MOLECULAR AND APPLIED BIOLOGY
Learning outcomes of the course unit
The main purpose is to stimulate the interest for biological phenomena trough the hypothetic-deductive logic applied in science. For this reason all the understanding of the subjects is obtained by the study of the experiments by which the major discoveries have been obtained and allowed the development of theories. This is pivotal for the students future ability to observe , make hypotheses and planning experiments to test the hypothesis. This will also increase the student capacity to communicate and use the acquired knowledge .
Consequently the student will become familliar with the different levels of organization of the living matter( from molecules to behaviour). In particular the students will,learn the principle of evolution from the origin of the procariotic and eucariotic cell, cellular communication, the mendelian genetic, the chromosomal theory , sexual selection and sexual reproduction. and the molecular biology ( especially genetic information transmission).
Course contents summary
The purpose of this course is to give students the ability to learn and appreciate the importance of scientific method and biological knowledge ( especially Molecular biology, general biology , genetic, evolutionary biology and laboratory techniques in Biology) for the cultural background of graduates in health care professions.
APPLIED BIOLOGY: The evolutionary approach is the core theme of the present course. In fact the theory of evolution is the unifying principle of the biological sciences ranging from molecule activities to behavior of organisms. In this connection the various topics ( focused mainly on animal biology) such as molecular bases of life, cellular biology, genetic, reproduction , animal and human behavior are necessarily approached with a good knowledge of the mechanisms of evolution. This lecturing program is conceived to give a biological cultural background to future graduates specialized for health care professions.
MOLECULAR BIOLOGY:The course provides basic knowledge on the molecular aspects of the transmission of genetic information. The course initially introduces the basics of the concept of inheritance, and then introduces nucleic acids as molecules able to ensure the transmission of the genetic information through DNA replication, RNA transcription and proteins translation. Finally the course will provide the basis for the knowledge of the main techniques used for DNA/RNA manipulation, and their application in various fields of research, diagnosis, forensic medicine and treatment of human diseases.
BIOMEDICAL LABORATORY TECHNIQUES: This course represents the first step in learning the basic contents of laboratory medicine and includes:
- brief historical and normative excursus on the birth of laboratory medicine and health professions in Italy;
- role and functions of the biomedical analysis laboratory in health; - learning of the theoretical principles of laboratory semeiotics concerning pre-analytical variables and related errors, analytical variability and instrumental analytics concerning in particular: the principles of colorimetry, photometry and spectrophotometry.
I Quality controls and the principles of preparation and measurement of calibration / calibration curves.
The foundation and core of biological sciences: the theory of evolution
2. Chemistry of life. Biological macromolecules and their functions. Origin and evolution of life on earth. Origin of the cell: Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic cell. The endosymbiontic theory of eukaryotic cell evolution.
3. Cell Biology with particular emphasis on Eukaryotic cell. Structures and functions of cell components. Cell cycle and asexual reproduction .Mytosis and cell cycle. Basic understanding of cell metabolism: glycolisis and oxidative rerspiration. Evolution of sexual reproduction. Meiosis and cell sexual cycle. Cost and benefit of sexual reproduction. Gamete formation and hormonal control of sexual reproduction (mammals in particular). Adaptive significance of sexual reproduction : sexual selection and parental investment.
4. Genetic. Mendel and the gene idea. Mendelian genetic and its extension. Chromosomal bases of inheritance: morgan experiments. Linked genes and the mapping of genes. Sex chromosomes and inheritance of related genes. Chromosomal determination of sex . Human genetic. Molecular bases of inheritance and gene expression: from genes to proteins.Regulation of gene expression in prokaryotic cells (the operon) and eukaryotic cell.
5. Mechanisms of evolution. Darwinian theory the past and the modern synthesis(neo-darwinian theory) Hardy-weinberg principle and microevolutionary processess. Macroevolution. the origin of secies and higher taxa. Human evolution. Primate evolution : hominids , the genus Homo and brain evolution.
6. Behavioral Biology: proximate and ultimate causes . Instinct and learning: nature vs nurture debate. Genes and behavior. Understanding hormonal regulation of behavior. Social behavior . Basic understanding of Evolutionary psychobiology and Darwinian Medicine
Molecular basis of genetic information. Composition and structure of nucleic acids. Chromatine, chromosomes and genes. DNA replication, DNA recombination, DNA damage and mutation, DNA repair. Types of RNA involved in protein synthesis: structures and functions. RNA transcription: enzymatic machinery and processes. Post transcriptional maturation of the eukaryotic mRNA. Genetic code and its properties. Protein synthesis: enzymatic machinery and processes. Molecular biology techniques: DNA isolation, DNA gel electrophoresis, DNA sequencing, PCR reaction.
BASIC THECNIQUES OF BIOMEDICAL LABORATORY
• Brief historical overview of medicine, in particular of laboratory medicine
• Reference legislation for the development and definition of the functions and responsibilities of the health professions in Italy.
• Contents of the Code of Ethics and of the specific professional profile.
• Pre-analytical semeiotics and the causes of pre-analytical error.
• Semeiotics II: Analytical variability, instrumental analytics (principles of colorimetry, photometry and spectrophotometry).
• Quality control (internal and external)
• The instrumental calibration of quantitative and qualitative methods.
APPLIED BIOLOGY: there are numerous excellent Biology English book. See the italian versions of those suggested by the professor.
MOLECULAR BIOLOGY:"Fondamenti di biologia molecolare"
di Lizabeth A. Allison
TECNICHE LABORATORIO BIOMEDICO: Luigi Spandrio "Principi e tecniche di chimica clinica" Edizione Piccin-Nuova Libraria
Widman “Interpretazione clinica degli esami di laboratorio” Edizione italiana Giancarlo Gazzola, Renata Franchi-Gazzola, Valeria dall’Asta, Ovidio Bussolati e Roberto Sala.
A.Cuneo, A. Rigolin “Trattato italiano di medicina di laboratorio” Piccin Editore.
Filippo Pasquinelli “Diagnostica e tecniche di laboratorio” Rosini Editrice.
he course will be held with oral lectures and will make use of multimedia systems(i.e. Power point and video presentation) The course will be held through lectures to students either in front of the classroom (“in presence”) or in synchronous-streaming on Teams platform (internet telepresence technology ) During the lessons, students will have the opportunity to discuss the key aspects of the course. The teachers will be available throughout the duration of the course to answer questions and support students during their training with individual meetings by appointment. Lectures will be supported by slide presentations, which will be available to students on Elly platform.
Assessment methods and criteria