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Fotini Stylianopoulou, Professor Emeritus of Biology, Faculty of Nursing, School of Health Sciences, National & Kapodistrian University of Athens

Efthymia Kitraki, Professor of Biology, School of Dentistry, National & Kapodistrian University of Athens

Teaching hours and weekly schedule

This a 2nd semester, 2 weeks elective course that corresponds to 3 ECTs and 27 total hours of teaching and student presentations.


This is an intensive 2-week course focused on Neuroendocrinology that includes lectures and students' presentations.  All material will focus primarily on the neuroendocrine axes that control reproduction, metabolism, stress and pain responses , water & electrolyte balance and sleep-awakening  rhythms.  The impact of genetic and epigenetic factors on axes' function and their interactions will be also addressed. The course aims to provide a comprehensive canvas on the mechanisms of hormonal control of the nervous system function in health and disease. Students' presentations on selected topics will enhance understanding through active learning.

Course Overview

The course covers the general principles of hormone actions in the central nervous system by providing the underlying mechanisms and the different levels of regulation. More specifically, lectures and students' presentations  will enable to :

•             Understand the central and peripheral centres participating in the neuroendocrine control

•             Understand the positive and negative feedback loops participating in the neuroendocrine axes' regulation

•             Understand the molecular mechanisms of neuroendocrine control

•             Understand the interactions among different neuroendocrine axes

•             Understand the role of genetic and epigenetic factors in the modification of neuroendocrine function

•             Understand how deregulation of neuroendocrine function is linked to disease

Skills & Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

1.            Describe the function of the major neuroendocrine axes in mammals

2.            Describe the possible interactions among the different neuroendocrine axes

3.            Describe the genetic and epigenetic impact on axes' function

4.            Relate the neuroendocrine axes' dysfunction with health outcomes

Titles of lectures and names of the lecturers

Neuroendocrinology Lecturers
Co-ordinators: Fotini Stylianopoulou, Efthymia Kitraki
Basic principles and overview of the course Fotini Stylianopoulou
The hypothalamic- pituitary- adrenal axis and the regulation of the stress response Efthymia Kitraki
The hypothalamic-pituitary- gonadal axis and the regulation of reproduction George Mastorakos
Neuroendocrine control of growth Melpomeni Peppa
Hormones in sexual differentiation of the brain Efthymia Kitraki
Circadian rhythms Anastasia Repouskou
Neuroendocrine control of pain Antonios Stamatakis
Neuroendocrine control of water and ion balance Antonios Stamatakis
Neuroendocrine control of food intake Constantinos Tsigos
Interactions of the neuroendocrine axes Fotini Stylianopoulou
Epigenetics in neuroendocrine functions Fotini Stylianopoulou