European partnership project ISIS-Tempus

The project aims to dedicate a common Master's degree in Euro-Mediterranean in neuroscience, and biotechnology, in the framework of the ISIS-Tempus project, and funded by the European Union and in partnership with the 6 countries in North and South Mediterranean (France, Italy, Spain, Morocco, Lebanon, Egypt).


Allowed to register for this degree for students who obtained the degree of Bachelor of Science in disciplines (Zoology, Botany, Microbiology, Biochemistry) from the Egyptian or foreign universities such as (Bachelor of Medicine, Pharmacy or agriculture ....), provided that it has been more than ten years on their access to bachelor's degree.


This degree qualifies their recipients for:


1- Specialists in laboratory neuroscience and applied biotechnology

2- Registration for a PhD in the same disciplines, whether in Egypt or in foreign universities participating in the project.


Future vision


Upon approval of Alexandria University on dedicating this degree, will be required from Zoology Department an internationally assessment for the quality of courses to enable them to obtain the consent of all the universities involved in the project to make it a common certificate between the southern universities firstly and then the Northern.


Details of study


1- Duration of the study two years (four semesters at least) and the academic year consists of two semesters (autumn and spring) and the duration of the semester 15-week and all study in English language.

2- Courses are taught in the first three seasons; both electronically or by presence in various universities in parallel and study include scientific research experiments experience for thesis and writing and providing it not less than six months from the beginning.

3- Courses of the third semester contain four different scientific courses but simultaneous and equal in credit hours, thus students enrolled in this program may choose one of it at the beginning of the second year.

4- When student passes courses in the first three seasons successfully, should perform experiments (laboratory or practical or medical) not less than 24 weeks (six months) in the subject which determined by the supervising professor in his university in the origin country with the academic overseeing committee which nominated by overseeing committee, in this case the student submits a proposal for scientific research as one of the attachments.

5- The student discusses the obtained results in the origin country or remotely.


* Calculation of credit hours and school fees:


1- Number of credit hours needed to obtain the degree of Master of Science is 120 credit hours in European system (ECTS) or the equivalent of 30 credit hours (ECTS) in each semester of the first three seasons and is allocated 30 credit hours for the thesis.


2- Courses will be taught either electronically or by presence at various universities in parallel so that each university is considering the specialty in which excels.


* Proposed courses:


Details of the courses that start with code number from NSB 601 to NSB 698, and following is course outline:

Course outline

 (Semester 1 (NSB 601 to NSB 613 core = 30 ECTS


Course Title


NSB 601

Language and Communication


NSB 605

Biotechnology and bioinformatics


NSB 609

Functional and cognitive neuroanatomy


NSB 613

Cellular neurobiology/physiology


 Semester 2 (NSB 602 to NSB 610 core = 18 ECTS):


Course Title


NSB 602

Tools and Methodologies in Neuroscience


NSB 606

Experimental approaches of neuropathology


NSB 610

Behavior, emotion and cognition


Semester 2 (NSB 614 to NSB 626 elective = 12 ECTS):


Course Title


NSB 614



NSB 618

Genomics and proteomics


NSB 622

Developmental biology & ageing


NSB 626



Semester 3 (NSB 617 to NSB 625 core = 18 ECTS):


Course Title


NSB 617



NSB 621

Regulations, laws and Bioethics


NSB 625

Drug development


 Semester 3: Track 1 - Molecular and cellular Neuroscience

(NSB 629 to NSB 637 elective = 12 ECTS):


Course Title


NSB 629

Plasticity and cell communication


NSB 633

Neurogenesis, Stem cells and transplantation


NSB 637

Case study in Biotechnology


Semester 3: Track 2 - Integrative and system biology

(NSB 641 to NSB 653 elective = 12 ECTS):


Course Title


NSB 641

From sensation to perception


NSB 645

From perception to action


NSB 649

Integrative physiology


NSB 653

Computational neuroscience and neural network




Semester 3: Track 3 - Medical neuroscience and neuroimaging

(NSB 657 to NSB 665 elective = 12 ECTS):


Course Title


NSB 657

Morpho-Functional Imaging


NSB 661



NSB 665

Diagnostic and therapeutic tools development


 Semester 3: Track 4 - Neuropharmacology and Innovative therapeutics

(NSB 669 to NSB 677 elective = 12 ECTS):


Course Title


NSB 669

Neurotransmitters and their pharmacology


NSB 673

Neuropharmacological mechanisms of Pathophysiology


NSB 677

Recent advances in Neuropharmacology


 Semester 4: Core Practical Training = 30 ECTS:


Course Title


NSB 698

Long training period (Thesis)


Course Description:

 First year / First semester / Core courses (30 ECTS):

1. NSB 601: Language and Communication (3 credits):

Linguistic Remediation, communication, public expression, summary, abstract, presentations preparation, introduction of scientific communication, evaluation of a scientific document, how to extract information from a scientific document, evaluation of use of information impact, impact of scientific communication on Research and development.

 2. NSB 605: Biotechnology and bioinformatics (9 credits):

Cell cultures, cloning and eucaryotic expression vectors’ constructions, morphological approaches and cellular imaging, biochemical approaches, principles of bioinformatics, nature of data bases, data bases practical use.

 3. NSB 609: Functional and cognitive neuroanatomy (9 credits):

Basic principles of neural processing: global vs serial processing, macrocircuits and microcircuits, short vs long term processing, membrane processes, synaptic plastic changes, basic architecture of the nervous system, basic methods for studying functional anatomy; Main divisions and subdivisions of the nervous system: anatomic vs functional systems, main structures of the peripheral nervous system, spinal cord, brainstem and cerebellum, diencephalon, telencephalon; Major pathways of sensory processing: somatosensory system, visual system, auditory and vestibular systems, chemosensory systems; Major pathways of sensory integration: sensory integration along the ascending systems, multisensory reflexes, cortical integration; Major pathways of cognitive processing: the cortico-entorhinal-hippocampal reciprocal pathways, the prefrontal-amygdala-hippocampal pathway, subcortical modulation of cortical pathways; Major motor and vegetative pathways: basic circuits of sleep-wake mechanisms, homeostatic integration and modulation, motor pathways (Motor spinal reflexes, the pyramidal pathway, cortico-subcortical motor processing).

 4. NSB 613: Cellular neurobiology/physiology (9 credits):

Nerve cell electrophysiology : membrane biophysics, rest potentiel, action potential, excitation kinetics, signal intracellular propagation mechanisms (action potential genesis and propagation); Synaptic transmission : neurones’ classifications, chemical excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission, advanced study of mediator liberation mechanism, neuron synaptic message integration; Membrane receptors : neurotransmitters’ characteristics and liberation mechanisms, neurotransmitters’ receptors and signal transduction mechanisms, neurons intrinsic properties.


First year / Second semester / Core courses (18 ECTS):


1. NSB 602: Tools and Methodologies in Neuroscience (6 credits):

Techniques used in Neuroscience Research: Techniques for Morphofunctional studies of neuromediators and techniques of neuro-anatomical labelling (microscopic techniques: optic, transmission and scanning electronic), techniques of in situdetection (histochemistry, fluorescence, radioactivity heavy metals, enzymes), immunohistochemical techniques (antibodies, labelling stains, in situ hybridization techniques, cerebral tracks identification techniques (labelling, decline),membranous biophysics techniques: liposome synthesis, liquid vein micro-electrophoresis, measure of surface potential, superficial pressure, superficial tension and DSC (differential scanning calorimetry), Extraction of different plant natural substances (alkaloids, flavonoids, saponins): separation techniques (CPG, HPLC, CCM), revealing methods, biological tests (anti-depressor, antalgic, antipsychotic …),Intracellular signal collection: electrophysiological techniques (gain current, gain voltage, saccharose double partition, patch clamp), techniques of intracellular calcium movements measure, ionic channels and membrane receptors expression; Biostatistics and data treatment: Statistics and essential probability laws: Estimation and confidence interval, hypothesis test, analysis of factor variance (Tukey test), non parametric sample comparison tests (Wilcoxon–Mann–Wiley: two independent samples, Wilcoxon: related samples), methods of regression and two-factor variance analysis.

2. NSB 606: Experimental approaches of neuropathology (6 credits):

Molecular and cellular approaches of nervous system diseases: genetic, cell biology and Neuropharmacology approaches; Experimental models, methods, mechanisms and therapeutic strategies: animal models, experimental analogues of human pathologies, Legitimacy of procedures, interpretation limits, towards new therapeutic targets.


 3. NSB 610: Behaviour, emotion and cognition (6 credits):

Part 1: Emotion: I-Introduction to emotion, II- Neurobiology of emotion (First example: aggression and aggressive behaviour, Second example: pleasure and addictive behaviour, Third example: fear and aversive behaviour); Part 2: Cognitive functions: I- Introduction to cognition, II- Neurobiology of cognitive functions (First example: visual recognition and agnosia, Second example: speech and related disorders (aphasia and apraxia), Third example: declarative memory and amnesia); Part 3: Interactions between emotion and cognition: I- Introduction to emotion-cognition interactions, II- Neurobiology of emotion-cognition interactions (First example: memory, Second example: decision-making, Third example: emotional regulation and emotional intelligence).


First year / Second semester / elective courses (12 ECTS):


  1. 1.NSB 614)Biophysics (6 credits)

Molecular and cellular biophysics: structure of macromolecules in solution, forces of interactions and stabilisations of macromolecular ultrastructures, organised systems and biological membranes, dynamics of biological pairs: modelization and theory, flux cytometry; Techniques of spectroscopic and sensory analysis and separation of biomolecules: visible-UV spectroscopy, spectroscopy of middle infrared, Raman spectroscopy, emission spectroscopy: fluorometry (FRET, FLIM, FRAP…), radioactivity and biomolecules.

  1. 1.2.NSB 618Genomics and proteomics

Structure of the genome and its modifications (additive and targeted transgenesis), comparative Genomic (evo-devo concepts), Transcriptome analyses (microarray, qRT-PCR,…), study of the proteome (expression and differential expression analyses, protein-protein interactions), use of bioinformatics databases (NCBI, Ensembl, Expasy,…).

  1. 1.31. Developmental biology

Neural induction and pattern formation, cell lineage and fate determination, neuronal migration, axon guidance, synapse formation and stabilization, development of neuroendocrine systems, molecular tools in developmental biology and biotechnology, evolution and development, mechanisms of somatic selection, biological aging processes and age-related diseases affecting the nervous system.

  1. 1.4.NSB 626: Neuropharmacology (6 credits

Biosynthesis, liberation and inactivation of classical neurotransmitters (glutamate, GABA, dopamine, noradrenalin, serotonin, acetylcholine, neuropeptides), receptors and transporters, potential neuro-pharmacological targets for drug development; approaches to study system functioning: in vitro (biochemistry, molecular biology, cerebral distribution study by immunohistochemistry), in vivo(measurement of liberation, behavioural studies) in a neuro-pharmacological frame (ligand-receptor link); techniques to be used: molecular/cellular methods to study Neuro-Psychopharmacology, new approaches: transcriptomic, proteomic - Knock-out, anti-sense, RNAi, pharmaco-genetics, models of behavioural studies; mechanisms of action of main classes of psychotropes, examples of perspective pharmaco-therapies for central dysfunctions, the big steps of development of a psychotrope/neurotrope drug from a professional point of view.





Second year / First semester / Core courses (18 ECTS):


  1. 1.1.NSB 617: Economy (6 credits

Economy laws; Application in research domain: in national environment, in an environment of globalization; Principles of quality control; Methods of quality control; Intellectual properties in an environment of globalization: theoretical studies, practical methods.

  1. 1.2.NSB 621: Regulations, laws and Bioethics (6 credits

General notes on morality and bioethics, review of international and national texts, analysis of ethical challenges in the different steps of research, real and virtual case studies.

  1. 1.3.NSB 625Drugdevelopment (6 credits

Pharmacology and drug study, Justification of clinical research, main drug classes, drug development: preclinical and clinical phases, methodology of clinical trials and statistical reminder, protocols and their conception, regulations, pharmacovigilance

Second year / First semester / Track 1 - Molecular and cellular Neuroscience Optional courses (12 ECTS):

  1. 1.1.NSB 629: Plasticity and cell communication (9 credits

     Neuronal plasticity: long-term potentiation, long-term depression; Molecular mechanisms of synaptic plasticity: activity-dependent changes in gene expression, post-translational modifications of proteins, membrane receptor trafficking; Neuron-glia interactions; Anatomical plasticity during in physiological conditions and after nerve injury; Pathophysiological roles of neuronal plasticity: memory, pain.

  1. 1.2.NSB 633: Neurogenesis, Stem cells and transplantation (6 (credits)

Neurogenesis and regeneration of the CNS: Defining neural stem cells, progenitors and precursors, Neurogenic (olfactory bulb, dentate gyrus) versus non-neurogenic regions in the adult brain, Neurogenesis and migration, Neuronal cell death, Control of Differentiation, Neural development; Stem cells and therapy engineering: Haematopoiesis (progenitors, stem cells and micro-environment), myogenesis (determination genes and myogenesis), normal and pathological angiogenesis, visualization of transplanted cellsin vivo using super paramagnetic nanoparticles and magnetic resonance.

  1. 1.3.NSB 637: Case study in Biotechnology (6 credits

     Virtually realization of different molecular expression vector constructs including: full length proteins, truncated proteins, GFP-protein or a TAG-protein at the N or C terminus, detailed projection of the constructs of molecular plasmids and transfection protocols, careful discussion of technical problems.



Second year / First semester / Track 2 - Integrative and system biology / Optional courses (12 ECTS):

  1. 1.1.NSB 641: From sensation to perception (6 credits)

Perception psychology: introduction to perception, perceptions (visual perception, interpretation of the visual perception, hearing, taste, olfactory and proprioceptive perceptions); Sensory treatments (Ex: somaesthetic and visual sensibility): receptors of somaesthesia (cutaneous and subcutaneous somaesthetic receptors, touch mechanoreceptors, differential sensibility of the body surface to mechanical stimuli, proprioceptive mechanoreceptors, active tactile exploration,  dorso-lemnesic median column system, principal ways of the mechanical sensibility, trigeminal division of the mechanical sensibility system, the  somaesthetic thalamus, the somaesthetic cortex, cortical representations), receptors and visual ways (visual receptors, transduction and light message coding, different levels of visual information treatment, dorsal thalamus, primary visual cortex, cortical representations of the visual information).

  1. 1.2.NSB 645: From perception to action (6 credits

Cortico-cortical management of: decision making circuits, working memory, explicit and implicit responses; The emotional response: intra-amygdaline connections, stress response, PAG, brainstem, hypothalamus, vegetative nervous system; The spinal circuits: the motor units, the basic circuits in the ventral horn, main reflexes, the inferior neuron syndrome; The cortico-spinal pathway: the motor cortex, the pyramidal pathway, crossed and uncrossed fibre, the superior neuron syndrome; The cortico-basal pathways: the organization of basal ganglia, subthalamus, motor thalamus and substantia nigra, direct and undirect pathways, Parkinson’s and Huntington’s syndromes; The cerebellar pathways: basic circuits in the cerebellum, main divisions of the cerebellum and pathways, the cerebellar syndrome.

  1. 1.(6creditsIntegrative physiologyNSB 649

     Biological rhythms: main concepts, diversity, emergence of chronobiology; Circadian rhythms: the master daily biological clock (the suprachiasmatic nuclei of the hypothalamus), “clock genes” (molecular basis of the endogenous pacemaker, a new retinal photopigment for entrainment of the central clock by light, other daily clocks in the body, feeding and other non-photic cues as synchronizers of circadian rhythms, control of daily physiology by the suprachiasmatic nuclei (autonomous, melatonin and other neuroendocrine outputs); Seasonal rhythms: photoperiodism, a circadian clock for the detection of seasons, an endogenous circannual clock, neuroendocrine control of gonadal activity, seasonal plasticity, surviving the bad season (hibernation, daily torpor, metabolic depression); Rhythms in Human: circadian and homeostatic control of the sleep/wake cycle, circadian rhythm disturbances (jet lag, shift work, seasonal depression), chronotherapy.

  1. 1.4.NSB 653: Computational neuroscience and neural network (3 credits)

Introduction to Computational Neuroscience; neural spike train analysis and modeling; from single neuron to large scale networks, ionic models; computational and dynamical approaches to motor control

Second year / First semester / Track 3 - Medical neuroscience and neuroimaging / Optional courses (12 ECTS):

  1. 1.1.NSB 657: Morpho-Functional Imaging (9 credits

     Neuroanthropology & Neuroimaging: Cephalic reference lines suitable for morphofunctional & interventional brain neuroimaging, in human & mammals, in vivo as in cadaver; Neuromorphology, Neuromorphometry & Neuroimaging: Overview of fissural & gyral pattern of the brain cortex, brain mapping, using in vivo 3D-MRI, interindividual variability of sulcal patterns in normal and patients with chromosomal aberrations or cognitive disorders; Morphofunctional brain neuroimaging: Topographical & functional cortical anatomy of the Central region, the Perisylvian cognitive region, the Limbic lobe & mesial temporal region using in vivo 3D-MRI & f-MRI, topographical & functional cortical anatomy of the Striate cortex & visual pathways; Topographical & functional brain anatomy & imaging: white matter core & major tracts using in vivo MR-tractography with anatomical correlations; Regional brain neuroimaging: Topographical anatomy of the basal forebrain, diencephalon, basal ganglia, brainstem & cerebellum

  1. 1.2.NSB 661: Pathophysiology (6 credits

     Neurodegenerative: Alzheimer & allied dementias (Neuropathology, Neurochemistry, functional imaging and cellular hypothesis of AD, LBD, FTD & VaD and mixed dementias); Parkinson’s diseases & Gait disorders: Neuropathology, Neurochemistry, functional imaging and cellular hypothesis of PD & pathophysiology and analysis of Gait disorders; Epilepsy: Neurophysiology & cellular mechanisms of epileptic seizures, recording procedures, major etiologies & classifications; Pain: Neurophysiology, cellular mechanisms and classification of pain syndromes, clinical applications in treatment choice; Stroke & anoxia: Neurophysiology & cellular mechanisms of brain ischemia and anoxia, functional imaging, critical situations (diving & high altitude etc…); Traumatic CNS and PNS injuries: Cellular mechanisms of commotion, concussion & diffuse axonal injury, spinal cord and peripheral nerve injuries, advances in functional imaging & neural repair; MS & Inflammatory diseases: Neuropathology, functional imaging and cellular mechanisms of MS, ADEM & infectious diseases (CJD, brucellosis, TB, parasitic disorders).

  1. 1.3.NSB 665: Diagnostic and therapeutic tools development (6 credits))

     Neuro-Electrophysiology: Polysomnography, VEP, SEP, AEP, EEG, video–EEG, EMG; Computational neuroimaging & image processing: V-CT, f-MRI, MRS, DWI, PWI, SPECT, PET, MEG; Neurostimulation: Intra-operative procedures & cortical stimulations, vagus nerve stimulation, spinal cord stimulation; Interventional neuroradiology & allied procedures: Vascular neuroangiography, biopsy & stereotactic procedures; Radiosurgery & stereotactic radiotherapy: Gamma knife, cyberknife, IMRT, brachytherapy.

Second year / First semester / Track 4 Neuropharmacology and Innovative therapeutics / Optional courses (12 ECTS):

  1. 1.1.NSB 669: Neurotransmitters and their pharmacology (9 credits))

     Biochemistry of neurotransmitters: Identification criteria, synthesis, liberation, fixation, capture and degradation, transmission and co-transmission, interaction neurotransmitter–receptor, inotropic and metabotropic neurotransmitters; Classification of neurotransmitters: Acetylcholine, biogenic amines, amino acids, neuropeptides; Dose-effect relation, interaction between neurotransmitters, neuromodulation; Action of neurotransmitters: Command mechanisms, neuromuscular junction, neurovegetative system, transmission mechanisms (neuron to neuron); Pathology linked to neurotransmission anomalies: Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, pain, epilepsy; Drugs action: Action sites, action modes, receptors, receptor-ligand Reaction.

  1. 1.2.NSB 673: Neuropharmacological mechanisms of Pathophysiology (6 credits))

     Transmission ways implicated in neurological diseases: signalling pathways disturbance, associations of neurotransmitters secreted during these diseases, receptors implicated in signal transduction; Modern therapeutic tools: drug approaches, pharmacology of neuronal systems, receptors activation, concentration of available neurotransmitters, non-drug approaches (stimulations, global approaches), consequences on the transmission systems; New therapeutic approaches: tools to define new therapeutic targets and new drug associations through recent development of pharmacological research, evolution towards neuroprotection in neurodegenerative diseases.

  1. 1.3.NSB 677: Recent advances in Neuropharmacology (6 credits))

Diseases and drug rhythms: rhythms in pharmacokinetics and drug metabolism, rhythms and drug renal excretion, rhythms and nocturnal asthma drugs, rhythms, allergies and antihistaminic H1, rhythms, inflammations and non-steroids anti-inflammatory drugs, rhythms, gastric ulcers and H2 receptors blockers.

Second year / Second semester / Core elective Training (30 ECTS):


v NSB 698: Long Training Period (Thesis: 30 credits):

Students will perform a research and development project (thesis) in Neuroscience and Biotechnology domains. The practical placement will constitute all semestre 4. It will take place in a research laboratory or in a private R&D research laboratory. The subject and the supervisor of the scientific research will be previously discussed with the laboratory or enterprise. The pedagogical advisor will visit or contact the student and the supervisor to make sure of the good functioning of the training. In conjunction with his / her supervisor, the student will be in charge of determining the scientific objectives of the practical placement, choosing the adapted methods and available tools to answer the scientific question, applying these methods, analyzing the experimental results, suggesting an interpretation taking the existing bibliographic data into consideration, writing a descriptive dissertation, orally defending the thesis using adapted teaching tools.







Names of universities participating in the project




(1) Université Victor Segalen Bordeaux 2,146 rue Léo Saignat, F-33076 Bordeaux Cedex, France


(2) Alexandria University,22 El Gueish Ave; Al Shatby, Alexandria, EGYPT


(3) Université Francophone de Senghor,1 place Ahmed Orabi, Alexandria, EGYPT


(4)Université Caddi Ayyad,Avenue Prince Moulay Abdellah, BP 511 - 40000 Marrakech, MOROCCO


(5)Université Abdelmalek Essaadi,Avenue Moulay Al Hassan, PP.211, 93150 Martil, MOROCCO


(6)Université Saint-Joseph,Rectorat, Rue de Damas, BP17-5208 Mar Mikahel, Beyrouth 1104 2020, LEBANON


(7)Université Saint-Esprit of Kaslik,PO Box: 446 Jounieh, LEBANON


(8)Université de Turin,Via Verdi 8, 10124 Torino, ITALY


(9)Université  de Valencia Estudi general,Av Blasco Ibañez 13, 46010 Valencia, SPAIN


 (10)Université Aix-Marseille2,Jardins du Pharo 58, bvd Charles Livon, 13007 Marseille Cedex 07, FRANCE


(11)UniversityofNice– Sophia Antipolis,28 avenue Valrose, BP2135, F-06103 Nice Cedex 2, FRANCE



Associated Partners : 

(12)Association NEUREX Alsace (NEUREX),Parc de l’innovation, 9 bvd Gonthier d’Andernach, F-67 400 Illkrich-Graffenstaden, FRANCE


(13) Groupement de Recherche International de Neurosciences Fondamentales et Cliniques (GDRI neuro), CNRS/CNRST,INCM-CNRS, 31 chemin Joseph Aiguier, 13042 Marseille Cedex 20


(14)Landau Network au Centro di Cultura Scientifica “A.Volta” (LNCV),Villa Olmo, Via Cantoni 1, 22100 Como, Italy