General Biochemistry A
Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia
Departamento de Química
Teacher in charge
José Ricardo Ramos Franco Tavares
The course aims to provide an understanding of:
1) the bases of life at molecular level: the structure and function of the
biomolecules (Proteins, Carbohydrates, Lipids and Nucleic acids).
2) the basic techniques for biomolecules purification, structure determination, and methods used to analyze biochemical structures and processes, including the use of molecular genetic tools.
3) the principles and exploitation of methods of recombinant DNA technology and protein engineering;
4) enzyme mechanisms and kinetics.
5) metabolic pathways, control of metabolic flux and mechanisms of energy transduction processes in mitochondria and chloroplasts.
Strongly recommended a basic background of organic chemistry and general chemistry. Essential concepts are chemical bonding, intermolecular interactions and chemical equilibrium (namely, acid-base and redox reactions).
Summary of the lectures:
1- Introduction to Biochemistry (Biological structures, metabolic pathways, expression and transmission of genetic information).
2- The amino acids properties: peptide bonds - Classification and characteristics. Acid-base properties
3- Levels of protein structure organization: primary, secondary (alpha helices, beta sheets and other structural elements), tertiary and quaternary structures. Protein isolation, purification and sequencing.
4- Fibrous proteins (Keratin, silk, collagen) and globular protein (Myoglobin and hemoglobin)
5- Enzyme kinetics Inhibition and regulation.
6- Carbohydrates (Classification and function). Monosaccharides and structural and storage polysaccharides (cellulose, chitin, starch and glycogen). Glycoproteins (Proteoglycans and glycosylated proteins).
7- Biological Membranes: structure and dynamic. Biological transport: Passive-mediated transport, active-transport. Ion channels, Uniport, symport, and antiporte systems.
8- Nucleic acids (RNA and DNA): structure and function. Denaturation and Renaturation of nucleic acid. Restriction endonucleases: the chain- terminator method of DNA sequencing and
9 - Metabolism (Catabolism and anabolism) and Bioenergetics: Glycolysis, lactic and alcoholic fermentation, Citric acid Cycle, electron transport chain and oxidative phosphorylation.
10 – Photosynthesis.
1 -Amino acid and Proteins – Acid-base properties
2 - Structure polypeptides and proteins.
3 - Enzyme kinetics
4 - Nucleic acids. Biological membranes.
5 – Metabolism
Laboratory sessions :
1 – Amino acid titrations
2 – Separation of biological compounds by chromatography
A – Gel filtration
B – Ionic Chromatography
3 – Enzymatic characterization of Fusarium graminearum beta-glucosidase
4 – Determination of mitochondrial cytochrome c reduction potential
Nelson, D.L., & Cox, M.M.
W.H. Freeman and Company, San Francisco, 5th ed. 2008
Voet, D., Voet, J.G. & Pratt, C.W.
John Wiley & Sons, Inc., New York, 3rd ed. 2008
W. H. Freeman and Company, San Francisco. 6th Ed. 2007.