Biochemistry (BIOCH)

Course Offerings

BIOCH-295 Independent Study

Fall and Spring. Credits: 1 - 4

Independent work in biochemistry can be conducted with any member of the biochemistry committee and, upon approval, also with other members of the biological sciences and chemistry departments and program in neuroscience and behavior.

The department
Instructor permission required.
Notes: Students conducting an independent lab research project for credit in a department, program, or lab covered by the College's chemical hygiene plan must participate in a safety training session before beginning research.

BIOCH-311 Protein Biochemistry and Cellular Metabolism

Fall. Credits: 4

This course is a rigorous introduction to the study of protein molecules and their role as catalysts in the cell. Topics include general principles of protein folding, protein structure-function correlation, enzyme kinetics and mechanism, carbohydrate and lipid biochemistry, and metabolic pathways (catabolic and anabolic) and their interaction and cross-regulation. Biological transformation of energy is considered in light of the principles of thermodynamics.

Crosslisted as: BIOL-311, CHEM-311
Applies to requirement(s): Math Sciences
K. Berry
Restrictions: This course is limited to Biochemistry majors only.
Prereq: BIOL-230 (or BIOL-210) and CHEM-302. Coreq: BIOCH-318.

BIOCH-312 Chemistry of Biomolecules

Fall. Credits: 4

An examination of the major ideas of biochemistry from the point of view of the chemical sciences rather than the life sciences. The focus will be on structure and reactivity of important biomolecules and the role of energetics and reaction dynamics in biochemical processes. Major metabolic pathways are covered, including those of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids.

Crosslisted as: CHEM-312
Applies to requirement(s): Math Sciences
K. McMenimen
Prereq: CHEM-302.
Advisory: This course is NOT intended for biochemistry majors, who must take BIOCH-311 and BIOCH-314. BIOCH-312 students may take BIOCH-318 concurrently.

BIOCH-314 Nucleic Acids Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Spring. Credits: 4

This course is an in-depth examination of DNA and RNA structures and how these structures support their respective functions during replication, transcription, and translation of the genetic material. Emphasis is on the detailed mechanisms associated with each step of gene expression. Discussions incorporate many recent advances brought about by recombinant DNA technology.

Crosslisted as: BIOL-314, CHEM-314
Applies to requirement(s): Math Sciences
K. Berry
Restrictions: This course is limited to Biochemistry majors only.
Prereq: BIOCH-311. Coreq: BIOCH-314L.

BIOCH-318 Laboratory Techniques in Protein Biochemistry

Fall. Credits: 1

This course covers fundamental laboratory techniques in protein biochemistry and data analysis. The aims of this course are: 1) to provide students with practical knowledge and hands-on experience with some of the most common experimental methods used in biochemical research, and 2) to develop the skills in written and oral scientific communication. The course focuses on protein overexpression and purification and also includes reagent preparation, proper use of instrumentation, SDS-PAGE gel analysis, enzyme activity assays, protein structure viewing, experimental design and utilizing computers to analyze and present data. Laboratory safety is also emphasized.

Applies to requirement(s): Meets No Distribution Requirement
K. Berry, K. McMenimen
Coreq: BIOCH-311 students must co-enroll in this lab course. CHEM-312/BIOCH-312 students may co-enroll.

BIOCH-330 Topics in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

This course each year examines a number of important and exciting topics in biochemistry, molecular biology, and other related fields of biology. The intellectual and research development that formulated these fundamental concepts is traced through extensive readings of the primary literature. Discussions emphasize the critical evaluation of experimental techniques, data analysis, and interpretation. This is a seminar-style course in which students will bear responsibility for the synthesis and presentation of assigned papers; substantial student participation in the form of oral presentation is expected.

BIOCH-330MB Topics in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

This course each year examines a number of important and exciting topics in biochemistry, molecular biology, and other related fields of biology. The intellectual and research development that formulated these fundamental concepts is traced through extensive readings of the primary literature. Discussions emphasize the critical evaluation of experimental techniques, data analysis, and interpretation. Substantial student participation in the form of oral presentation is expected. This course will focus on antibiotic resistance and the emergence of drug-resistant bacteria.

Applies to requirement(s): Meets No Distribution Requirement
K. McMenimen
Prereq: CHEM-212 and either BIOCH-311 or BIOCH-314.

BIOCH-330RN Topics in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology: 'The RNA World: The Origin of Life to Modern Cells'

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

RNA is believed by many to have been the first macromolecule to evolve. In a hypothesized "RNA world," RNA would have simultaneously served the roles of carrying genetic information and catalyzing chemical reactions within early cells. The past three decades have been a renaissance for RNA biology, as researchers have uncovered the critical role RNA plays in eukaryotic and bacterial gene regulation and defense, as well as the potential for RNAs to perform catalysis. This seminar will introduce students to modern approaches to study the structure and function of RNA and will explore the chemical and biological roles RNA plays in modern cells as well as its role in the origin of life.

Applies to requirement(s): Math Sciences
Other Attribute(s): Speaking-Intensive
K. Berry
Prereq: BIOCH-311, or BIOCH-314, or CHEM-212.

BIOCH-395 Independent Study

Fall and Spring. Credits: 1 - 8

Independent work in biochemistry can be conducted with any member of the biochemistry committee and, upon approval, also with other members of the biological sciences and chemistry departments and program in neuroscience and behavior.

The department
Instructor permission required.
Notes: See safety training restrictions in the course description for Biochemistry 295