University of Connecticut

Molecular and Cell Biology (MCB) 2015-2016

Head of Department: Professor Michael Lynes

Department Office: Room 104, Biology/Physics Building

Major requirements

1401. Honors Core: Computational Molecular Biology

(Also offered as BME 1401, CSE 1401, and PNB 1401.) Three credits.

Introduction to research in computational biology through lectures, computer lab exercises, and mentored research projects. Topics include gene and genome structure, gene regulation, mechanisms of inheritance, biological databases, sequence alignment, motif finding, human genetics, forensic genetics, stem cell development, comparative genomics, early evolution, and modeling complex systems. CA 3.

1405. Honors Core: The Genetics Revolution in Contemporary Culture

Three credits. Prerequisite: Open only to freshmen and sophomores in the Honors Program.

Exploration of the use of genetics concepts in popular culture. Topics include genetic analysis, genetic engineering, cloning and DNA forensics as represented in media including news, film, literature and art. Discussion includes influence on society, attitudes towards science, domestic and foreign policy as well as medical practice and law. CA 3.

2000. Introduction to Biochemistry

Four credits. Three class periods and one 3-hour laboratory period. Prerequisite: CHEM 2241 or 2444. (CHEM 2444 may also be corequisite.) Not open for credit to students who have passed MCB 3010.

The structure, chemistry, and metabolism of carbohydrates, lipids and proteins. Enzyme function and kinetics, energy metabolism, and structure and function of nucleic acids. A survey course for students of agriculture, general biology, medical technology, nursing, and pharmacy. Molecular and Cell Biology majors, biophysics majors, and other students desiring a more intensive introduction or considering advanced course work in biochemistry or molecular biology should take MCB 3010. A fee of $25 is charged for this course.

2210. Cell Biology

Three credits. Prerequisite: BIOL 1107. This course is intended to be taken before MCB 2000 or 3010.

Structural organization of cells and the molecular basis of dynamic cellular processes, with emphasis on eukaryotic cells. Topics include protein targeting, vesicle trafficking, cytoskeleton, cell-cell interactions in tissues, and the molecular basis of related human diseases.

2225. Cell Biology Laboratory

Four credits. One 1-hour lecture and two 4-hour laboratories. Prerequisite: BIOL 1107 or equivalent. Open to honors students; open to non-honors students with instructor consent.

A laboratory experience that will prepare students for thesis research in the biological sciences. Focus will be on experimental design, quantitative analysis and presentation of data. Topics include cell culture, fluorescence and time-lapse microscopy, DNA transfection, image processing, and flow cytometry. Students will also pursue independent research projects. A fee of $75 is charged for this course.

2400. Human Genetics

Three credits. Two lectures and one problem-solving case-study session. Prerequisite: BIOL 1107. Not open to students who have passed MCB 2410.

Foundational principles of classical genetics and modern genomics with a specific focus on humans. Emphasis on case studies and applications to human genetic diseases.

2410. Genetics

Three credits. Two lectures and one discussion session. Not open to students who have passed MCB 2400. Prerequisite: BIOL 1107.

Foundational principles of classical genetics and modern genomics with a specific focus on eukaryotic model genetic organisms. Emphasis on molecular mechanisms underlying heredity. Intended for majors in Molecular and Cell Biology and related disciplines.

2610. Fundamentals of Microbiology

Four credits. Three lecture periods and one 2½-hour laboratory period. Prerequisite or corequisite: CHEM 2241 or 2443. Recommended preparation: BIOL 1107 or equivalent.

Biology of microorganisms, especially bacteria. Cellular structure, physiology, genetics, and interactions with higher forms of life. Laboratory familiarizes students with methodology of microbiology and aseptic techniques. A fee of $30 is charged for this course.

3007. Introduction to Biophysical Chemistry

Three credits. Prerequisite: CHEM 2443; MATH 1132Q; PHYS 1202Q, 1402Q or 1602Q or instructor consent.

Energetics and kinetics of metabolic reactions. Interactions of electromagnetic radiation and biological macromolecules. Formation and energetics of supramolecular structures. The basis of selected techniques of molecular biology, such as DNA hybridization, radioimmune assays. DNA melting and thermal transitions in polymers, thermodynamics, analysis of reactions, binding theory, cooperative interactions.

3010. Biochemistry

Five credits. Four class periods and one 3-hour laboratory. Prerequisite or corequisite: CHEM 2444. Recommended preparation: MCB 2210 or MCB 2610. Not open for credit to students who have passed MCB 2000.

The structure and function of biological macromolecules. The metabolism of carbohydrates, lipids, amino acids, proteins and nucleic acids. The regulation of metabolism and biosynthesis of biological macromolecules. An in-depth introduction intended for students planning to take advanced course work in biochemistry, biophysics, or other areas of molecular biology. A fee of $75 is charged for this course.

3011. Human Metabolism and Disease

Two credits. Prerequisite: MCB 2000 or 3010 or instructor consent.

A thorough analysis of the inter-relationships of metabolic pathways in connection with human health and disease, including inherited metabolic diseases and the role of hormones in metabolic pathways.

3022W. Human Disease and the Development of Therapeutic Agents

Three credits. Prerequisite: ENGL 1010 or 1011 or 2011. Recommended preparation: One 2000-level course in MCB.

Molecular basis of human disease and strategies for developing therapeutic treatments. Applications of genetic, cellular, and biochemical information in treating disease states. Especially appropriate for students interested in biomedical research and the health profession.

3100. Introduction to Translational Research

Three credits. One 2-hour lecture on Storrs campus and one 4-hour work period in hospital. Prerequisite: BIOL 1107; open to juniors or higher; open to honors students; open to non-honors students with instructor consent. Recommended preparation: MCB 2000, 2210, 2610, or 3010.

Basic science and design of human subject research; participation in clinical, patient-oriented research projects in a hospital setting.

3189. Clinical Research Laboratory

Three credits. Prerequisite: MCB 3100. May be repeated for credit.

Participation in a clinical research study at a medical center (transportation to this off-campus site to be arranged by the student.)

3201. Gene Expression

(Formerly offered as MCB 2211.) Three credits. Recommended preparation: MCB 2000, 2210, 2400, 2410, or 3010.

Basic mechanisms of genetic information transfer in eukaryotic cells from DNA to folded and assembled proteins. Regulation of transcription, translation, DNA replication, and the cell cycle.

3210. Molecular Endocrinology

(Also offered as PNB 3270.) Three credits. Prerequisite: BIOL 1107; open to juniors and seniors only. Recommended preparation: PNB 3262.

Molecular mechanism(s) of hormone action in vertebrates and invertebrates. Molecular and genetic characterization of hormones, receptors, and signal transduction, and hormone actions at the molecular, cellular, and organismal levels. Includes student presentations on selected papers.

3211. Cancer Cell Biology and Genetics

Three credits. Prerequisite: MCB 2210; recommended preparation: MCB 2400 or 2410.

Genetics and epigenetics of cancer cells. Cellular signaling and growth control. The role of oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes in regulating cancer cell proliferation and death. DNA damage and repair mechanisms. Carcinogen activation detoxification. General and targeted approaches to cancer therapy.

3219. Developmental and Regenerative Biology

(Formerly offered as MCB 4219.) Three credits. Prerequisite: BIOL 1107. Recommended preparation: MCB 2210 and 2400 or 2410, which may be taken concurrently.

Fundamental principles that govern animal embryonic development and regeneration with emphasis on the cellular and molecular basis of pattern formation and cell differentiation in a variety of model organisms. Relevance to human development and disease and therapeutic applications will be discussed.

3246. Virology

Three credits. Prerequisite: MCB 2610 and MCB 2210. Recommended preparation: MCB 3201 or 3010.

Biological, biochemical, physical, and genetic characteristics of viruses, with an emphasis on molecular and quantitative aspects of virus-cell interactions.

3412. Genetic Engineering and Functional Genomics

Three credits. Prerequisite: MCB 2400 or 2410. Recommended preparation: MCB 2000 or 3010.

Methods and applications of genetic engineering, including gene manipulation and transfer techniques in prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Emphasis on applications of recombinant DNA technology in the elucidation of gene function. Consideration of recent technological developments in molecular genetics, such as cloning, gene therapy, the patenting and release of genetically engineered organisms, and societal issues related to these developments.

3413. Concepts of Genetic Analysis

Four credits. Two class periods and 3-hour laboratory. Prerequisite: MCB 2410 or 2400.

Survey of genetic theory and applications of genetic analysis to model organisms including animals, plants, and microbes. A fee of $50 is charged for this course.

3414. Experiments in DNA Identification

Two credits. One 50-minute lecture period and one 3-hour laboratory session. Prerequisite: MCB 2410.

An introductory laboratory course in principles and techniques of DNA manipulation and identification. Course simulates independent research, using modern molecular genetics techniques. A fee of $20 is charged for this course.

3421. Introduction to Molecular Evolution and Bioinformatics

Three credits. Recommended preparation: At least one 2000-level course in MCB.

Evolution of biomolecules, and application to molecular data analysis and the design of new molecules. Topics include prebiotic chemistry, origin of cells, selfish genes, molecular innovations, data bank searches, alignment of sequence and 3-D protein structures. Course includes lectures, discussions and computer lab exercises.

3601. Physiology of Archaea and Bacteria

Three credits. Prerequisite: MCB 2000, 2610 or 3010.

Examination of biochemical energy generation, regulation of metabolism, and cellular structures of archaea and bacteria. Physiological processes as they occur in nature and the biotechnology industry. Analysis of microbial genome sequences using computational methods.

3602W. Introduction to Bioinformatic Tools for Microbial Genome Annotation

One credit. One 2-hour computer lab period. Prerequisite: MCB 2000 or 2610 or 3010; ENGL 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

Analysis of microbial genome sequences using computational tools to examine metabolic pathways and genetic features as they relate to an organism’s lifestyle. Writing assignments utilize information gathered from the relevant scientific literature and students’ analyses of genome-derived information.

3617. Molecular Biology and Genetics of Prokaryotes

Four credits. Three lecture periods and one 2-hour discussion. Prerequisite: MCB 2610.

Molecular genetics of bacteria, archaebacteria, and their viruses. Transcription and replication of DNA, transformation, transduction, conjugation, genetic mapping, mutagenesis, regulation of gene expression, and genome organization.

3633. Pathogenic Microbiology

Four credits. Two class periods and one 2-hour, 45 minute laboratory period. Prerequisite: MCB 2610.

Descriptions of infectious diseases caused by bacteria, viruses, and protozoans in relation to the affected human organ systems and discussions of the underlying virulence factors, molecular mechanisms, and epidemiological data. Modern techniques are used in the laboratory to identify and characterize pathogenic bacteria. A fee of $75 is charged for this course.

3635. Applied Microbiology

Three credits. Prerequisite: MCB 2610. Recommended preparation: MCB 2000 or 3010.

A study of the biology, physiology, and genetics of microorganisms useful in industry, agriculture, and selected environmental processes.

3636. Marine Microbiology

(Also offered as MARN 3016.) First semester (Avery Point) second semester (Storrs). Three credits. Two lecture-discussion class periods and one 2-hour laboratory period for which field trips may be substituted. Prerequisite: MCB 2610 or instructor consent.

A general survey of the taxonomy, physiology, and ecology of marine microorganisms.

3841W. Research Literature in Molecular and Cell Biology

Three credits. Prerequisite: ENGL 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open only with consent of instructor. Recommended preparation: one 2000-level course in MCB. With a change in content, may be repeated for credit.

Discussion of current research in molecular and cell biology.

3895. Special Topics

Credits and hours by arrangement. With a change in content, may be repeated for credit. Prerequisites and recommended preparation vary.

3898. Variable Topics

Three credits. With a change of topic, may be repeated for credit. Prerequisites and recommended preparation vary.

3899. Independent Study

Credits and hours by arrangement. Prerequisite: Open only with consent of instructor. May be repeated for credit with change in topic.

Designed for the advanced undergraduate student who is pursuing a special problem as an introduction to independent investigation.

3989. Introduction to Research

Credits and hours by arrangement. Prerequisite: Open with consent of instructor. May be repeated for credit with change in topic.

Laboratory research project carried on by the student under the guidance of a faculty member. The student is required to submit a brief report on the research findings at the end of the semester.

3996W. Research Thesis in Molecular and Cell Biology

Three credits. Hours by arrangement. Prerequisite: At least three credits of MCB 3989 or 4989, which may be taken concurrently; ENGL 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open with consent of instructor.

Writing of a thesis based upon the student’s independent laboratory research project.

4008. Techniques of Biophysical Chemistry

Three credits. Prerequisite: MCB 3007, or CHEM 3563 or instructor consent.

Theory and applications of biophysical methods for the analysis of the size, shape and interactions of proteins and nucleic acids. Topics include analytical ultracentrifugation, light scattering, X-ray scattering, calorimetry, surface plasmon resonance and single molecule approaches.

4009. Structure and Function of Biological Macromolecules

Three credits. Prerequisite or corequisite: MCB 2000 or 3010 or instructor consent.

Fundamentals of protein structure and the forces that stabilize structure. Topics include recurrent structural motifs, molecular ancestry/homology, evolution of protein structure, structure-function correlations, and the structural basis of regulation. Discussion of the techniques used to investigate structure, including X-ray diffraction, NMR, TEM, AFM, structure prediction, and computational simulations. Advanced topics may include chaperones, structural genomics and the roles of misfolded proteins in disease.

4026W. Advanced Biochemistry Laboratory

Four credits. One 1-hour lecture and two 4-hour laboratories. Prerequisite: Either MCB 3010 or MCB 2000 with instructor consent; ENGL 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

Theory and application of modern techniques for separation and characterization of biological macromolecules, including several types of liquid chromatography, liquid scintillation spectro-photometry, and SDS polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Instruction in writing a scientific paper. A fee of $75 is charged for this course.

4211. Basic Immunology

(Formerly offered as MCB 3212.) Three credits. Prerequisite: BIOL 1107. Recommended preparation: MCB 2210.

An introduction to the genetic, biochemical, and cellular mechanisms of the immune system. Addresses basic aspects of immune function, and will examine abnormal immune function associated with cancer, autoimmune disease, AIDS, and other immunological abnormalities.

4416. Forensic Application of DNA Science

(Formerly offered as MCB 3416.) Three credits. Prerequisite: MCB 2400 or 2410.

DNA analysis in forensic science, with emphasis on molecular genetic technology in criminal investigations and issues surrounding the use of DNA evidence. Team-taught with forensic practitioners.

4601. Physiology of Archaea and Bacteria

(Formerly offered as MCB 3601.) Three credits. Prerequisite: MCB 2000, 2610 or 3010.

Examination of biochemical energy generation, regulation of metabolism, and cellular structures of archaea and bacteria. Physiological processes as they occur in nature and biotechnology industries.

4624. Experiments in Bacterial Genetics

Three credits. Two 3½-hour laboratory/lecture periods. Prerequisite: MCB 2610; open only with instructor consent. Recommended preparation: MCB 3617.

Experiments in bacterial genetics, emphasizing genetic manipulations and analyses using modern biological techniques including transposon mutagenesis, DNA isolation, PCR, DNA sequencing and phenotypic analysis. A fee of $75 is charged for this course.

4894. Undergraduate Seminar

Credits and hours by arrangement. Prerequisite: Open only with consent of instructor. May be repeated for credit with a change of topic.

4989. Introduction to Honors Research

Credits and hours by arrangement. Prerequisite: Open only to honors students with consent of instructor. May be repeated for credit with change in topic.

Laboratory research project carried on by the student under the guidance of a faculty member. The student is required to submit a brief report on the research findings at the end of the semester.

4997W. Honors Research Thesis in Molecular and Cell Biology

Three credits. Hours by arrangement. Prerequisite: At least three credits of MCB 3989 or 4989, which may be taken concurrently; ENGL 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open only to honors students; open only with instructor consent.

Writing of a thesis based upon a student’s independent laboratory research project.

 

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