Chemical sciences
Study-unit Code
In all curricula
Paola Belanzoni
  • Paola Belanzoni
  • 42 ore - Paola Belanzoni
Course Regulation
Coorte 2021
Learning activities
Attività formative affini o integrative
Academic discipline
Type of study-unit
Opzionale (Optional)
Type of learning activities
Attività formativa monodisciplinare
Language of instruction
Introduction to bioinorganic chemistry. Principles of coordination chemistry. Properties of biological properties. Choice, control and utilization of metal-ion concentration in cells. Interactions of metal ions with biomolecules. Biological functions of metalloproteins. Metalloenzymes and their reaction mechanisms.
Reference texts
S.J. Lippard, J.M. Berg "Principles of bioinorganic chemistry" University Science Books, Mill Valley, California
R.M. Roat-Malone "Bioinorganic chemistry - A short course" Wiley-Interscience, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey
Educational objectives
The main objective of the course is to acquire essential knowledge to understand the metal role in biological systems and the chemical processes involving metals.
In order to understand and tackle the course basic notions of inorganic chemistry and biology should be already acquired.
Teaching methods
Face-to-face lectures on all subjects of the course held with the help of slides. Students are invited to attend the lectures and to take notes since the existing textbooks are too much comprehensive and fragmented and the latter should be used only as possible further deepen of the topics covered in the lectures. Slides of the lectures will be made available to students.
Learning verification modality
The exam consists of an oral test which is an interview of about 40 minutes.
Extended program
Introduction to the inorganic chemistry role in biological processes. Essential chemical elements in biology. Principles of coordination chemistry related to bioinorganic: thermodynamic and kinetic aspects. Electronic and geometric structures of metal ions in biological systems. Properties of biological molecules: proteins and nucleic acids. Control and utilization of metal ion concentration in cells: bioavailability of metal ions, uptake strategies, specialized units in biology, beneficial and toxic effects of metal ions, generation and uses of metal ion concentration gradients. Interaction of metal ions with proteins and nucleic acids: bonding, structure, and stability. Electron transfer proteins. Long-distance electron transfer: Marcus theory. Metalloenzymes: substrate binding and activation by nonredox mechanisms. Atom- and group-transfer chemistry: dioxygen transport and storage; oxygen atom transfer reactions; protective metalloenzymes; coenzyme B-12 dependent reactions. Protein tuning of metal properties to achieve specific functions. Chlorophyll photosynthesis and artificial photosynthesis. Metals in medicine.
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