Learning outcomes of the course unit
At the end of the course the students should have learnt the fundamentals of biochemistry and should be able to apply this knowledge to complex cases like the starved-fed cycle.
To deal with the topics of the Biochemistry course, students should possess a basic knowledge of Chemistry and Organic Chemistry.
Course contents summary
Protein structure. Protein folding and unfolding. Antibodies: structure and function. Structural, contractile and transport proteins. Enzymes: overview of the mechanism of action of enzymes and enzyme kinetics. Lipids with energy storage function. Overview of bioenergetics. “High energy” compounds. Glycolysis. Alcoholic and lactic acid fermentation. Synthesis and lysis of glycogen. Krebs cycle. Gluconeogenesis. Overview of lipid metabolism. Fatty acid beta-oxidation. Overview of amino acid metabolism. Degradation of amino acids. Correlation of amino acid metabolism with carbohydrate and lipid metabolism. Respiratory chain and oxidative phosphorylation. DNA and gene information. DNA replication and transcription. Ribosomal, transport and messenger RNA. The genetic code. Protein synthesis: translation. Overview of GMO.
Nelson e Cox - Introduzione alla Biochimica di Lehninger. Zanichelli Editore.
Denise Ferrier - Le Basi della Biochimica, 2a edizione. Zanichelli Editore.
Slides available on Elly website.
The oral lessons will focus on fundamentals of biochemistry with the support of slides (available weekly to the students on Elly website). The main metabolic processes will be discussed with the help of concept maps to help students focus on the relationships among metabolic pathways and their intermediates. A number of lessons will focus on the discussion of case studies and current topics, in order to stimulate the application of biochemistry to food, nutrition, gastronomy and the use of GMO in the agri-food sector. Multimedia and follow-up materials will also be available on Elly.
Assessment methods and criteria
The written exam will cover all the topics of the program. The exam will include 8 multiple choice questions (0, 1 or 2 points each) and 4 open questions (from 0 to 4 points each). Grades are between 0 and 30 e lode.