Introduction to Biophysics II:
A major goal of the course is to provide Biophysics majors (see also the Biophysics major webpage) with a follow-up course to Biophysics II that covers more topics in-depth in biophysics. Apart from this, the course will be of interest to any Duke advanced undergraduate who would like to learn about how the conceptual and quantitative approach of physics can further our understanding of biology, and how in turn biology can pose interesting and deep problems for physics.
One goal of biophysics is a quantitative understanding of biological systems through the application of physical principles. Biophysics encompasses a very broad variety of research. This course will emphasize four topics in more depth rather than attempting an overview of all of the biophysics. These topics will be: introduction to physical systems biology, and to cell mechanics. In the end, will explore general principles of non-equilibrium statistical physics applied to cells and tissues (“active matter”). We will also discuss some modern biophysical technologies, such as micro-mechanical manipulation techniques and super-resolution imaging techniques. Students will have the chance to present a cutting-edge biophysics research publication. We will also offer the possibility of a small research project involving evaluating unpublished new data from my lab