Biological sciences
Study-unit Code
In all curricula
Lorena Urbanelli
  • Lorena Urbanelli
  • 56 ore - Lorena Urbanelli
Course Regulation
Coorte 2020
Learning activities
Discipline biomolecolari
Academic discipline
Type of study-unit
Obbligatorio (Required)
Type of learning activities
Attività formativa monodisciplinare
Language of instruction
The aim of the course is to illustrate students the structure/activity relation of the main classes of biological macromolecules (protein, carbohydrates, lipids), with a focus on the structure/activity relation of proteins as enzymes and transporters. Further, the course will introduce cellular energy metabolism and will outline the main catabolic routes for the energetic use of carbohydrates, lipids and amino acids
Reference texts
Nelson, M.M.Cox, Lehninger Principles of Biochemistry, Ed. Macmillan
Educational objectives
Students will acquire knowledge on the structure/function relation of the main classes of biological macromolecules (protein, carbohydrates, lipids), and in detail on the structure/function relation of proteins, with a focus on specific examples, such as enzymes and transport proteins. Further, students will acquire knowledge on cell energy metabolism and on the main features of energy macromolecule catabolism (carbohydrates, lipids, aminoacids). A central goal is understanding the main structural and functional features of the cell chemical constituents of the living matter and the main characteristics allowing the energetic use of biological constituents.
A prerequisite of the course are basic notions of General Biology (eukaryotic and prokaryotic cell organization), of General Chemistry (chemical bonds, pH and solutions, redox reactions) and of on Organic Chemistry (properties of the main functional groups of the carbon chemistry).
Teaching methods
The course is based on i) lessons with slides, ii) video on specific lesson topics, iii) test with multiple choice and open questions on course topics, iv) simulation of the written test.
Other information
For the teaching calendar (lessons date, time and place), please check the Biological Sciences degree website in dcbb.unipg.it
Learning verification modality
The final examination will consist in a written test on all topics (90 min, 40 questions with multiple answers) to assess the basic comprehension of the course topics and an oral examination for students with a sufficient evaluation in it (18/30), in order to discuss the critical points emerged.
Students that will not reach a sufficient evaluation in the written part (18/30) may discuss the critical points during the oral examination or with the teacher by appointment
Should exam face-to-face not allowed, final examination will be carried out via an online platform in agreement with the University regulation
Students with disabilities or DSA may consult the webpage www.unipg.it/disabilita-e-dsa
Extended program
Aminoacids. Structure and function of proteins: primary, secondary, tertiary, and quaternary structure, denaturation. Proteins with transport functions: myoglobin, haemoglobin, antibodies. Enzymes: biological catalysis, kinetics and inhibitors. Regulation of enzymatic activity. Lipids: energy reservoir and structural constituents. Biological membranes. Carbohydrates: monosaccharydes, oligosaccharides, polysaccharides. Introduction to metabolism: bioenergy storage and biological reduction reactions. Glycolysis, Krebs cycle. The electron transport chain and oxidative phosphorylation. Lipids and aminoacids as energy sources: the beta-oxidation of lipids, glucogenic and chetogenic aminoacids. Deamination of aminoacids and the urea cycle. Gluconeogenesis and biosynthesis of carbohydrates.
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