General and cellular biology

A.Y. 2015/2016
Lesson for
7
Max ECTS
64
Overall hours
Language
Italian
Learning objectives
Il corso ha lo scopo di dare allo studente un'informazione di base sulle caratteristiche fondamentali degli organismi viventi. In particolare, il corso si propone di fornire agli studenti le basi per comprendere la logica utilizzata dagli organismi viventi nella realizzazione delle strutture biologiche fondamentali e nel loro funzionamento, utili per affrontare qualsiasi indirizzo di studio successivo al primo anno. Al termine del corso, lo studente dovrà acquisire conoscenze sui principali costituenti inorganici ed organici degli organismi viventi, sui processi e la regolazione di base della sintesi degli acidi nucleici e delle proteine, sui ruoli principali di queste macromolecole e sul flusso dell'informazione genica, dal DNA alle proteine, nella cellula procariotica ed eucariotica. Lo studente dovrà inoltre conoscere l'organizzazione molecolare e la funzione degli organelli cellulari e delle membrane delle cellule procariotiche ed eucariotiche ed i processi di divisione cellulare delle cellule eucariotiche.

Course structure and Syllabus

Active edition
Yes
Responsible
Practicals: 16 hours
Lessons: 48 hours
Professor: Battaglioli Elena
Syllabus
General characteristics and principles of classification of living beings. Kingdoms: Bacteria, Archaea, Protista, Fungi, Plantae and Animalia. Biodiversity and the origin of life.
Chemical composition of living matter. Chemical bonds. Structure and function of biological macromolecules: carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, and nucleic acids. The DNA as the hereditary material. General remarks on eukaryotic gene structure. From genes to proteins: transcription, processing of RNAs, and translation.
Energy and metabolism. Matter and energy flux through living matter. Chemoautotrophic, photoautotrophic, and heterotrophic organisms. Nature and properties of enzymes as biological catalysts. The concept of metabolic pathway. Bioenergetics (general remarks) and metabolic compartmentalization. Energy-carrier molecules and coupled reactions. The eukaryotic cell and its compartmentalization. Comparison between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. Unicellular and multi-cellular organisms. General aspects of bacteria and viruses and their interactions with eukaryotic cells.

Structure and functions of the eukaryotic cell. General aspects of methods for studying cells and tissues. Biological membranes: chemical composition, structure and functions of plasma membrane. Transport mechanisms across membranes. Fundamentals of cell communication and signaling. The nucleus. Chromatin and chromosomes. The system of intracellular membranes: the nuclear envelope, the endoplasmic reticulum, the Golgi apparatus. Intracellular compartments and transport. The cytoskeleton. The mitochondria: structure and functions. Lysosomes and peroxysomes. Extracellular matrix. Junctions between cells; the organisation of cells in tissues. Interaction of organisms with the external environment.
Eukaryotic cell reproduction: the cell cycle and its control. Uncontrolled cell proliferation: cancer. Comparison between somatic and germinal cells through processes of mitosis and meiosis. General aspects of mechanisms of fertilisation. Early phases of embryo development.

Practical courses and seminars:
DNA replication: the Meselson-Stahl experiment.
Introduction to biology laboratory
Rudiments of light and fluorescence microscopy.
Viewing of living cells in culture and of fixed and stained cells by light microscopy.
Lesson period
First semester
Lesson period
First semester
Assessment methods
Esame
Assessment result
voto verbalizzato in trentesimi
Professor(s)
Reception:
Appointment upon request
Dept. Medical Biotechnology and Translational Medicine, Via F.lli Cervi 93, 20090 Segrate