A.Y. 2021/2022
Overall hours
Learning objectives
At the end of the course the student will be able to describe the fundamental concepts on how the cell functions, based on its architecture, (macro)molecular components, metabolism, and the role of genetic information. Students will acquire an operative understanding of biochemistry, which will enable them to work within a bioinformatics context, with full comprehension of the key molecular players involved.
Expected learning outcomes
Students will acquire an operative understanding that will enable them to work within a bioinformatics context, with full control and understanding of the acting molecular partners and their interactions.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
Lessons will be held exclusively on line on the Microsoft Teams platform, and students will be able to follow them both in real time according to the course timetable, or through the recordings that will be made available to them.
Course syllabus
The course topics that will be covered:
Fundamentals of cell architecture. Membranes, organelles and their functions, cell compartments, ribosome.
Introduction to biological macromolecules. Proteins as polymers of amino acids; nucleotides in relation to energetic considerations; nucleic acids as polymers of nucleotides; polysaccharides and lipids (basic). Fundamentals of sequence databases (nucleic acids, proteins). Sequence alignment tools.
Nucleic acid functionality in protein synthesis. DNA and RNA structures. basic concepts in transcription and translation. Chromatin structure
Protein structure: the peptide bond, Ramachandran plot, secondary and higher level structures. Protein Data Bank (PDB), computational biology and data bases, macromolecular dynamics and their simulations
Protein functions, enzymes: catalysis, enzyme kinetics (basic), role of catalysis in metabolism.
Thermodynamics of metabolism. Biochemical thermodynamics; ATP, energy transfer, coupling of endo-/exo-ergonic reactions.
Energy metabolism. Form glucose to CO2 : Glycolysis, pyruvate oxidase, tricarboxylic acid cycle, electron transfer, oxidative phosphorylation.
General concepts. Linking of the above concepts to cell functionality; examples of metabolism-related pathologies.
Prerequisites for admission
No prerequisites different from those required for admission to the Master Degree program
Teaching methods
Lessons will consist of frontal lectures, according to the course timetable.
Teaching Resources
Suggested text books:
- Appling, Antony-Cahill & Mathews: Biochimica, Molecole e Metabolismo (Pearson 2017)
- Nelson D.L. & Cox M.M. - Lehninger's Principles of Biochemistry, Worth Publishers
- Voet D. & Voet, J.G. - Biochemistry, Wiley & Sons.
Additional learning materials (animations, websites and scientific articles) will be indicated and provided by the teacher during the course.
Assessment methods and Criteria
Exams will consist of multiple-choice questions, to assess global understanding of the entire course and open questions, to assess in-depth knowledge of key concepts presented during the course.
BIO/10 - BIOCHEMISTRY - University credits: 6
Lectures: 48 hours
Educational website(s)