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Biochemistry II

D Semester
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Course units: 
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Hours per week




Objectives of the course (preferably expressed in terms of learning outcomes and competences): To understand principles of the structure and function of nucleic acids, the flow and regulation of genetic information, and the structure, function of cellular membranes and receptors and the mechanisms of molecular signaling and sensing.

Course contents:

1. DNA, RNA and the flow of genetic information (structure of DNA and RNA, principles of gene expression and regulation)

2. Biosynthesis of Nucleotides (de novo biosynthesis of pyrimidines and purines, salvage pathways, reduction of ribonucleotides, regulation of biosynthetic pathways, mutations)

3. DNA replication and repair (DNA polymerases, separation of DNA strands, telomeres, topological properties of DNA, DNA damage and repair mechanisms)

4. RNA synthesis and maturation (prokaryotic and eukaryotic transcription, RNA polymerases, post-transcriptional modification of RNA, RNA splicing, transcriptional regulation)

5. Protein synthesis (tRNA aminoacylation, the ribosome, mRNA translation, fidelity of translation, translation factors, translational control)

6. Structure and function of lipids and cellular membanes (biosynthesis of membrane lipids and cholesterol, lipid mobilization and cholesterol metabolism, structure and function of transporters, channels and transmembrane receptors)

7. Membrane pumps and channels (ion transport across membranes, P-type ATPases, ligand- and voltage-gated channels, sugar transporters)

8. Molecular signalling (steroid hormone receptors, 7TM receptors, channel receptors, G proteins, adenylate cyclase and phosphoinositide cascades, calcium signalling, protein phosphorylation)

9. Integration of metabolism (key regulatory steps in energy production, organspecific metabolic function and regulation, principles of hormonal regulation, diabetes mellitus and alcoholism).

10. Sensory systems (odorants and olfaction, taste, photoreceptor molecules and vision, mechanical stimuli and hearing, sense of touch)

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The Department of Biology of the University of Crete was established in 1981 and is today an internationally recognized center for contemporary university education and research in the field of Biology.

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