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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Deanery of Biomedical Sciences : Integrative Biomedical Sciences (Zhejiang)

Undergraduate Course: Ion Channel Biology 4 (IBMS10006)

Course Outline
SchoolDeanery of Biomedical Sciences CollegeCollege of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe main topic of this course is the molecular processes occurring at, in or across the lipid bilayer, mediated by membrane proteins. The aim is to provide an understanding of the function, structure and organisation of the membranes proteins, with the main focus on ion channels.
Course description The main topic of this course is the molecular processes occurring at, in or across the lipid bilayer, mediated by membrane proteins. The aim is to provide an understanding of the function, structure and organisation of the membranes proteins, with the main focus on ion channels.
Membranes play crucial roles in the function and architecture of cells, as they allow the exchange of signals, solutes and ions between the inside and outside of the cell, and define sub-cellular compartments. As the membrane itself is a passive hydrophobic barrier, proteins embedded in the lipid bilayer fulfil crucial roles in the functions described above. This course will cover concepts and research techniques in membrane proteins, with a special focus on the ion channels, while we will also mention the roles of transporters, pores and other medically important membrane proteins. These membrane proteins are key players in cognitive processes, such as learning and memory, and also for muscle function, including the heart, but are thought to have important roles in a wide array of diseases including cancer, and kidney and lung disorders. This course will also provide an overview of membrane protein biogenesis, interactions, dynamics and medical importance, as many of the proteins are involved in diseases and are due to their unique position- prominent drug targets.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2022/23, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 30, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 25, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 141 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 40 %, Coursework 60 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Exam: 40% (100% SAQs)«br /»
ICA: Essay on student-selected theme related to, but outwith, taught components (1000 words) 30%«br /»
ICA: Essay comparing and contrasting defined experimental techniques (1000 words) 30%«br /»
Feedback Discussion and consolidation sessions each week provide opportunities to provide feedback on learning and skill development and all formats of assessed work. Written formative feedback will be provided as key academic skills are developed particularly in essay writing and presentational skills. Feedback will be given following the summative evaluation of in-course assessments.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Describe the fundamental properties of the 'gatekeepers of cells': the membrane proteins.
  2. Discuss what sets membrane proteins apart from their soluble counterparts and to describe the structure-function relationships of ion channels and other biomedically-important membrane proteins.
  3. Describe the biogenesis (including insertion and assembly) of ion channels and their interaction with other biomolecules (including pharmaceutical drugs) as function regulation mechanisms.
  4. Evaluate how defects in membrane-protein function lead to disease.
  5. Demonstrate awareness of the experimental approaches and model systems for membrane protein biochemistry, with a focus on ion channel function.
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills To develop a multi-level thinking process to approach a biological phenomenon such as ion channel function from a chemistry & physics perspective on the one side, and from physiology on the other side. To establish a comprehensive scientific thinking process to identify subject, goal and process, including proposal of experiments with their potential outcomes (thought-experiment) to solving a scientific problem. To work together to tackle a scientific question in terms of identifying and allocating sub-tasks, discussing and developing an idea, to create and evolve an un-influenced view on e.g. a biological phenomenon or molecular mechanism without prior knowledge (including outside the box thinking). To comprehend and summarise a topic in a particular field from literature (includes academic writing).
KeywordsBiological Sciences,Biomedical Sciences,Membrane protein/ Protein Biochemistry,Membranes of Cell
Course organiserDr John Menzies
Tel: (0131 6)51 1711
Course secretaryMiss Natasha Goldie
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