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   Course Module: Biomolecules
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 Module Code:  CM324

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Course Outline
Nature of Lipids in the cell. Structure and function of various lipid
classes. Oils and fats and fatty acids. General aspects on structure and
function. General discussion on current problems, e.g. essential fatty
acids, cholesterol, lipoproteins, antioxidants (1 L)
Fatty acids and triacylglycerols. Nomenclature, occurrence and biosynthesis
of fatty acids. Essential fatty acids, plant derived fatty acids, n-3 fatty
acids, saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Analysis of
fatty acids, positional and geometrical isomerism. Analysis of
triglycerides by GC and HPLC. Representative types of oils and fats
(soyabean, palm, coconut, butter, lard, tallow and cocoa butter) and some
of their properties. Chirality in triacylglycerols, stereospecific analysis
by chemical and lipase reactions. Fatty acids reactions (including lipase
reactions) and synthesis. Applications to oleochemicals, surfactants and
synthetic fat substitutes. Fatty alcohols, esters, amides, ethoxylates,
sulphates, a-sulpho-esters, sugar-esters, dimer alcohols, dimer acids, etc.
Chemical synthesis of highly functional fatty acid derivatives -
leukotrienes. Wittig chemistry, alkyne chemistry. Chiral synthesis with
Sharpless epoxidation or dihydroxylation. Brief mention of prostanoids.
Autoxidation and thermal reactions of oils and fats - mechanisms (5 L)
Nucleic acids - general discussion of their occurrence in life; genomes and
genes. Nucleic acid bases (A, T, G, C, & U), prebiotic chemistry and their
formation. Reactions of purines and pyrimidines, tautomerism, alkylation,
deamination. Complementary base pairing. Ribose and deoxyribose.
Nucleosides and nucleotides. Oligonucleotides and polynucleotides.
Complementary base pairing and DNA duplex structure, B-DNA, base-stacking,
minor and major grooves, double-helix formation, linear and circular DNA,
macromolecular structures with proteins histones and chromatin,
chromasomes. Some reactions of DNA, intercalation, thymine dimerisation by
UV, chain cleavage via alkylation or free radical attack. DNA replication,
replication fork, leading and lagging strands in DNA unwinding. RNA
structure and function. Transcription - mRNA and tRNA, protein synthesis,
genetic code. Polymerase chain reaction. Genetic engineering. Sequencing of
genes. Chemical synthesis. Antisense drugs. General discussion on issues
related to cloning and gene manipulation. (4 L)