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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Biological Sciences : Postgraduate

Postgraduate Course: Biophysical Chemistry for MSc Drug Discovery & Translational Biology (PGBI11041)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Biological Sciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThis course deals with the major principles of physics and chemistry that underlie the structures, dynamics and interactions of biological macromolecules. The lectures will detail the structures of biomacromolecules and will provide an overview of many modern biophysical techniques; the workshops will allow students to probe macromolecular structures and to explore how the techniques are applied to biological systems and drug discovery. Techniques covered will include NMR spectroscopy, circular dichroism, light scattering, fluorescence, mass spectrometry and surface plasmon resonance.
Course description Course Outline:
Weeks 1 - 3 Chemistry & Structure of Biomacromolecules,
- including proteins, nucleic acids, lipids and carbohydrates
Weeks 4 - 10 Biophysical Characterisation
- techniques and applications
Week 11 Feedback for essay draft (Friday)
Week 12 Essay Deadline
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesAs above
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
After completing this course, students should:
have a good understanding of macromolecular structure, conformational changes, dynamics and interactions
be able to use molecular graphics tools to analyse molecular structures
be familiar with the basic theory, experimental aspects and data analysis of several modern biophysical techniques
be able to explain how specific biophysical techniques can be applied to investigate molecular structure, size, conformation and stability
be able to explain how specific biophysical techniques can be applied to molecular interactions, particularly in the drug discovery process
have an appreciation of how the principles of physics and chemistry are used together with these techniques to gain an understanding of the properties and behaviour of biological molecules
be able to make a critical interpretation of the relevant literature
be able to write a coherent and informative essay.

Reading List
Recommended Reading (reading an occasional chapter, not for purchase)
Biophysical Chemistry (2nd edition) by A. Cooper, Royal Society of Chemistry 2011
Biophysical Chemistry, volumes 1-3 by C.R. Cantor and P.R. Schimmel, Freeman, 1980
Biophysical Techniques by I.D. Campbell, Oxford University Press, 2012
Physical Chemistry: Principles and Applications in Biological Sciences by I. Tinoco, K. Sauer, J.C. Wang and J.D. Puglisi, Prentice Hall, 2002
Principles of Physical Biochemistry by K.E. van Holde, W.C. Johnson and P.S. Ho, Prentice Hall, 1998.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Course organiserDr Janice Bramham
Tel: (0131 6)50 4786
Course secretaryMiss Vicky Mactaggart
Tel: (0131 6)51 5498
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