Bachelor's degree in Physiotherapy (to qualify as a physiotherapist) (Vicenza)

Propaedeutic physical and biological sciences (2016/2017)

Course code
Cristina Bombieri

Teaching is organised as follows:
Unit Credits Academic sector Period Academic staff
BIOCHIMICA 2 BIO/10-BIOCHEMISTRY FISIO VI 1^ anno - 1^semestre Giovanni Gotte
FISICA APPLICATA 2 FIS/07-APPLIED PHYSICS FISIO VI 1^ anno - 1^semestre Davide Conte
STATISTICA MEDICA 2 MED/01-MEDICAL STATISTICS FISIO VI 1^ anno - 1^semestre Francesca Locatelli
BIOLOGIA APPLICATA 2 BIO/13-EXPERIMENTAL BIOLOGY FISIO VI 1^ anno - 1^semestre Cristina Bombieri

Learning outcomes

The whole course is intended to provide knowledge of basic sciences, as biochemistry, cell biology and genetics, physics and statistics, preparatory for further specific courses, with particular regards to concepts subsequently useful for understanding and deepening biomedical and physioterapic issues.
By the end of the course students will have acquired:
- knowledge of cell biology and genetics basic mechanisms which regulate cell activities, reproduction, interactions, through the acquisition of the fundamental concepts of functional and molecular principles of cellular processes common to all living organisms and of the mode of transmission of human genetic diseases;
- basic knowledge of organic chemistry and biochemistry on the structure-function relationships of the most important biological macromolecules, the metabolic regulation at the molecular level, and the energy level changes associated to different biochemical pathways;
- expertise in bio-statistics, with particula regards to basic statistical methods for the analysis of biomedical data such as basic theoretical and practical tools for summarizing sample information, probability calculation, and for generalizing the information collected on a sample to the target population;
- basic knowledge and understanding of fundamental laws of physics, particularly of mechanics and fluidodynamics, and their application in biomedical phenomena and real situations, as well as the ability to solve simple physics problems also relative to real situations, such as joints and equilibrium of bodies.
This fundamental knowledge is a prerequisite for further specializations that will be object of the following year teachings. The course of Propaedeutic physical and biological sciences is preparatory for Human Physiology, Chinesiology and Clinical practice (1st Year) assessments.
More details are available on the specific forms dedicated to the individual modules that constitute the teaching.


PREPARATORY CHEMISTRY (several notions are included in the basic knowledge required)
1. Atomic structure and periodic properties of the elements: matter composition, atom, atomic particles; atomic theory; quantum numbers, and orbitals; electronic configuration, periodic table and chemical reactivity of the elements; electronic affinity, electronegativity.
2. The chemical bond: molecules and ions; ionic and covalent bond; intermolecular forces; hydrogen bond.
3. Solutions and acid-base reactions: concentration of the solutions, acid-base theories of Arrhenius and Brőnsted-Lowry; hydracids, hydroxides, oxyacids; acid-base reactions; pH and buffer solutions.
4. Organic chemistry notions: carbon atom properties; hybrid orbitals; organic compounds classification: functional groups; hydrocarbons; alcohols, ethers, thiols, amines, aldehydes and ketones; carboxylic acids, esters, anhydrides.

1. Constitutive elements of the living matter: polymeric structure of the biological macromolecules.
2. Protein structure and function: aminoacid classification, buffering power, peptide bond, levels of protein structure; fibrous and globular proteins; hemoglobin and myoglobin: structure, function, factors influencing the oxygen bond; hemoglobin variants; enzymes: classification, role in the chemical reactions, regulation of the enzymatic activity.
3. Vitamins: hydro- and lypo-soluble vitamins; co-enzymes.
4. Bio-energetics: metabolism; chemical transformations in the cell; spontaneous and non-spontaneous reactions of the metabolic reactions; ATP as “energy exchange coin”; biologically relevant redox reactions.
5. Carbohydrates structure and metabolism: mono- and disaccharides; polysaccharides; glycoconjugates; glycolysis and its regulation; gluconeogenesis; hints of the penthose phosphate pathway; synthesis of the glycogen.
6. Citric acid cycle and oxidative phosphorylation: mitochondria; acetyl-CoA synthesis; citric acid cycle control; respiratory chain and electron transport; ATP synthesis.
7. Lipids structure and metabolism: structural lipids and biological membranes; cholesterol; stock-reserve lipids; lipids digestion and fatty acid β-oxydation; keton bodies formation; hints of fatty acids biosynthesis.
8. Aminoacid metabolism: hints of gluco- and keto-forming aminoacids; transamination and oxidative deamination; the urea cycle.

examples, measurement units

position, displacement, velocity, acceleration
linear motion, circular motion
Forces, Newton's laws
Power, work, kinetic energy, potential energy, mechanical energy
Conservative and not-conservative forces

rigid body definition, translation and rotation
Moment of Inertia
Static equilibrium of a rigid body

Use of statistics in health data

Collection and presentation of data
Measurement procedure and Variable types
Precision and accuracy of a measurement procedure
Tables 1 and 2 entries
Absolute and relative frequencies
Cumulative frequencies
Graphical representation of the data

Position and dispersion measures
Quantiles and median
Simple and weighted mean
Range and standard deviation
Coefficient of variation

Introduction to probability
Definition of probability
Rule of addition and multiplication
Independent and conditional probability

Introduction to statistical inference
The concept of statistical inference
Inference techniques:
Binomial and Gauss distribution, confidence intervals and Hypothesis testing

Diagnostic and screening test:Sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value of screening.

- Characteristics of the living beings. Organization levels of living organisms. Symbiosis. Autotrophy and heterotrophy.
- Water: characteristics and biological importance.
- Structure, function, replication of the eukaryotic and prokaryotic cell. Role of the cell compartmentalisation.
- Biological membrane: structure, properties and function. Passage of materials across cell membranes. Cell junctions.
- Cell communication.
- Cell cycle and its regulation, mitosis, meiosis, cell death. Sexual and asexual reproduction.
- The human genome. Organisation of DNA in chromosome. Chromatin structure and composition.
- DNA: structure, function, replication. DNA and its role in heredity. Definition of gene. Informational pathway: transcription, RNA maturation, genetic code, translation and protein synthesis.
- DNA mutation and repair.
- Chromosomal bases of inheritance: Normal and pathological human karyotype.
- Hereditary character transmission and Mendel’s laws. Mode of genetic information transmission: autosomal and sex-linked heredity. Introduction to transmission of complex characters.
- Hereditary and genetic diseases. Examples. Somatic mutations and cancer.

Assessment methods and criteria

The exam consists of 4 written tests, one for each module, based on all the issues covered throughout the course. For each academic year, 6 periods are available to take the exams: 2 in the Winter Session at the end of the course, 2 in the Summer Session and 2 in the Autumn Session. The 4 tests can be passed separately as long as they are within the Winter Session at the course ending. In the Summer and Autumn Sessions, tests must be passed simultaneously.
Students who have been admitted to the undergraduate degree with a score lower than 6 points in Biology, 3 points in Chemistry and / or 3 points in Physics and Mathematics, must have first discharged their training debts, before taking the exam.
To pass the exam, students must get a score of not less than 18/30 in each test. The final mark (/out of 30) willl derive from the weighted average over credits of each single test score. Students can retire or refuse the proposed score: in such case, any partial credit will be canceled and the students shall enroll again for the whole examination (all the 4 tests).
See the forms of each single module for more details.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
Docente del corso Fisica: dispense del docente  
A. Fiecchi, M. Galli Kienle, A. Scala Chimica e propedeutica biochimica Edi-Ermes  
Verlato G, Zanolin ME Esercizi di Statistica Medica, Informatica ed Epidemiologia Libreria Cortina Editrice, Verona 2000
Douglas G. Altman Practical Statistics for Medical Research 1990
Lantieri PB, Risso D., Rovida S., Ravera G. Statistica medica ed elementi di informatica. McGraw-Hill Libri Italia srl Milano 1994
Roberti, Antognelli, Bistocchi, Talesa Biochimica e Biologia per le professioni sanitarie (Edizione 2) McGraw-Hill 2013
Solomon, Berg, Martin Elementi di Biologia (Edizione 6) EdiSES 2013
Sadava, Hillis, Craig Heller, Hacker Elementi di Biologia e Genetica (Edizione 5) Zanichelli 2019 9788808820655

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