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Biochemistry at UBCO is a program jointly offered by the Biology and Chemistry departments. It is the study of chemical compounds and reactions that occur in living organisms. Specifically it deals with the structure and function of proteins, nucleic acids, carbohydrates, and lipids, the basic constituents of living cells. Biochemists work to understand the structure of cells and how they function at the molecular level. They look at the role of these macromolecules in metabolic pathways, how the pathways are controlled, and the consequences of genetic or metabolic disruption of pathways. The elucidation of the genetic code (The Human Genome Project), the development of pharmaceuticals to treat disease, the study of protein structure and function, and the development and use of biotechnology are examples of the research undertaken by biochemists.

Major in Biochemistry (BSc)

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The Major in Biochemistry will provide students with a strong background in biochemistry, biology and chemistry so that they will be well-placed to develop their interests and move on to graduate school, or work in allied fields such as microbiology, environmental sciences, plant science, food science, pharmacology, pharmaceutical sciences, industrial applications of molecular techniques and biotechnology. This program is also suitable for students who would like a career in health or medical sciences, molecular diagnostics and government agencies dealing with medicinal biochemistry. The program is composed of three options leading to a Major in Biochemistry. There is a strong lab component to the program, which is essential for students working in this area. The program also allows for the students to do a directed studies research project with various professors in both chemistry and biology.

There are three options in the Biochemistry Major:

  1. The General Biochemistry Option provides students with strong grounding in both biology and chemistry, during the first three years, and then offers specialized advanced topics courses in proteins, nucleic acids, bio-membranes, and biotechnology.
  2. The Wine and Plant option provides the students with a strong background in plant biochemistry and is suitable for students who wish to pursue a career in enology, viticulture, plant science and food science.
  3. The Medical Biochemistry concentration takes the students into the medical aspects of biochemistry including pharmacology, medical microbiology and virology and the biochemical basis of disease. This concentration will be of interest to students who would like to do medical research in the future or those who would like to work in medical or allied health sciences.

Courses in Biochemistry

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Last reviewed 3/18/2011 3:10:02 PM

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