Evolutionary Medicine I 2023

Evolutionary Medicine I

Module code


Abbreviated title

EvoMed I

Module components

Lecture, seminar, practical exercise


Semester 2

Module coordinator/





J. Baines (IEM), A. Nebel (IKMB), H. Schulenburg (Zoology)

Contact hours

Lecture 2 CH                 Seminar 2 CH                    Practical exercise 2 CH






Total: 150 h

Lecture: 30 h
Attendance time 26 h, revision 4 h
Seminar: 60 h
Attendance time 28 h, preparation 22 h, revision 10 h
Practical exercise: 60 h
Attendance time 38 h, preparation 12 h, revision 10 h

Credit points

5 (lectures 1 CP, seminar 2 CP, practical exercise 2 CP)


MolBio passed

Expected outcome

Knowledge: Students

- understand the basic principles of evolutionary biology, human evolution, evolutionary medicine

- are familiar with methods of genetic analysis

- are familiar with the most important theories in evolutionary biology as a basic science for medicine.

Skills: Students

- can apply statistical tests and software for data evaluation.

Competences: Students

- can transfer acquired knowledge to new scientific tasks

- are able to familiarize themselves with a scientific topic through literature research

- understand an English scientific publication and can discuss it critically

- can develop an oral presentation taking into account English scientific publications

- are aware of the social and ethical implications disease research has and take them into account in their research work.



Lecture: Evolutionary biology in medicine: developmental biology, anatomy, genetic variation, natural selection, population genetics, molecular develop-ment, human development and disease, life-history theory; principles of evolution in nutrition and metabolism, disease and drug resistance.

Seminar: Discussion of current scientific literature.

Practical exercise: Rotation through diagnostic labs (e.g. osteology, staining/microscopy, bacterial cell cultures) executing lab experiments under supervision.

Module evaluation/



Written exam

Media used

PPT presentations, lab experiments, manuals and instructions for lab work, case studies.


Ridley M, Evolution (John Wiley & Sons 2003) [still valid, no new edition available]

Gluckman P, Beedle A, Hanson M, Principles of Evolutionary Medicine (OUP 2nd edition, 2016)

Stearns S, Medzhitov R, Evolutionary Medicine (Sinauer Associates 2015)

Current original publications and reviews