Biochemistry of foods of animal origin

A.Y. 2019/2020
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course will provide students skills in theory and practice on the biochemistry of food of animal origin and on molecular markers of quality and traceability of foods for human safety.
Expected learning outcomes
The student is required to demonstrate knowledge of the composition at molecular level of foods of animal origin and of the biochemical transformation during post-mortem storage and cooking. Students will develop skills in application and interpretation of methods routinely used in biochemistry laboratories for food safety analysis and traceability. The acquired knowledge will be useful to the student to understand the impact of biochemical processes of food processing on the quality of animal productions. Students will will acquire skills to tackle the complex management of food of animal origin processing in a more critical and autonomous way.
Course syllabus and organization

Unique edition

Lesson period
Second semester
Course syllabus
Theoretical training (16h)
- Molecular basis of foods of animal origin: structure, chemical and biochemical characteristics of milk, meat and fish (6h).
- Post-mortem biochemistry of meat and fish (4h).
- Biochemical transformation of foods during storage and cooking (4h)
- Biochemical characteristics and biological effects of selected food additive and contaminates (2h).

Practice (16h)
- Theoretical and practical aspects of laboratory methods and instruments for food analysis (4h).
- Analytical methods for authentication and traceability of processed foods of animal origin (4h)
- From the instrument reading to the analyte concentration: computer elaboration of raw data and graphical representation of the results (4h).
- Conversion between units of measurement used to express quantity and concentration of food analytes (4h)
Prerequisites for admission
There are no compulsory propaedeutic exams (barrier exams), but basic knowledge of general biochemistry is required.
Teaching methods
Lectures (2 CFU) and laboratory activity (1 CFU)
- Power point hand outs and lecture notes present on the ARIEL web site -
- Food Chemistry. Fourth edition by H.D. Belitz. Eds Springer (2009).
- Biochimica degli alimenti e della nutrizione. Cozzani e Dainese. Eds Piccin (2006).
- Arienti, Le basi molecolari della nutrizione, Piccin Nuova Libraria, 2003.
Assessement methods and criteria
The exam consists of an oral interview aimed to evaluate knowledge and understanding of the lectures' subjects and of the laboratory activities. The test will be evaluated in thirtieths. The score will take into account the accuracy and the capacity to motivate the answers, as well as the capacity to explain the concepts acquired with appropriate and updated terminology.
Practicals: 16 hours
Lessons: 16 hours
Professor: Borromeo Vitaliano