Advanced Topics in Biochemistry & Molecular Pharmacology

Chemical Biology

This course focuses on the use of chemical approaches to answer fundamental questions in biology. Topics include post-translational modifications; chemical synthesis and modification of biopolymers; combinatorial chemistry; chemical genetics; rational drug design; ligand-receptor interactions; and the fundamentals of fluorescence. 
Catalog number: BBS715
Course Coordinator: Stephen Miller
Semester Offered: Spring
Last Taught: Spring 2014

Molecular Biophysics

The goal of this course is to give students a strong foundation in physical principles that underlie the thermodynamic and mechanistic properties of biological macromolecules and macromolecular complexes. In addition to providing theoretical background, lectures and discussion groups will focus on the application of physical chemical principles in contemporary biomedical research. Topics will include spectroscopic and computational approaches to studying protein and nucleic acid structures; thermodynamics and kinetics of protein folding; the solution behavior of macromolecules; and principles that govern molecular recognition. 
Catalog number: BBS716
Course Coordinator: Jill Zitzewitz
Semester Offered: Fall
Last Taught: Fall 2014

Structural Biology

The goal of this course is to provide students with a theoretical and practical understanding of techniques used to determine the three-dimensional structures of biological macromolecules. The primary methods explored will be X-ray crystallography and Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, but alternative approaches will also be discussed. Emphasis will be placed on both structural determination and analysis of dynamics, which can be crucial for macromolecular function. 
Catalog number: BBS717
Course Coordinator: William Royer
Semester Offered: Spring, Odd Years
Last Taught: Spring 2013

Regulatory RNA Biology

This advanced topics course will cover current research in the general area of RNA Biology. Topics envisioned may include RNA synthesis, modification and processing pathways, RNA structure, RNA transport and subcellular localization, translational regulation, RNAi and microRNAs, RNA decay, RNA aptamers, RNA catalysts, RNA and early evolution, and RNA as a drug and/or drug target. The format of this course will center around group discussion of papers from the primary literature. Grading will be based on student attendance, performance in presentations and participation in group discussions.
Catalog number: BBS718
Course Coordinator: Melissa Moore
Semester Offered: Fall, Odd Years
Last Taught: Fall 2013

Advanced Topics in Bioinformatics

The Adanced Topics in Bioinformatics course covers several important areas of modern bioinformatics and computational biology. The course is aimed not only at students specializing in bioinformatics, but also general biology students who would like to utilize bioinformatics tools in their daily research. The course will begin with an overview of modern sources of bioinformatics data, including high-throughput sequencing and microarrays, followed by a thorough presentation of sequence search and alignment algorithms, and the structure of the eukaryotic genome. Next, we will introduce population genetics - spanning from molecular phylogenetics to natural selection, with an emphasis on analyzing genomic datasets. The biophysical section of the course will include discussions of protein structure and folding, as well as the physical architecture of the genome in vivo, and the relations between sequences and structures for proteins and DNA. The course will include 10 lectures, followed by work on individual or group research projects, presented in lieu of the final exam.
Catalog number: BBS741
Course Coordinator: Zhiping Weng
Semester Offered: Spring
Last Taught: Spring 2013

Molecular Genetics of Bacteria

The goal of this course is to provide students with the background needed for participation in research involving bacteria. A tutorial format is used with sessions alternating between textbook-based problem solving and the presentation/discussion of papers from current literature. The paper presentation/discussion portion of the course may be taken separately as BBS807, Current Topics in Prokaryotic Genetics. Topics to be covered include: chromosome structure, replication and segregation; mutations and genetic analysis; plasmids; conjugation; transformation; Lytic bacteriophages; Lysogenic bacteriophages; transposition and site-specific recombination; homologous recombination; DNA repair and mutagenesis; global mechanisms regulating gene expression; and strategies for molecular genetic analysis. 
Catalog number: BBS773
Course Coordinator: Anthony Poteete
Semester Offered: Spring
Last Taught: Has not been taught within past two years

Molecular Basis of Disease

The goal of this course is to introduce GSBS graduate students to the molecular understanding of disease. The course will consist of five-week blocks investigating neurodegenerative disease, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The students will then finish the course by developing a written research proposal into an important unanswered question. 
Catalog number: BBS786
Course Coordinator: Lawrence Hayward
Semester Offered: Spring
Last Taught: Spring 2014

 

Tutorials, Seminars, and Journal Clubs

Graduate Student Seminar Series 

This course provides students with the opportunity to develop skills in public speaking necessary for scientific presentations. This experience will facilitate both formal and informal presentations of students’ individual research. 
Catalog number: BBS810
Course Coordinator: William Kobertz
Semester Offered: Fall and Spring
Last Offererd: Fall 2014

Tutorial in Biochemistry

Individual instruction on selected topics is arranged by student and instructor. 
Catalog number: BBS841
Course Coordinator: William Kobertz
Semester Offered: Fall, Spring and Summer
Last Taught: Spring 2014