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Course Information Undergraduate prospectus

Metabolism and Disease

Course summary

Course code: BIOC0581
Level: 5
Credits: 15
School: Engineering and Science
Department: Life and Sports Sciences
Course Coordinator(s): Lauren Pecorino



The aims of this course are:
To provide an introduction to basic concepts in metabolism and the principles of metabolic pathways.
To provide students with information on core metabolic pathways.
To discuss relationships with metabolism and core disease pathways.

Learning outcomes

On completing this course successfully you will be able to:

1. Discuss general issues related to regulation and integration of metabolic processes.
2. Discuss the use of various metabolites as energy sources.
3. Distinguish between major groups of metabolites.
4. Identify the subcellular location of steps of selected metabolic pathways.
5. Compare strategies involved in catabolism and anabolism of specific metabolites.
6. Explain the metabolic bases of selected diseases.

On completing this course successfully you will be able to:
1. Recognise and apply subject specific theories, paradigms, concepts or principles e.g. link between metabolism and disease;
2. Analyse, synthesise and summarise information (with evidence of comparative / critical appraisal);
3. Apply knowledge and understanding to address problems. design plan conduct and report on investigation;
4. Obtain, record and analyse data using appropriate techniques (working individually or as a group);
5. Undertake investigations in a responsible, safe and ethical manner developing and adaptable, flexible, and effective approach to study and work;
6. Communicate about their subject appropriately cite and reference work in an appropriate manner;
7. Use the internet and other electronic sources critically as a means of communication and a source of information;
8. Demonstrate self-management skills for lifelong learning; demonstrate an adaptable, flexible, and effective approach to study and work.

Indicative content

Principles of metabolism and metabolic pathways, including regulation (e.g. hormonal)
Inter-relationships between anabolism and catabolism
Metabolic significance of compartmentalisation in eukaryotic cells.
Bioenergetics: Thermodynamics of metabolism; equilibrium and non-equilibrium reactions
The role of ATP.
Enzyme kinetics; the role of co-factors and co-enzymes.
Specific metabolic pathways will be covered eg: Glycosis;
Gluconeogenesis; glycogen metabolism; β-oxidation pathway;
TCA cycle and associated anaplerotic pathways;
Electron transport chain;
Oxygen free radical metabolism;
Amino acid metabolism; purine and pyrimidine nucleotide metabolism.
In the context of metabolic processes, a range of diseases will be discussed, for example: kwashiorkor, gout, phenylketonuria, Lesch-Nyhan syndrome, Parkinson's disease, tyrosinaemia, glycogen storage disease (type V): McArdles syndrome, diseases due to oxygen free radical damage.

Teaching and learning activity

The course will be delivered largely via lectures and practicals together with tutorials. Development of group working and presentational skills will also take place in practicals / tutorials.

Learning Time (1 credit = 10 hours)
Contact Hours:
lectures 24;
seminars 0;
practical sessions 12;
tutorials 12;
other 0;
Private Study 80;
Assignments: course work and other forms of assessment:
coursework 20;
laboratory work 0;
examinations 2;
other 0.


Test - 25%
Short answer and problem solving/essay test.

Practical - 25%
A practical write up relevant to theoretical knowledge of the course.

Exam - 50%
2 hours.

Pass mark - 40% overall.