BSRT Graduate School


Science Communication - Advanced Scientific Drawing



Take a look at benchmarks in Science like Cell- and Nature- Press and realize how much work is dedicated into the visual aspects of high quality publication. In this 2-hour practical course, we will explore and discuss the world of scientific drawing. Visualization of your scientific ideas, biological processes, workflows and data is today a central aspect in scientific communication. May it be your next paper, review, your thesis or your next grant application, all will benefit from thoughtful and aesthetic graphics that facilitate your ideas and work.


We will discuss the basics of scientific drawing and:

  • Compare different graphic software for the creation of individual artwork including CorelDraw, InkScape, PhotoShop and cloud-based solutions such as Biorender
  • Discuss at the example of good and bad artwork which artistic decisions place a scientific message into focus
  • Each participant will use his/her PhD project idea to create an own scientific drawing of high quality that will be presented, discussed and improved over the course


The course is planned to be held in person. If the number of participants is too low, it will be held online.



Materials - Macromolecular Chemistry


After a short repititon of basic mechanisms in chemistry and intra- and intermolecular interactions, the methods of macromolecular chemistry: synthesis, characterization and processing will be introduced. Modern materials, new methods and their application in the biomedical field and following prerequisites for the materials are discussed. Hands on macromolecular synthesis: a polymer will be synthesized and characterized.


Course Materials and Techniques: A handout for all participants is available


For questions and registration please contact Michael Schroeter (, Cc


Materials - Polymer Chemistry of Biomaterials



Polymer based biomaterials, actively moving polymers and multifuctional polymers for biomedical applications will be introduced. Biodegradable polymers, hydrogels and biomimetic polymer materials are introduced, and applications by way of example explained. In the practical part a hydrogel will be synthesized and characterized to demonstrate the influence of synthetic parameters on the macroscopic properties of the material.


Course Materials and Techniques: A handout for all participants is available



For questions and registration please contact Michael Schroeter (, Cc



Peer to Peer - 3R - REFINE - REDUCE - REPLACE - meets Design Thinking





The 3R principle (Replacement, Reduction and Refinement of Animal Experiments) is of utmost significance for research with animals and offers great potential for advancement. Design Thinking is a method to facilitate problem-solving and the development of innovative solutions in multi-disciplinary teams.


We invite you to an interactive workshop focusing on the 3Rs. Think about new approaches regarding the 3Rs and figure out why their implementation in your daily research is sometimes challenging. By using Design Thinking methods, you get an unbiased and playful approach to the 3Rs and find creative space to exchange experiences and work on ways to further implement these principles. The course language is English. Ideally, participants in the "Rethink 3R" course have already gained initial experience in the field of 3Rs for finding highly innovative solutions. As a minimum level, participants are expected to read the information material sent out a few days before the course.


This interactive workshop only works with active and motivated participants, as this is essential for the teamwork and its results. Being shy for example is not a problem, but we need you to be engaged in this course. So please be sure you can relate to this if you register to the course.



Preclinical Studies - Animal experiments in science



A remote course!


Program - Day 1 (9 am to 1 pm)

Geetings - Agenda

A short history of animal experimental work

Ethical aspects

Putting animal experimental work into prospective

How to write the ethical statement for an animal proposal

Practical approach: an ethical statement

Ethics and moral –discussion


Program - Day 2 (9 am to 5 pm)

The 3 Rs Legalities

The different parts of an animal proposal

Who can apply for an animal experiment?

The dreaded statistics

Severity assessment

Humane end points

The score sheet


Documenting an animal experiment


Learning Objectives

1) Animal experiments and ethics

2) Get acquainted with the law

3) The 3 R rule

4) severity assessment

5) learn what it entails to write an animal proposal

6) Statistical planning – an experience



Skeletal Development


This practical course gives an introduction into the methods and technology used to investigate skeletal and muscle development in the mouse. The skeleton evolves from mesenchymal cells which differentiate into bone forming osteoblasts and cartilage forming chondrocytes. Through a complex genetic program these cells eventually form the mature bone, keep this tissue in homeostasis and provide a cellular resource for healing. Muscles on the other hand form from progenitors arising in the somites, which reach their final destionations via a migration process. During muscle formation a subpopulation of myogenic cells is arrested in the undifferentiatied state and serves as stem cells (so-called satellite cells) for regenerative processes in the adult. In this course, the participants will be able to investigate gene and protein expression during skeletogenesis and myogenesis in the mouse and to analyze skeletal malformations in mouse models for human skeletal disease. This course is aimed at providing a basic understanding for the genetic mechanisms that govern musculoskeletal patterning and differentiation during embryogenesis and to provide knowledge on how to analyze musculoskeletal phenotypes in animal models.


Course Materials and Techniques

The onset of skeletal and myogenic development in the embryo will be analyzed by RNA in-situ hybridisation, the formation of muscles and muscle stem cells will be analized by immunostaining on tissue sections. The differentiation of cartilage and bone will be analyzed by histology of embryonic tissue sections. The patterning and morphogenesis of the skeleton will be analyzed in wild type and mutant mice by whole mount skeletal staining.

Skeletal Development - Introduction to mouse bone analysis



This course is designed for students working on mouse bone phenotyping. The course introduces to the participants the basics of bone development and techniques to investigate skeletal morphological abnormalities found in mutant mice, using osteopetrosis and osteoporosis as examples. Each lecture is followed by a practical session in which participants will work on histomorphometric analysis and microCT analysis of mouse bone specimens.



In Vivo Technology - Transgenic animal technology (rodents)



This course will give an introduction in the technologies used to generate and phenotype transgenic and knockout rodents.


Practical part I: Generation of genetically engineered animals (Elena Popova)

Practical part II: Phenotyping of transgenic rats





This theoretical and practical basic histological course is designed for students from all scientific fields with no or just a minimal experience and background in histological analyses. The course will give an overview on the histology of tissue with a special focus on musculoskeletal tissue and its regeneration. Evaluation of tissue processes can be achieved by conventional stainings as well as cell interactions with immunohistological stainings. In lectures, we will teach basic knowledge about tissue anatomy, tissue preparation, different common staining methods as well as the scientific benefit and application possibilities of histological analyses. In the accompanying practical part, we will apply the theoretical knowledge on tissue samples including the tissue embedding process, the preparation of plastic and paraffin sections, different conventional and immunohistological staining procedures, microscopy and histomorphometry. An insight into nanoindentation and confocal microscopy will also be included in the course.


Course Materials and Techniques: different tissue samples, tissue handling for histology, basic histological preparation and staining methods, microtome, microscope, histomorphometry, nanoindentation, confocal microscopy

Networking Event


The Science Forum wants to encourage exchange of ideas and discoveries among the Cranach house community.


Each month (usualy the first Tuesday of the month at 16:00, please wait for the e-mail announcements), one PI and one junior scientist will present their work in the Cranach House. The junior scientist will give a TED-like talk and the PI will present a chalk talk with no slides. This new series covers hot research topics in an understandable and interesting way even for those who are not experts in the field.