FB1BFN-Fundamental Biochemistry in Food and Nutrition

Module Provider: Food and Nutritional Sciences
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Dr Gunter Kuhnle

Email: g.g.kuhnle@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:
This module serves as introduction into biochemistry for nutrition and food science students.

This module will aim to provide a sound understanding of how human biochemistry underpins medical sciences, including nutrition and food science, and how nutrients and non-nutrients impact on a cellular level. An introduction to the fundamentals of (human) biochemistry (including biomolecules, metabolic pathways, enzymology and molecular biology) will be covered, detailing the processes relevant to human health and disease and how it can be affected by diet. Specific examples of how nutrients impact on these systems will form the fundamental basis of all nutrition and food-science related topics in Parts 2 and 3. In this course, students will learn about:
•Fundamentals concepts in human and food biochemistry, including biomolecular structures, metabolic pathways, enzymology and molecular biology.
Rationale: Biochemistry is the basis of all life and a sound understanding of these processes is crucial for to understand all other physiological processes. Structural biochemistry is important to understand the function and behaviour of major food components.
•Nutritional requirements for growth and maintenance.
Rationale: Fundamentally, macro-and micro-nutrients impact on the growth and maintenance of the human body from birth through to old age. An understanding of such actions is critical as a foundation to topics dealing with malnutrition and over-nutrition.
•Macro- and micro-nutrient requirements within the context of each biochemical system within the body, including that of the brain, circulatory system, bone, heart, liver etc.
Rationale: The impact of specific nutrients on the functioning of each biochemical system at the cell or organ level is necessary prior to an understanding of how over or under supply of such nutrients effect influences health and disease (Parts 2 and 3).
•Fundamental research skills: including laboratory skills, literature searches will also be provided as part of this module.

Assessable learning outcomes:
On completion of the module, students will have gained an understanding of the fundamentals of human and food biochemistry, physiology and nutrition. Students will be able to describe the function of the specialist organs in the body and have some understanding of the importance of nutrition to these systems. They will also be familiar with the structure of biomolecules, metabolic pathways, concepts of enzymology and molecular biology. Furthermore, students should be able to complete basic laboratory tasks relevant to food science, nutrition and physiology.

Additional outcomes:
Students will learn how to assess and interpret scientific evidence.

Outline content:
This module provides the fundamental background to understand biochemistry and nutrition. The following topics will be covered: Structural biochemistry (proteins, lipids, carbohydrates), metabolic pathways, enzymology, molecular biology, immune system and cell signaling.

Global context:
Nutrition is an applied health science, as such an understanding of how the body works and the influence and importance of nutrients maintaining this system is essential to the nutrition scientist. Food science is underpinned by a knowledge of the biochemistry of major components.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The course will be delivered using a mixture of teaching and learning techniques, in particular lectures and enquiry-based learning, as well as laboratory work.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20 20
Practicals classes and workshops 10 10
Guided independent study 70 70
Total hours by term 100.00 100.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 50
Report 30
Set exercise 20

Other information on summative assessment:
Practical reports will be a combination of Blackboard reports and written reports.

Formative assessment methods:

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: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    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:
    Written examination during summer term

    Requirements for a pass:
    40% in EACH INDIVIDUAL assignment (coursework AND exam)

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Resubmission of coursework during resit period. Re-examination during resit period

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 21 December 2016

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