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Syllabus
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How do you pick a textbook for a course that doesn't fall into an established field? Well, you don't. Such a new science depends on up-to-the-minute data. "The readings are going to be original research articles, usually four to five a week, available on reserve," says McClintock. The first day of class, McClintock brought up an article just published in Nature-even Quintans hadn't heard of it yet.

PHOTO:  QuintansTrue love or matching MHC?
Articles are kept on reserve in the Crerar Library, and many are also available on the Web. Miscellaneous textbooks on biology and psychology are also on reserve to fill gaps in the students' general scientific knowledge. Assigned articles carry complicated titles such as "Recognition among mice: evidence from the use of a Y-maze differentially scented by congenic mice of different major histocompatibility types"; "Ancestral and recombinant 16-locus HLA haplotypes in the Hutterites"; and the very romantic-sounding "MHC-dependent mate preferences in humans."

PHOTO:  McClintockEveryone gets an education
The undergraduates are not the only ones benefitting from this course; Quintans and McClintock are students as much as they are the teachers. "Few people are actually competent in this field; they are competent in small areas," says Quintans. "The reason Martha and I are so excited about doing this is because by the end of the quarter we will have a better understanding of the whole field than we do now." Perhaps the first generation of standard psychoneuroimmunology textbooks will be written by the students of today. - C.S.

 


  DECEMBER 2000

  > > Volume 93, Number 2


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