Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo / Portale Web di Ateneo


MOLECULAR BIOLOGY
BIOLOGIA MOLECOLARE

A.Y. Credits
2015/2016 8
Lecturer Email Office hours for students
Marzia Bianchi

Assigned to the Degree Course

Giorno Orario Aula

Learning Objectives

The learning objectives of the course are intended to introduce students to basic Molecular Biology, i.e. the study of genes and their activities at molecular level. The topics covered include DNA replication, repair, transcription, protein synthesis, as well as genetic recombination. Special attention will be paid to the multiple mechanisms regulating gene expression in both bacteria and eukaryotes, with an in depth look to some rapidly evolving fields, like epigenetic regulation and the role of different types of non-coding RNAs. In the next section, lectures will emphasize the theoretical basis of the most common techniques used by molecular biologists, for the analysis of gene expression.

Program

1. Nucleic acids: DNA and RNA
1.1 Discovery of DNA as the genetic material.
1.2 Chemistry of nucleic acids.
1.3 Primary, secondary and tertiary structures of DNA and their properties.
1.4 DNA topology.
1.5 RNA: structure and function (ribozymes).
2. DNA replication
2.1 General features and enzymology.
2.2 Replication of bacterial genome.
2.3 Replication of mitochondrial DNA.
2.4 Replication of viral genomes.
2.5 Replication of eukaryotic genome and cell cycle.
3. DNA damage and repair
3.1 Types and consequences of DNA damage.
3.2 Endogenous and exogenous (environmental) damages.
3.3 DNA repair: directly undoing DNA damage; excision repair (BER; NER; TC-NER); recombination repair; mismatch repair; double-strand break (DSB) repair.
4. DNA restructuring (molecular mechanisms)
4.1 Homologous recombination.
4.2 Site-specific recombination.
4.3 Transposition.
5. RNA synthesis from DNA templates: transcription
5.1 General features and key players of transcription: RNA polymerases; promoters.
5.2 The mechanism of transcription in bacteria.
5.3 The operon model: negative and positive control of transcription, transcriptional attenuation (Lac operon; Trp operon).
5.4 Transcription in eukaryotes: RNA polymerases and their promoters; transcription factors.
5.5 Messenger RNA processing: splicing; capping; polyadenylation; editing.
5.6 Ribosomal RNA and transfer RNA processing.
5.7 RNA degradation.
6. From RNA to proteins: translation
6.1 Genetic code.
6.2 Structure and function of the major participants in translation: mRNA; tRNA; ribosomes.
6.3 The mechanism of translation in bacteria: initiation, elongation and termination.
6.4 Translation in eukaryotes.
6.5 Post-translational modifications and sorting of the newly synthesized proteins.
6.6 Molecular chaperons and protein folding.
7. Structure and function of genes in higher eukaryotes
7.1 Different layers of gene expression regulation.
7.2 Regulation at genomic level: selective alterations of DNA; chromatin remodelling; post-translational modifications of histones (histone code).
7.3 Transcriptional regulation: enhancers; silencers; gene-specific transcription factors.
7.4 Post-transcriptional regulation: processing, export, translation and stability of mRNA.
7.5 Regulation by small non-coding RNAs: microRNAs; siRNAs; PIWI-interacting RNAs (piRNAs).
8. Techniques for analysis of gene expression
8.1 In situ hybridization.
8.2 Northern blotting.
8.3 Ribonuclease protection assay (RPA).
8.4 Reverse transcription (RT)-PCR.
8.5 Real-time PCR.
8.6 Microarrays.

Bridging Courses

None.

Learning Achievements (Dublin Descriptors)

Students will need to show that they have acquired a good basic knowledge of structure and function of the genomes, as well as of the principal methods used to analyze gene expression.

Teaching Material

The teaching material prepared by the lecturer in addition to recommended textbooks (such as for instance slides, lecture notes, exercises, bibliography) and communications from the lecturer specific to the course can be found inside the Moodle platform › blended.uniurb.it

Supporting Activities

One practical experience will be planned during the course.


Didactics, Attendance, Course Books and Assessment

Didactics

Lectures.
One practical experience will be planned during the course.

Attendance

Students must attend the lab hours.

Course books

• J.D. Watson, T.A. Baker, S.P. Bell, A. Gann, M. Levine, R. Losick. BIOLOGIA MOLECOLARE DEL GENE, Zanichelli, 2015.
• F. Amaldi, P. Benedetti, G. Pesole, P. Plevani. BIOLOGIA MOLECOLARE, Casa Editrice Ambrosiana, 2014.
• N. L. Craig, O. Cohen-Fix, R. Green, C. W. Greider, G. Storz, C. Wolberger. BIOLOGIA MOLECOLARE, Principi di funzionamento del genoma, Pearson, 2013.
• D. Clark, N. Pazdernik. MOLECULAR BIOLOGY, 2nd Ed. Elsevier Science & Technology, 2012.
• R. F. Weaver. BIOLOGIA MOLECOLARE, McGraw-Hill, 2009.

Other texts or scientific reviews will be indicated during the course.

Assessment

Oral examination.

Additional Information for Non-Attending Students

Didactics

Lectures.
One practical experience will be planned during the course.

Attendance

Students must attend the lab hours.

Course books

• J.D. Watson, T.A. Baker, S.P. Bell, A. Gann, M. Levine, R. Losick. BIOLOGIA MOLECOLARE DEL GENE, Zanichelli, 2015.
• F. Amaldi, P. Benedetti, G. Pesole, P. Plevani. BIOLOGIA MOLECOLARE, Casa Editrice Ambrosiana, 2014.
• N. L. Craig, O. Cohen-Fix, R. Green, C. W. Greider, G. Storz, C. Wolberger. BIOLOGIA MOLECOLARE, Principi di funzionamento del genoma, Pearson, 2013.
• D. Clark, N. Pazdernik. MOLECULAR BIOLOGY, 2nd Ed. Elsevier Science & Technology, 2012.
• R. F. Weaver. BIOLOGIA MOLECOLARE, McGraw-Hill, 2009.

Other texts or scientific reviews will be indicated during the course.

Assessment

Oral examination.

Notes

The student can request to sit the final exam in English with an alternative bibliography.

« back Last update: 13/09/15

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