GMS 6063 – Cell Biology of Aging

Course Information

Credit hour: 1
Number: GMS 6063
Course format: 5-week module
Office hours: By appointment (email)

Course Director

John P. Aris PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology
Contact information:, 352-273-6868. Office: Rm D2-32A (Dental Science Bldg).


Students must have successfully completed Fundamentals of Biomedical Sciences I (GMS 6001) or obtained permission from the course director.


This course focuses on recent developments pertaining to cellular mechanisms of aging. It highlights advancements in our understanding of the cellular and molecular basis for aging in both experimental organisms and humans. Human diseases of aging will be discussed, especially where underlying cell biological mechanisms have been elucidated. The content of the course is interdisciplinary in nature and graduate students and faculty from other Departments and Colleges are invited to participate.

Topic Area Examples

Cell senescence (e.g., Hayflick limit, classic literature)
Aging-related diseases (e.g., progerias, DNA repair deficiencies)
Lower eukaryote model systems (e.g., S. cerevisiae, C. elegans)
Higher eukaryote model systems (e.g., rat, mouse, primate)
Models (e.g., molecular damage, genome instability, telomere erosion, mitochondrial dysfunction)
Therapeutic approaches for delaying aging (e.g. genetic or pharmacological strategies)


Reading assignments are posted at the course web page in Canvas.

Learning Objectives

  1. Identify cutting edge topics in the current literature of cell biological mechanisms of aging.
  2. Discuss current experimental hypotheses concerning cell biological mechanisms of aging.
  3. Critically examine experimental approaches pertinent to cell biological mechanisms of aging.
  4. Critically evaluate experimental data germane to cell biological mechanisms of aging.


Classes will consist of either a brief introductory lecture followed by discussion of assigned readings or presentations by students of readings chosen in advance by the student and the course director.