Molecular Biology and Biochemistry: From DNA to Enzymes

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This course is under review for 2021. Course registration will open to accepted students once courses are confirmed.

Course Description

Molecular biology and biochemistry are two closely related fields where the properties of key biological molecules, such as proteins and DNA, and how they interact with each other in living organisms are studied. Research in these areas has become so successful at explaining living processes that it is used in almost all areas of the life sciences from medicine to the study of plants. Researchers play an integral role in the discovery of drugs that help prevent and cure diseases. Biochemists and molecular biologists also work in forensic crime labs, agriculture, biotechnology, hospitals, scientific law, and education.

This laboratory intensive course will give students the opportunity to study and execute fundamental techniques in medical research. The class first focuses on the purification, manipulation, and genotyping of the student's own DNA. We then transition to proteins, where fluorescent proteins are expressed and purified in bacteria. The last section of the class focuses on enzymes. Experiments will be performed to measure how well enzymes involved in lactose intolerance and biofuel production work under a variety of environmental conditions.

In addition to the laboratory work, students will learn basic biology and biochemical concepts, read primary literature, and learn about the modern day applications of molecular biology and biochemical experiments to research and disease. Course work includes laboratory reports, as well as a research paper and a group presentation on an advanced biochemistry technique.

Prerequisites: Completion of a high school biology course is required.

Course Information

  • Course Code: CECH0905
  • Length: 3 weeks
  • Supplemental Fee: $125

Program Information

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Brown’s Pre-College Program in the liberal arts and sciences, offering over 200 non-credit courses, one- to four-weeks long, taught on Brown’s campus. For students completing grades 9-12 by June 2021.

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