Drosophila Neurobiology: Genes, Circuits & Behavior
July 1 - July 21, 2022
Application & Materials Deadline: March 15, 2022

Individuals who applied to the course in 2020 may update their application by sending a one page research progress update to Shannon Silva.


C. Andrew Frank, University of Iowa
Ellie Heckscher, University of Chicago
Tim Mosca, Thomas Jefferson University


COVID-19: All participants planning to attend in-person will be required to provide documentary proof of full vaccination AND first booster (when eligible) with an FDA or EMA approved vaccine. Additional safety measures will be in line with current NY and federal guidelines applicable in summer 2022.


See the roll of honor - who's taken the course in the past 

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Social Media Coordinator: Tyler Sizemore, University of West Virginia

This laboratory/lecture course is intended for researchers at all levels from beginning graduate students through established primary investigators who want to use Drosophila as an experimental system for nervous system investigation. This three-week course is designed to introduce students to a wide variety of topics and techniques, including the latest approaches for studying nervous system development, activity and connectivity, as well as complex behaviors and disease models.

Daily research seminars present comprehensive overviews of specific subfields of nervous system development or function or focus on state-of-the-art techniques and approaches in Drosophila neuroscience. Expert guest lecturers discuss their findings and approaches, and bring along their own assays and techniques for students to learn in the laboratory part of the course.

The hands-on portion of the course is centered on inquiry-based projects, utilizing the different morphological and physiological measurements and behavioral paradigms learned at the course. This includes molecular-genetic analyses, immunocytochemistry, recording of activity using electrophysiology and genetically encoded calcium indicators, optogenetic and thermogenetic control of neural activity, as well as numerous quantitative behavioral measures.

Collectively, the course will provide a comprehensive and practical introduction to modern experimental methods for studying the neural basis of behavior in Drosophila.

2022 Speakers Include:

James Ashley, University of Chicago
Martha Bhattacharya, University of Arizona
Robert Carrillo, University of Chicago
Sarah Certel, University of Montana
Damon Clark, Yale University
Jaeda Coutinho-Budd, University of Vermont
Cagla Eroglu, Duke University Medical Center
Zach Freyberg, University of Pittsburgh
John Inglis, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Vivek Jayaraman, HHMI, Janelia Research Campus
Alex Keene, Florida Atlantic University
Sung Soo Kim, University of California, Santa Barbara
Aurel Lazar, Columbia University
Wei-Chung Lee, Harvard Medical School
Joel Levine, University of Toronto, Canada
Matthieu Louis, University of California, Santa Barbara
Adrian Moore, RIKEN Center for Brain Science
Nara Muraro, Biomedicine Research Institute of Buenos Aires, Argentina
Tania Reis, University of Colorado Medical School
Michael Reiser, HHMI, Janelia Research Campus
Seth Tomchik, Scripps Research Institute
Dan Tracey, Indiana University
Pam Vanderzalm, John Carroll University
Benjamin White, National Institute of Mental Health
Cale Whitworth, Indiana University, Bloomington

The course is supported by funds provided by: National Science Foundation, Helmsley Charitable Trust and Howard Hughes Medical Institute

We would like to acknowledge the following companies that provided invaluable support:
Nikon Instrument, Inc, Scientifica
Equipment: AD Instruments, A-M Systems Inc, Andor Technology, Molecular Devices, Narishige International USA, Photmetrics, Sutter Instrument Company
Donations: Aves, Vector Laboratories

Funding is available for domestic and international students accepted to this course.

Stipends are available to offset tuition costs as follows-

Scientists from developing countries accepted into this course may be eligible for scholarships provided by the International Brain Research Organization.


Cost (including board and lodging): $5,340

No fees are due until you have completed the full application process and are accepted into the course. Students accepted into the course should plan to arrive by early evening on June 30 and plan to depart after lunch on July 21.

Before applying, ensure you have:
  1. Personal statement/essay;
  2. Letter(s) of recommendation;
  3. Curriculum vitae/resume (optional);
  4. Financial aid request (optional).
    More details.

If you are not ready to fully apply but wish to express interest in applying, receive a reminder two weeks prior to the deadline, and tell us about your financial aid requirements, click below: