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Medical Biochemistry, MSBS 5020S

Course Director:  Dr. Emine Abali

Dept. of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology


Course Description:
Students will learn the chemistry, function and features of building blocks of life such as amino acids, lipids and carbohydrates. Students will learn the pathways involved in energy metabolism, biosynthesis, and catabolism of carbohydrates, lipids, nucleotides, proteins and amino acids. Major emphasis will be on the integration of metabolic pathways in the major organs and tissues through hormonal regulation, in both health and disease. Students will also critically evaluate basic and clinical research in the field.

Students must demonstrate knowledge about established and evolving basic and clinical biomedical sciences, including epidemiology and social/behavioral sciences, & their application of this knowledge to patient care.
Students will:
Compare and contrast features of the chemistry of amino acids, and how they function as the building blocks of proteins.
Summarize features of protein structure and function (as enzymes and for structural purposes).
Describe the chemistry of nucleotides, and how they function as the building blocks of nucleic acids.
Integrate the metabolism of glucose and its utilization as an energy source, with the metabolism of other carbohydrates, both simple and complex, and with the metabolism of amino acids and lipids, in both health and disease.
Integrate aspects of the structure and function of the mitochondrion with its role in energy metabolism and in specific pathologies in humans.
Integrate the metabolism of amino acids, nucleotides, and other nitrogen-containing compounds, and with the metabolism of carbohydrates and lipids, in both health and disease.
Describe the structure and metabolism of fatty acids, triacylglycerols, phospholipids, glycolipids, and sterols.
Integrate the metabolism of lipids as energy sources, in membrane structure and function, hormone signaling, and with the metabolism of carbohydrates and amino acids, in both health and disease.
Integrate hormonal control of carbohydrate and fatty acid/lipid metabolism by the principal signaling hormones insulin and glucagon, with local allosteric regulators.
Compare and contrast the structure and function of lipoproteins and their roles in normal and specific disease states.
Integrate the above regulation into the context of organelles, organs, organ systems, life styles and treatment modalities.
Integrate additional specific topics relating to human health and disease for which a substantial component of their understanding is found at the level of the roles of biomolecules (examples include but are not limited to sickle cell anemia, diabetes, cystic fibrosis, glycogen storage disease, atherosclerosis, leukemia, and in general clinical diagnosis).
Demonstrate skills in the interpretation of contemporary biochemical data on each of the major classes of biomolecules, that is also pertinent to the practice of clinical medicine and research into human health and disease.