Exercise and Clinical Immunology

Dit vak wordt in het Engels aangeboden. Omschrijvingen kunnen daardoor mogelijk alleen in het Engels worden weergegeven.

Doel vak

The purpose of the course Exercise and Clinical Immunology is to
introduce students into the etiology of major chronic diseases in which
local or systemic inflammation and/or a compromised adaptive immune
response plays a substantial role. Students will be acquainted with the
basic principles and working mechanisms of the immune system and how
dysregulation thereof is involved in the etiology of chronic diseases.
Since evidence shows that exercise may impact on the functioning of the
immune system, students will get acquainted with the mechanisms via
which the physical exercise may affect cells of the immune system
directly or indirectly by modulation the function of other organ
systems. Students will explore and report by literature research the
current state of knowledge on the role of the immune system and exercise
in the development of the diseases discussed.

Inhoud vak

Chronic diseases such as Metabolic Syndrome, Diabetes II, Alzheimer,
Periodontitis, Cancer, Osteoporosis, Osteoarthritis, Ankylosing
spondylitis, Chronic low back pain as well as aging related frailty. The
8-10 chronic diseases are selected because they all have a high
prevalence and high morbidity (and some of them are also associated with
an increased mortality), low grade local or systemic inflammation plays
a role, and evidence is available that exercise has positive effects in
the majority of these diseases.
The course consists of a series of lectures in which clinical signs and
symptoms of the diseases and the role of the immune system will be
explained and discussed based on general knowledge as well as state of
the art results.
In order to prepare students with sufficient knowledge to understand the
role of the immune system in the different diseases, two introduction
lectures will be provided on general elements of the immune system,
innate immunity, adaptive immunity and vaccination. As physical exercise
seems to improve morbidity and reduce mortality is of patients suffering
from the above mentioned chronic diseases, questions will be addressed
whether and how physical exercise may affect immunocompetence and
development/progression of the disease. Exercise stimulates the
production of growth factors and cytokines in bones, skeletal muscle and
cardiorespiratory systems which may have paracrine and endocrine effects
on the cell and organs which are critically involved in development and
progression of one or more the diseases.


(30 hrs / 15 lectures, 8 hrs / 2 sessions with presentations, 120 hrs
preparation for contact hours and exam.
1. The course consists of a series of lectures in which either
clinicians with special clinical expertise and scientific background in
the disease or pre- clinical researchers will introduce the immune
system, major symptoms and etiology of the disease on which they are
professionally working and how the immune system and exercise are
involved in this. Since these lectures cover a wide range of aspects of
the disease they need extensive preparation by reading the papers.
2. During the course, students will write a research essay about one of
the diseases that will be discussed in the lectures.
3. Halfway the course, students will participate in a workshop entitled
"Giving an audience-focused presentation" to improve their presentation
At the end of the course each student will bring these skills into
practive by giving a
presentation about the disease to which they were assigned and the
outcome of their
literature research. After each presentation there is room for a group
The contact hours and presentations are intended to support
the learning process and have the following goals:
• To obtain an introduction into 8-10 clinical diseases
• To place immunology and exercise within a clinical context of
chronic diseases.
• To accentuate importance of the content
• To identify content importance for the movement sciences
• To discuss content difficulties that may arise after independent
study of assigned literature
• To practice knowledge obtained during the course.


The assessment consists of three parts:
- Short essay questions
- Writing a research essay
- Oral presentation about the topic of the research essay.

Vereiste voorkennis

The student should have basic knowledge and understanding of physiology,
molecular biology and exercise physiology.


The reading material consists of lecture notes, power point slides and
scientific papers and lecture notes, which will all be made available at
Black Board.

Algemene informatie

Studiepunten 6 EC
Periode P1
Vakniveau 400
Onderwijstaal Engels
Faculteit Fac. der Gedrags- en Bewegingswetensch.
Vakcoördinator dr. R.T. Jaspers
Examinator dr. R.T. Jaspers
Docenten dr. R.T. Jaspers
dr. ir. T.J. de Vries
prof. dr. W.F. Lems

Praktische informatie

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