition beyond your control, or other supporting documents in order to obtain consideration in the course. Such documents must be filed with the Department Chair (via the Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology office) or Registrar within four calendar days of the date on which the examination was to have been written. Exceptional circumstances must be approved by the Undergraduate Program Committee in order for a student to receive consideration. Students must check the examination schedule when making course selections. Students are reminded that final examinations may be scheduled at any time during the examination period and that students should avoid making travel or employment arrangements for this period. In the event of a missed midterm or final examination the instructors reserve the right to give an oral examination of the material. Approximate midterm dates are provided, but may be subject to change.

BPK Grading Policy

For more information on the department's grading policy & guidelines go to:  

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html