The course aims to provide a preparation of general chemistry, organic and inorganic, and biochemistry for an adequate understanding of the structure and function of biological molecules and the meaning of the main metabolic events. Students will learn a general knowledge on the molecular basis of life, from the fundamental chemical properties of the substances, the structure and function of macromolecules, both at the cellular and extracellular level, the metabolic transformations of biomolecules required by the human body function. In addition, the student will understand the meaning of key metabolic pathways in different physiological and pathological contexts.
CHEMICAL BASES AND MOLECULAR ORGANIZATION OF LIFE
Proteins: proteins structural organization; regulation of proteins biological activity.
Nucleic Acids: Griffith, Avery, Hershey e Chase, Watson e Crick, Franklin’s experiments. Chemical structure of nucleic acids (RNA and DNA). Chromatin and chromosomes structure.
BASES OF BIOLOGICAL ORGANIZATION
Structure and function of prokaryotic cells (Bacteria and Archea): plasmatic membrane, cell wall, nucleoid.
Structure and function of eukaryotic cells: plasma membrane, nucleus, nucleolus, nucleoplasm, endoplasmic reticulum, ribosomes, Golgi apparatus, lysosomes, peroxisomes, cytoscheleton (microfilaments, microtubules, intermediate filaments).
GENE FUNCTION AND STRUCTURE
Structure of prokaryotic genes: organization of operons.
Structure of eukaryotic genes: function of promoters, exons and introns.
Semi-conservative replication. General features of DNA duplication: DNA-polymerases, topoisomerases, replication fork, Okazaki fragments, ‘proofreading activity’. Replication in bacteria. Replication in eukaryotes: telomeres replication. Mechanisms of DNA repair: repair of thymine dimers, base excision repair, nucleotide excision repair, mismatch repair.
TRANSCRIPTION AND RNA MATURATION
Central dogma of molecular biology. Structure and function of first, second and third class RNAs. General features of transcription. RNA polymerases. Transcription factors. Transcription in prokayiotes: start and termination of rho-dependent and-independent transcription. Transcription in eukaryiotes: formation of the pre-initiation complex, end of transcription. Mechanism of mRNA maturation: capping, polyA tail, splicing. rRNA and tRNA maturation.
Properties of the genetic code. Translation apparatus: structure and functions of tRNA and ribosomes. Translation initiation. Elongation. Termination. Differences among eukaryiotes and prokaryiotes. Protein folding. Proteasome-mediated protein degradation.
Functional, evolutionary and pathological meaning of mutations. Spontaneous and induced mutations. Point mutations and their classification. Triplet expansion mutations: exemples of pathologies. Chromosome mutations: classification and onset mechanisms. Exemples of patholies caused by chromosomes mutations. Polymorphisms: SNPs, VNTR, InDel. SNPs functional classification and their role in modern biomedicine.
Mendel’s experiments. The three Mendel’s laws. Chromosomal theory of heredity. Morgan’s experiments and association between genes. Concepts of dominance, recessività, incomplete dominance, co-dominance, penetrance, expressivity. Genealogic trees. Dominant autosomal characters, recessive autosomal characters, Xlinked dominand and recessive characters, Y-linked characters.
Elements of General Chemistry, both inorganic and organic.
Biochemistry and clinical implications.
De Leo e Coll, Biologia e Genetica, last edition - Ed Edises
CHEMISTRY (ENGLISH VERSIONS)
1. Principi di Chimica generale e organica - E. Santaniello, M. Alberghina, M. Coletta, S. Marini – PICCIN
2. Chimica e Propedeutica Biochimica – Bettelheim, Brown, Campbell, Farrel – EdiSES
3. Chimica generale, Chimica organica, Propedeutica biochimica – K.J. Denniston, J.J. Topping, R.L. Caret – McGraw-Hill
4. Chimica e Biochimica (solo per la parte di chimica e propedeutica biochimica) – M. Bertoldi, D. Colombo, O. Marin, P. Palestini - EdiSES
BIOCHEMISTRY (ENGLISH VERSIONS)
5. Introduzione alla Biochimica di Lehninger – D.L. Nelson, M.M. Cox – ZANICHELLI
6. Biochimica medica – Siliprandi, Tettamanti – PICCIN