Molecular Biology

Degree course: 
Corso di First cycle degree in BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES
Academic year when starting the degree: 
Academic year in which the course will be held: 
Course type: 
Compulsory subjects, characteristic of the class
Second semester
Standard lectures hours: 
Detail of lecture’s hours: 
Lesson (72 hours)

Biochemistry and Cellular Biology

Final Examination: 

The final exam will test the acquired knowledge through a written test. This test is a mixture of open and multiple choice questions covering the entire program. Candidates that reach 26/30 points or above will have the chance of trying an oral exam to reach the maximum score.

Voto Finale

The course aims at providing the basic knowledge regarding the molecular mechanisms that regulate and underpin the maintenance and the flow of genetic information in prokaryotes, eukaryotes and viruses. Moreover, the course is aimed at providing the students knowledge of the principal techniques of molecular biology and how to use these to solve specific biological problems with particular emphasis on the proper controls.

• Biologic macromolecules: DNA, RNA, and proteins (structure, function, and the techniques for their isolation).
• Model organisms used in molecular biology.
• Main techniques of molecular biology used to analyze DNA, RNA and proteins and their manipulation (hybridization of nucleic acids, Southern, Northern, in situ hybridization, DNA sequencing, PCR, qPCR, techniques of genetic engineering, SDS-PAGE, Western blot, production and utility of mono- and polyclonal antibodies, HIC, IP, ChiP, Tag. A brief overview of tran-scriptomics.
• DNA topology and the topoisomerases.
• Chromatin condensation in eukariotes: structure of nucleosomes and the superior levels of compaction.
• DNA replication in phages, prokariotes and eukariotes.
• Transcription in prokariotes: structure of the transcriptional apparatus, promoters and the mechanisms of regulation.
• Transcription in eukariotes: structure of the transcriptional apparatus, promoters and the mechanisms of regulation.
• Splicing of RNA: molecular mechanisms and evolution.
• Translation in prokariotes described at the molecular level with the fundamental passages and mechanisms of regulation.
• Brief overview of translation in eukariotes with emphasis on difference with respect to prokariotes.
• DNA repair.
• Recombination.
• Transposons

All arguments will include an explanation of different experimental approaches aimed at demonstrating the current evidence. The students will thus review the main molecular biology techniques used in modern laboratories. Special emphasis will be given to the concept of proper controls allowing a correct interpretation of the experiments.

Pdf files of the lectures will be given to the students during the course.
As textbook is recommended one of the following books:
1. MM Cox, Jennifer A. Doudna, MO’Donnel Molecular Biology: Principles and Techniques. Zanichelli;
2. Watson JD, Baker TA, Bell SP, Gann A. Levine M. Losick Molecular Biology of the Gene (6th edition) Zanichelli.


The course consists of 8 CFU of lectures.

Upon appointment via email: