Course Descriptions

Biochem 423 – General Biochemistry I


Structure and function of biological molecules, especially proteins, lipids and carbohydrates. Important concepts include bioenergetics, biological catalysis, and metabolic pathways as interacting regulated systems. Prerequisites:  BIOCHEM 275 with a grade of 'B-' or better, AND CHEM 261 and CHEM 262 with a grade of C- or better.   VIDEO

Biochem 424 – General Biochemistry II


An integrated presentation of the biochemistry and molecular biology of cellular interactions. Emphasis on accounting for complex cellular processes in terms of protein structure and regulation of gene expression. Topics include gene structures and techniques for studying them; replication; control of gene expression; post-translational processing; membrane associated energetics; behavior of transport systems; mechanisms of signal transduction; and interactions of cells with extracellular matrix and with other cells. Prerequisite: BIOCHEM 275 with a grade of 'B-' or better AND BIOCHEM 423 with C- or better.

Biochem 426 – General Biochemistry Lab for Majors


Modern techniques in experimental biochemistry and molecular biology. Experiments include enzymology, protein purification, and gene expression and organization. Methods include spectrophotometry, polymerase chain reaction, DNA cloning, electrophoresis, protein detection by immunoblot, RNA hybridization, and computer analysis of DNA and protein sequence data. Manipulation of animal, plant, yeast, and bacterial systems. Fulfills second part of Junior Year Writing requirement (first part is BIOCHEM 430H). This class is open to Biochemistry & Molecular Biology majors only. Prerequisites: Completion of the CW General Education requirements; BIOCHEM 275 with a grade of B- or better; and BIOCHEM 276  with a grade of C- or better. Previous or concurrent enrollment in BIOCHEM 423.

Biochem 623 – Advanced General Biochemistry

Advanced treatment of selected topics in biochemistry, with readings taken from the current literature. Emphasis on experimental approaches and problem solving. Topics include protein structure-function, protein folding and modification, enzyme kinetics, and the study of metabolic processes (pathways and their regulation) with a molecular genetic approach. Students enrolled in this course are expected to have taken at least a one-semester course in upper division biochemistry and BIOCHEM 642.

Biochem 642 – Advanced Molecular Biology

Structure, biosynthesis, and function of nucleic acids and the translational apparatus. DNA replication; gene organization; chromatin structure; RNA transcription, regulation of gene expression; protein biosynthesis; mRNA, tRNA, and ribosomes.  For PhD students only.

Biochem 657 – Drug Design

This course will survey the current picture in pharmaceutical research, including how targets are selected, how the rational and combinatorial methods are harnessed, as well as how the industry is evolving in the post-genomic era. The instructors will provide background and introduce various topics, which will be discussed by a series of invited lecturers who are active in drug design and discovery. Prerequisites: One BIOCHEM class and one year of Organic Chemistry required.

Biochem 691B - ST-Signal Transduction and Development

Current research from the fields of Plant Cell and Molecular Biology, Genetics and Development.