Lynne J. Cottee

This is a report on the work done by a half-time Lecturer. Much time was spent on teaching and administrative duties related to teaching, and some research was carried out in collaboration with Max Bennett of the Neurobiology Research Laboratory. There was some liaison with Liam Burke of the Brain Research Unit regarding the results of a previous project now being completed by Kris Turlejski in the Dept of Neurophysiology, Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology, Warsaw, Poland.

TEACHING in 1993

Dentistry 2

Practical classes: 5, each of 3 h, 2 of which were given 3 times, 2 of which were given 4 times, and one was given twice, on neurophysiology, skeletal muscle, respiration, cardiovascular physiology, sensory perception and central nervous system (= 48 h).

Tutorials: 11, each of 1 h (= 11 h).

Examination: short-answer questions.

Medicine 2

Practical classes: 4, each of 3 h, 3 of which were given twice, on neurophysiology, renal physiology, respiration and endocrinology (= 21 h).

Examination: short-answer questions.

Medicine 3

Practical classes: 5, each of 2 h, all given twice, on sensory perception and central nervous system (= 20 h).

Science 2

Practical classes: 11, with 10 of 3 h and 1 of 4 h, on haematology, neurophysiology, muscle, cell physiology, respiration, cardiovascular physiology, endocrinology, sensory perception and central nervous system (= 34 h).

Tutorials: 21, each of 1 h (= 21 h).

Essays: marked in both semesters 1 and 2.

Examination: short-answer questions.

Pharmacy 1

Lectures: 15 on sensory perception and central nervous system, as well as an introduction to the course.

Examination: multiple-choice questions (of the 5 alternatives, 1 correct, variety).

Science 3

Practical classes: 1, of 3 h (= 3 h).

Total distribution (hours of formal teaching)

Dent2 Med2 Sc2 Pharm1 Med3 Sc3 Total

Lectures 15 15

Practical classes (no.) 48(16) 22(7) 34(11) 20(10) 3(1) 127

Tutorials 11 21 32

Total formal contact teaching time = 174 h.

Additional time was spent in lecture preparation, setting and marking examinations, and marking major semester essays.

Other activities related to teaching

Student consultations:

Available for assistance to students in all these courses. This was particularly sought by the Dentistry, Science and Pharmacy students.

Course Supervisor for Physiology 1 for Pharmacy

Liaised with all the lecturers in this course, also with staff in the School of Biological Sciences and with the distributors of textbooks, was responsible for the examination papers and their marking, for the distribution of sample examination questions and their answers, for two evaluation questionnaires on the course attended. Participated in Examiners' Meetings, prepared the course guide, made decisions on exemptions sought by students.

Departmental adviser

Acted as an adviser to 1st and 2nd year students in the Faculty of Science, informing them of courses and requirements.

Teaching development

Attended two seminars on 'Lecture Presentation and Motivational Techniques' organized by the Centre for Teaching and Learning, and teaching presentations given by the staff members judged to be excellent teachers in 1993.

RESEARCH in 1993

The ultrastructural features of neuromuscular synapses in the autonomic nervous system, specifically in the rat vas deferens, have been examined in order to extend our understanding of the mechanisms of transmitter release onto these smooth muscle cells. As there is much debate about the closeness of nerve contacts onto smooth muscle, serial sections have been used to accumulate detailed information on the width of the synaptic cleft, the apposition of the basal laminae, the distribution of vesicles within the varicosities of the nerve endings and the relationship of glial processes to the synapse. To date, two hundred serial sections have been cut and are being analyzed. This project has been carried out in collaboration with Max Bennett of the Neurobiology Laboratory, using the facilities of The University's Electron Microscope Unit for transmission electron microscopy and computer image analysis.


The project described above concerning neuromuscular synapses onto smooth muscle cells in the vas deferens will continue during 1994. Much of the detailed analysis required in this project still remains to be done, as well as further work on computer reconstructions to help visualize the relationships at the synapse. The collaboration and use of facilities will remain as stated above.



Cottee LJ, Fitzgibbon T, Westland K, Burke W (1991) Long survival of retinal ganglion cells in the cat after selective crush of the optic nerve. European Journal of Neuroscience, 3, 1245-1254 *

*Item also appears in report for W. Burke