Bachelor's degree in Cardiocirculatory Physiopathology and Cardiovascular Perfusion Techniques (national qualification)

Biological and biochemical sciences - BIOCHIMICA

Course code
Name of lecturer
Giovanni Gotte
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Other available courses
Academic sector
Language of instruction
Lezioni 1 semestre PERF dal Oct 5, 2020 al Dec 18, 2020.

To show the organization of the course that includes this module, follow this link * Course organization

Lesson timetable

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Learning outcomes

During the Course are provided:
-Basic knowledge of general and organic chemistry preparatory for biochemistry.
-Structure-function relationships of the most important biological macromolecules and of the metabolic regulation at the molecular level.
-Cross-talk between the different biochemical pathways and the energy level changes associated.
At the end of the Course the student should demonstrate to have acquired the proper scientific terms and notions in order to critically and autonomously evaluate the biochemical processes of life.


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.
Frontal teaching is the exclusive method adopted in this Course.

Assessment methods and criteria

The exam modalities, unchanged from the past ones, are reported here below. Certainly, the unpredictable conditions induced by the pandemic COVID-19 will probably induce some modifications that will be communicated promptly.

To pass the Biochemistry module test the students must demonstrate they acquired the comprehension and the knowledge of the program topics. Furthermore, they must show the capability to expose their reasoning in a critical and precise manner and using an appropriate scientific language.
6 examination appeals are foreseen in the whole Academic Year: 2 in the Winter Session after the Course ending, 2 in the Summer Session, and 2 in the Autumn session.
The Biochemistry module exam is a written test based on the topics of the entire course. In particular, it consists of 10 multiple choice questions plus 2 open questions.
The Biochemistry module exam is considered passed if the vote is at least 18/30. It remains valid during the whole Academic Year and within the winter session of the subsequent Academic Year.

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