Cellular Biochemistry

Cellular Biochemistry

Teachers: Giampaolo Minetti, Lars Kaerstner

Course content

Students should have a solid background in chemistry and biochemistry because some of the questions at the exam will deal with molecular structures and metabolic pathways.

The students will be presented with a comprehensive course on protein biochemistry, from protein synthesis, rudiments of protein folding and structure, translation regulation and, most importantly, protein sorting and vesicular trafficking, with some detour to deal with unusual topics such as selenoproteins. Students will become familiar with cellular molecular processes that are the subject of intense investigation in frontier research in cell biology. Students who attended this course will be ready to engage without problems in a PhD course should they intend to proceed further in the research field.

Protein synthesis and its regulation. Selenoproteins. Protein structure: overview of the main types of structural domains. Protein folding and molecular chaperones. Mechanisms and regulation of protein sorting and transport. Post-translational modifications of proteins. Protein turnover and degradation. Biological membranes. Membrane proteins. Membrane transport including ion channels. Exploring cellular biochemistry by imaging methods: Principles and Examples. Biochemistry of subcellular structures: cell organelles. Membrane trafficking and recycling. Cell signaling: pathways of signal transduction, signaling molecules, receptors. Programmed cell-death (apoptosis). Cancer.

–¬†Lecture slides.
– Alberts B, Johnson A, Lewis J, Raff M, Roberts K & Walter P. Molecular Biology of the Cell. 5th ed. Garland Science, 2007.
– Voet D & Voet JG. Biochemistry. Wiley, 2010.