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Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology, Unit Catalogue 2008/09

PA10236 Molecular and cell biology

Credits: 12
Level: Certificate
Academic Year
Assessment: EX 100%
This unit is only available to students with an A level in Chemistry at grade A or B, or equivalent. Aims: To introduce the student to the organisation of procaryotic and eucaryotic cells, and to provide a chemical approach to study the structure and function of cell components including amino acids, peptides and proteins, carbohydrates and lipids. To provide a chemical approach to study the structure and function of nucleic acids and their role in protein synthesis. To introduce the basic theory and practice of microbiology.
Learning Outcomes:
At the end of the unit the student should be able to describe the properties of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids and their building blocks and to present the rationale for how such macromolecules maintain their in vivo structures and functions; demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the structure and functions of nucleic acids and their role in protein synthesis; demonstrate knowledge and understanding of prokaryotic cell structure and function to support future studies of infections, infectious diseases and their treatment, and to carry out basic practical techniques in microbiology competently and safely.

* Working with others (T/F)
* Study skills, problem solving (T/F)
* Handling information (T/F)
* Scientific and practical skills (T/F).
An outline of cellular organisation, structure and function of major organelles and membranes in procaryotic and eucaryotic cells. Structure, classification, biosynthetic origins and biochemical roles of amino acids. The nature of the peptide bond and the forces which maintain primary, secondary, tertiary and quaternary structure of proteins. Protein function, reactive groups, enzymes and catalysis, allostery, protein fractionation. The structure of relevant carbohydrates and lipids, and the biological role of these molecules in energy metabolism. Structure and organisation of DNA and RNA; Nucleotide synthesis, DNA replication, RNA transcription, protein synthesis. Introduction to microbiology: basic nomenclature, Gram-positive and -negative envelopes, peptidoglycan, endospores, microbial nutrition. Introduction to viruses. Practical microbiology.