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Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cell Biology: Cell-Cell Interactions

Massachusetts Institute of Technology via edX


This is the final cell biology course in a three-part series. Building upon the concepts from biochemistry, genetics, and molecular biology from our 7.00x Introductory Biology and 7.05x Biochemistry MOOCs, these cell biology courses transition to a comprehensive discussion of biology at an experimental level. How do we know what we know about cells at a molecular level and how can we use that knowledge to design experiments to test hypotheses in cell biology?

How do you go from a single cell to trillions of cells working together? And what happens when this amazing collective is confronted with pathogens? Professors Rebecca Lamason and Sebastian Lourido will challenge you to apply your foundational knowledge of cell biology to the next level. You will explore how cells function to maintain organism health and the consequences if these processes fail.

We developed the 7.06x Cell Biology series with an emphasis on:

  • Developing your scientific thinking skills including articulating hypotheses, performing thought experiments, interpreting data, and designing experiments.
  • Using data based on real scientific experiments and highlighting the scientific process in assessments.
  • Asserting that biology is an active field that changes daily through examples of research and relevance to medicine, not static information in a textbook.
  • Uniting themes and principles that inform how scientists conduct and interpret research.
  • Implementing the science of learning in the course design.


  • Cell Adhesion and Polarity
  • Morphogenesis, Stem Cells, and Regeneration
  • Cell Death and Autophagy
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions
  • Cell Biology of Immune Systems
  • Cancer and Metastasis

Taught by

Iain Cheeseman, Mary Ellen Wiltrout, Darcy Gordon and Caitlin Friend


5.0 rating, based on 5 Class Central reviews

5 rating at edX based on 5 ratings

Start your review of Cell Biology: Cell-Cell Interactions

  • Overall an amazing course, the professor makes the topics very compelling and interesting, and the animations/graphics are superb, as usual with MITx

    My only major commentary (as for the rest of the Cell Biology courses from MITx) is that you're not allowed to take the quiz for the last unit if you're auditing the course, which I think goes against the incentives to finish the unit. (I am not talking about the competency exam, which I totally understand reserving for registered uses, as the right to obtain a certificate. I am talking about small graded quizzes at the end of each unit, which you can do for the rest of the units but not for the last one)
  • Anonymous
    It was a very useful course like other biology series from MIT, although I had studied other prerequisite courses a while ago, I learnt from just this course very effective and helped me to remember many subjects. I had very ups and downs in this co…
  • Anonymous
    As a high school AP Biology teacher, this is an excellent course, both for reviewing content I learned in college and discovering microscopic experimental techniques that I was not exposed to back in my 20th-century undergrad education. Now, when students ask me, "how did they discover this stuff about cells?" or "how do motor proteins do that?" I have more experience and knowledge to offer. The videos used during the lectures and the analogies offered by the professors are very helpful and provide me with insight into current collegiate expectations and ways of conveying information at the high school level. Great course to work through and a very enjoyable challenge for a high school educator during the summer.
  • Anonymous
    I am not a biologist (yet). In university I took only one introductory biology course as I focused on philosophy, mathematics and business. I have been taking the MITx biology and genetics courses to broaden my understanding of this important area. This course was very informative and I learned a great deal.
  • Anonymous
    A continuation of MIT's excellent Cell Biology course cycle. This new course focuses on the structural properties and roles of the cytoskeleton, and how it's constantly dynamic and changing within the cell. Excellent problem sets, and I'm learning a lot!

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