BI1MB2-Metabolic Biochemistry

Module Provider: School of Biological Sciences
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites: A Level Biology and GCSE Mathematics
Modules excluded: BI1BAB2 Metabolic and Practical Biochemistry
Module version for: 2017/8

Module Convenor: Dr Craig Hughes


Summary module description:
This module provides basic background information on metabolic pathways and enzyme kinetics. Lectures are the same as for the 20 credit BI1BAB2 Metabolic and Practical Biochemistry module but there is a reduced practical component.

This module aims to provide the student with an overview of metabolic pathways and an understanding of the ways in which metabolic processes are regulated. The associated practical work aims to give hands-on experience of enzyme assays at the laboratory bench. Associated data handling aims to provide tuition in handling calculations essential for basic enzyme analysis.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module it is expected that the student will be able to: • Describe basic metabolic pathways, anabolic and catabolic • Use enzyme kinetics to evaluate enzyme activities and their regulation • Describe the principles of metabolic regulation  • Apply knowledge of enzyme kinetics during practical sessions

Additional outcomes:
Students will gain practical experience of some simple biochemical enzyme assay techniques and develop an ability to work in the laboratory as a member of a small team.

Outline content:

his module will provide a fundamental understanding of metabolic processes in cells. The key pathways will be presented, the function of enzymes will be addressed and the manner in which biochemical processes are controlled will be highlighted. In addition, practical methods for assay of enzymes will be carried out at the laboratory bench, and data handling tuition provided. The module is designed to provide essential background on biochemical metabolic pathways that will enable students to comprehend biochemistry-related modules encountered later in their course. The Lecture Content covers: • The structure and function of enzymes • Basic enzyme kinetics • Control of enzyme activity and hormonal control of metabolism • Carbohydrate and fatty acid metabolism • Lipoproteins and cholesterol metabolism • Amino acid metabolism • Integration of metabolism  • Genetically-determined inborn errors of metabolism • Environmental influences on metabolism The Practical Content covers: • Determination of Km and Vmax of an enzyme • Tuition/guidance for calculations and writing reports

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
There will be two 50 minute lectures (divided by a short break) each week of the term (20 lectures in total). Students will each attend one 2-hour practical class, and one 2-hour seminar to provide tuition with calculations and report writing.

Students will spend 2 hours performing experiments in the laboratory. They will submit one practical report for assessment and will be expected to use their free time to engage in background reading.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Seminars 2
Practicals classes and workshops 2
Guided independent study 76
Total hours by term 100.00
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 80
Report 20

Other information on summative assessment:

Late arrivals may not be allowed to join practicals for reasons of safety.

Formative assessment methods:

During the practical calculation session students will have the oppurtunity to receive feedback on their data and calculations. There will also be an end of year practice MCQ to help students prepare for their exams.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    One-and-a half-hour examination

    Requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Aug-Sept re-examination

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

    1) Required text books: Biochemistry textbooks are available in the library or to purchase ~£40 2) Specialist equipment or materials: N/A 3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear: In compliance with the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) 1992 Act, while studying this module students will be expected to wear a lab coat. The Department/School can provide students with this/these at a cost of £1 (hire per session) and £12 (to purchase). Students who choose not to purchase from the University must ensure that that their PPE meets the latest British/European Safety Standards. 4) Printing and binding: N/A 5) Computers and devices with a particular specification: N/A 6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence: N/A

    Last updated: 31 March 2017

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