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Chemistry & Biochemistry

Applicable for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Chemistry & Biochemistry Website

Professors: GROVER, MEYER; Associate Professors: BOWMAN, BRASUEL, DAUGHERTY, DOUNAY, VAGHOO (Chair); Assistant Professors: FAHRENKRUG, KISUNZU; Lecturer: HARRIS; Emeritus BOWER, JONES, LINDEMAN

Major Requirements

Students are encouraged to choose a specific sub discipline and focus in related upper-level courses. Upper-level courses in cognate disciplines that fit specific sub disciplines of chemistry may be substituted as equivalent if approved by the department. In addition, every senior must enroll in Chemistry 490 Senior Seminar. Computational approaches, including programming and statistical analysis, are integrated into the majors, but more experience may be useful.   

Research Blocks

A total of three mentored research blocks may be taken for credit.   However, only one Chemistry 201 may be taken for credit, as it is intended for students who want to start research early, and have no prior background in research. 

Chemistry Major

A chemistry major must receive credit for courses equivalent to Chemistry 107, 108; Mathematics 126, 129; Physics 241, 242; Chemistry 241, 250, 275, 266 or 365, and 382. One of these five chemistry courses may be replaced by an upper-level chemistry course or an approved upper-level course in a sub discipline or cognate discipline. Students must take three upper-level courses chosen from: Chemistry 251, 342, 351, 366, 367, 383, 475, 480, one credit of (CH201, 300-level researcha or 400-level researchb) and other approved upper-level chemistry courses that contain a significant laboratory component. Chemistry 490 Senior Seminar is required. The Department recommends research for all students, especially those intending to pursue graduate study.

The information listed on this page is only a summary; students should check with their advisor to ensure they have fulfilled all requirements. Full requirements for the major can be found in the Colorado College Catalog of Courses for the year in which you declared your major. Download a PDF file of the following requirements.

Requirements for Chemistry Major and
Suggested Year of Completion (14.50)

Requirements for ACS Chemistry Major and
Suggested Year of Completion (15.50)

First Year
CH107, CH108
MA126, MA129

First Year
CH107, CH108
MA126, MA129

Second and Third Year
PC241, PC242
CH250: Organic I
CH241: Analytical
CH275: Inorganic I
CH266: Fundamentals of Physical Chemistry or CH365: Biophysical
CH382 (requires CH251): Biochemistry I

One of these courses can be replaced by an additional upper-level course in a sub discipline or cognate discipline.

Second and Third Year
PC 241, PC242
CH250: Organic I
CH 251 (before CH382): Organic II
CH241: Analytical
CH275: Inorganic
CH266: Fundamentals of Physical Chemistry or CH365: Biophysical
CH382 (requires CH251): Biochemistry I
 

 

Fourth Year
Three In-Depth Courses: can be from any specific sub discipline or a mixture of organic, inorganic, analytical, biochemistry or physical.

CH201, 300-level researcha or 400-level researchb
CH251 (before CH382): Organic II
CH342: Instrumental
CH351: Organic III

CH366: Physical I
CH367: Physical II
CH383: Biochemistry II
CH475: Inorganic II
CH480: Advanced Metabolism (with lab)


Upper-level courses in cognate disciplines (with significant lab hours) may also be approved by the Department.

CH490: Senior Seminar is Required

a from 301, 302, 303, 304, 305
b from 401, 402, 403, 404, 405

Fourth Year
Three In-Depth Courses: can be from any specific sub discipline or a mixture of organic, inorganic, analytical, biochemistry or physical.

CH201, 300-level researcha or 400-level researchb (with paper)
CH342: Instrumental
CH351: Organic III

CH 366: Physical I
CH367: Physical II
CH383: Biochemistry II
CH475: Inorganic II
CH480: Advanced Metabolism (with lab)


Upper-level courses in cognate disciplines (with significant lab hours) may also be approved by the Department.

CH490: Senior Seminar is Required

a from 301, 302, 303, 304, 305
b from 401, 402, 403, 404, 405

 

Biochemistry Major

A biochemistry major must receive credit for courses equivalent to Chemistry 107, 108; Mathematics 126, 129; Physics 241, 242; Molecular Biology 131, 201; Chemistry 250, 251, 382, 383 and either 241 or 266 or 275; and one credit of (CH201, 300-level researcha or 400-level researchb or MB399 with department approval), and two additional credits from the upper-level courses: Chemistry 342, 351, 366, 367, 400, 475, 480, Molecular Biology 350, 355, 360, BE 344, 345. Chemistry 490 Senior Seminar is required. Additional upper-level biochemistry or molecular biology courses when taught with a significant relevant laboratory component may also be approved by the Department. 

The information listed on this page is only a summary; students should check with their advisor to ensure they have fulfilled all requirements. Full requirements for the major can be found in the Colorado College Catalog of Courses for the year in which you declared your major.  Download a PDF file of the following requirements.

Requirements for Biochemistry Major
and Suggested Year of Completion
(16.50)

Requirements for ACS Certified Biochemistry
Major and Suggested Year of Completion
(16.50)

First Year
CH107, CH108
MA126, MA129
MB131

First Year
CH107, CH108
MA126, MA129
 

Second and Third Year
PC241, PC242
MB201 (Lab in Cell and Genetics)
CH250: Organic I
CH251: Organic II
CH382 (requires CH251): Biochemistry I
CH241: Analytical OR CH266: Fundamentals of Physical Chemistry OR CH275: Inorganic I

Second and Third Year
PC241, PC242
CH250: Organic I
CH251: Organic II
CH382 (requires CH251): Biochemistry I
CH275: Inorganic I
CH241: Analytical
CH 266: Fundamentals of Physical Chemistry

Fourth Year
CH383: Biochemistry II
CH201, 300-level researcha or 400-level researchb or MB399 (with Department approval)
 

Two In-Depth Courses:
In Biochemistry/Chemistry or Cognate
disciplines with significant lab
component 
may be chosen from the
following:

CH342: Instrumental
CH351: Organic III

CH366: Physical I
CH367: Physical II
CH400: Topics courses upon approval
CH475: Inorganic II
CH480: Advanced Metabolism (with lab)
BE344: SEM
BE345: TEM
MB350-Special Topics Lab Research
MB355-Laboratory Advanced Genetics
MB360-Laboratory in Molecular Biology
 

Other upper-level courses in cognate disciplines (with significant lab hours) may also be approved.

CH490: Senior Seminar is Required

a from 301, 302, 303, 304, 305
b from 401, 402, 403, 404, 405

Fourth Year
CH383: Biochemistry II
CH201, 300-level researcha or 400-level researchb with Paper or MB399 (with Department approval)

Two In-Depth Courses:
In Biochemistry/Chemistry or Cognate
disciplines with significant lab
component 
may be chosen from the
following:

CH342: Instrumental
CH351: Organic III

CH366: Physical I
CH367: Physical II
CH400: Topics courses upon approval
CH475: Inorganic II
CH480: Advanced Metabolism (with lab)
BE344: SEM
BE345: TEM
BE366: Comparative Animal Physiology
MB350-Special Topics Lab Research
MB355-Laboratory Advanced Genetics
MB360-Laboratory in Molecular Biology

Other upper-level courses in cognate disciplines (with significant lab hours) may also be approved.

CH490: Senior Seminar is Required

a from 301, 302, 303, 304, 305
b from 401, 402, 403, 404, 405

Distinction in Chemistry and Biochemistry

Students interested in graduation with Distinction in Chemistry or Biochemistry should discuss the requirements with a Department advisor by spring of their junior year. Distinction involves research and a significant thesis or publishable manuscript. Students interested in receiving American Chemical Society certification should also consult an advisor within the department.

Minor Requirements

To be awarded a minor, students must receive a total of 6 units of credit in the Department (from six one-unit courses that are comprised of either lecture or lecture + lab). A chemistry minor must receive credit for courses equivalent to Chemistry 107, 108, 250, and three additional (one unit) credits selected from Chemistry 251, 241, 266, 275, 382 or other 300- and 400-level chemistry and biochemistry courses in this catalog (with their prerequisites). A biochemistry minor must receive credit for Chemistry 382 as one of the three courses taken beyond Chemistry 250. The 300-level researcha and 400-level researchb experiences do not qualify for the minor.

a from 301, 302, 303, 304, 305
b from 401, 402, 403, 404, 405

Chemistry/Biochemistry Minor

Requirements for Chemistry Minor

Requirements for Biochemistry Minor 

CH107, CH108

CH250: Organic I

Three additional credits selected from:

CH251: Organic II

CH241: Analytical

CH266: Fundamentals of Physical Chemistry

CH275: Inorganic

CH382: Biochemistry I

Or 300-400 level chemistry courses 

CH107, CH108

CH250: Organic I

CH251: Organic II

CH382: Biochemistry I

One additional credit selected from:

CH241: Analytical

CH266: Fundamentals of Physical Chemistry

CH275: Inorganic

Or 300-400 level chemistry courses 

Courses

Chemistry

Selected topical areas, such as forensic science, materials science, environmental science, history of chemistry, chemistry and art, or nutritional, medicinal and consumer chemistry taught at the introductory level from a chemical perspective. Intended for (but not typically limited to) non-science majors, these courses will usually include moderate lab or fieldwork and independent or group research projects. Some topics may give Scientific Inquiry and Natural Science Lab credit. 1 or 2 units - Department (Not offered 2020-21).

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Selected topics in chemistry taught at the introductory level. units. (Not offered 2020-21).

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107 emphasizes the basic principles of atomic structure, periodic properties, molecular structure and bonding, chemical reactions, and stoichiometry. Laboratory included. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Quantitative Reasoning requirement.

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108 emphasizes kinetics, thermodynamics, equilibrium, and solution chemistry of acid-base and redox reactions. Laboratory included. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Quantitative Reasoning requirement.

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Basic concepts of organic structure and reactions. Nomenclature, molecular structure, physical properties and spectroscopy (NMR & IR) of organic compounds. Laboratory included. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement. (Summer only 2020-21).

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An examination of the tools available for studying models of chemical systems. FORTRAN programming, Evolution Algorithms, Neural Networks, Molecular Modeling software, and Computer Graphics will all be introduced. This is a project based course with topics chosen to match the level of individual students' chemistry backgrounds. (Not offered 2020-21).

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An introduction to research design and mentored use of scientific equipment. Students will complete lab safety and ethics training. Disciplinary-based literature research and interpretation will be emphasized as part of the research process. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook or appropriate data records, analyze and interpret data, and produce a final scientific report. 1 unit

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Independent experimental practice research in areas such as biochemistry, organic chemistry, physical chemistry, inorganic chemistry, catalysis, analytical chemistry and environmental chemistry performed in affiliation with a staff member. A total of three units of Investigations may be taken for credit. Extended format course.

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This class will deepen understanding of basic concepts important for success in organic chemistry: Lewis structures, hybridized atomic orbitals, VSEPR theory, resonance structures, and acid-base chemistry. An introduction to drawing and interpreting three-dimensional bond-line representations of organic molecules will also be provided

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A focus on the thermodynamics and kinetics of pollutants in the air, water, and soil, as well as some toxicology. Statistical methods and the analysis of environmental samples using instrumental methods as well as techniques in chemical waste treatment are covered. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World requirement. (Not offered 2020-21).

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Quantitative and qualitative techniques applied to univariate analytical, bioanalytical and/or environmental problems. Basic techniques of separation, spectroscopy, and electrochemistry are introduced through studies of chemical speciation and the activity of chemicals in aqueous solution and guided projects tailored to students’ interest areas. Laboratory included. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World requirement.

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Basic concepts necessary for understanding chemical reactions. Nomenclature, structure, physical properties and spectroscopy of simple organic molecules. Fundamentals of thermodynamics and reaction kinetics. Laboratory included. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World requirement.

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Characteristic reactions of common organic functional groups. Mechanisms, rates and equilibria. The course depends heavily on concepts developed in 250. Laboratory included. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World requirement.

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Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement. (Summer only 2020-21).

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A concise introduction to the major principles of physical chemistry (quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics, thermodynamics, and chemical kinetics). Also, provides the mathematical and physical foundations for these subjects and preparation for CH366 or CH367. Laboratory included. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement.

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Atomic structure, models and theories of bonding, bond types underlying metals, semiconductors, ionic solids and materials. Lewis acid-base interactions, coordination complexes, associated reaction mechanisms, and other aspects of transition metal chemistry. Atomic-level origins of special material properties such as ferromagnetism and electroluminescence.

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Selected by the student with the advice of the instructor. Class and laboratory arranged. No more than six of these courses, i.e., 1.5 units, can be counted toward graduation. Only a total of three units of Investigations in Chemistry and Special Topics in Chemistry combined can be counted toward graduation.

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This course provides opportunity for topical work. No more than three units of Investigations, Topics, and Advanced Topics may be taken for department credit. (Not offered 2020-21).

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Research on an on-going project in the laboratory of the professor. Students will read discipline-specific literature and contribute to research design. Students will learn experimental design and execution, as well as troubleshooting skills. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1.0 unit

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Research on an on-going project in the laboratory of the professor. Students will read discipline-specific literature and contribute to research design. Students will learn experimental design and execution, as well as troubleshooting skills. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1 unit

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Research on an on-going project in the laboratory of the professor. Students will read discipline-specific literature and contribute to research design. Students will learn experimental design and execution, as well as troubleshooting skills. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1 unit.

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Research on an on-going project in the laboratory of the professor. Students will read discipline-specific literature and contribute to research design. Students will learn experimental design and execution, as well as troubleshooting skills. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1 unit.

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Research on an on-going project in the laboratory of the professor. Students will read discipline-specific literature and contribute to research design. Students will learn experimental design and execution, as well as troubleshooting skills. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1 unit.

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The principles and theory of modern instrumental analysis taught through topics selected from electrochemistry, spectroscopy and chromatography. The design and analysis of optimized experiments will be illustrated through research-oriented topics that also teach the instrumental methods being emphasized.

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Application of structural concepts and functional group reactions to the synthesis of organic compounds. Factors in the design of multistep syntheses such as functional group transformation, elaboration of carbon chains, protecting groups and reaction stereochemistry. Examples from the literature of laboratory syntheses of complex molecules such as steroids, alkaloids and pharmaceuticals will be examined. Laboratory included. Research projects requiring novel syntheses are a major component of this course. Students are required to propose multi-step syntheses and then work to complete proposed syntheses in the laboratory. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement.

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Application of thermodynamics and kinetics to the study of organic reaction mechanisms. Elucidation of mechanisms via the use of molecular orbital theory, isotope effects, substituent effects and linear free-energy relationships, solvent effects, characterization of reactive intermediates, gas-phase chemistry and computations. Laboratory included. (Either 351 or 352 will count as the advanced organic chemistry requirement for the chemistry major, or as an elective for the biochemistry major. The two courses, however, are not the same and both can be applied toward graduation requirements.) (Not offered 2020-21).

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Thermodynamics, chemical kinetics and dynamics as applied to living systems and biopolymers. Homogeneous and heterogeneous equilibria and chemical potential as a driving force in biological reactions. Measurement and interpretation of rate behavior in biochemical systems. Diffusion, osmotic pressure and sedimentation. Laboratory focusing on biophysical experiments and error analysis included. (Not offered 2020-21).

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Topics in physical chemistry dealing with the bulk properties of energy and matter. These topics include the properties of real and ideal gases, the laws of thermodynamics and their application to chemical systems, phase and chemical equilibria, and chemical kinetics. Laboratory included. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement. (Not offered 2020-21).

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Topics in physical chemistry dealing with quantum behavior and elementary statistical mechanics. These topics include analyzing spectroscopic data and computational approaches to quantum-mechanical systems. Laboratory included. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement.

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An introduction to modern biochemistry using fundamental chemical principles in the study of complex natural systems. Topics covered are proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, bioenergetics, enzymology, and metabolism with an emphasis on interrelationships between metabolic pathways and regulation. Laboratory included. Limited to 16 students.

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Study of nucleic acids organization and structure, DNA replication and transcription, RNA processing and protein biosynthesis, and the regulation of gene expression. A special emphasis on the use of the original literature. Laboratory included. Limited to 16 students.

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Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement. (Summer only 2020-21).

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This course is designed for students who wish to tutor general and organic chemistry. It includes methods for improved listening skills, assessing student content knowledge, teaching problem solving, and conceptual analysis. Methods used in the course include peer tutoring, experiential exercises, journal writing, and supervised tutoring. The class is recommended for those students desiring chemistry department payment for tutoring.

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Selected by the student with the advice of the instructor. Class and laboratory arranged. No more than six of these courses, i.e., 1.5 units, can be counted toward graduation. Only a total of three units of Investigations in Chemistry and Special Topics in Chemistry combined can be counted toward graduation.

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The course will examine computer assisted modeling of molecules and reactions of interest for organic, inorganic, and biochemistry. Model systems will include molecular mechanics, quantum theory based semi-empirical, ab initio Hartree-Fock, and density functional methods. Requires Spartan Student® software and a laptop, either Windows® or Intel®-based Mac®. 0.25 unit

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This course provides opportunity for advanced topical work. Topics will vary from year to year. No more than three units of Investigations, Topics and Advanced Topics may be taken for department credit.

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Complete an on-going research project that was initiated in CH301. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1 unit

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Complete an on-going research project that was initiated in CH302. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1 unit

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Complete an on-going research project that was initiated in CH303. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1 unit

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Complete an on-going research project that was initiated in CH304. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1 unit

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Complete an on-going research project that was initiated in CH305. Students will maintain a laboratory notebook, or appropriate data records, and analyze and interpret data. An ACS style paper is required upon completion of the block, in which their data is summarized and future experiments are proposed. Research at this level may contribute to research presented in CH490: Senior Seminar. 1 unit

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An introduction to medicinal chemistry with a focus on current approaches toward the design of new drugs and optimization of their pharmacological, metabolic, and toxicological profiles. Principles of biochemistry, molecular biology, and organic chemistry will be applied to the interpretation, analysis, and critique of recent primary medicinal chemistry literature. An overview of the drug discovery, development, and approval process will include case studies of recently approved drugs. 1 unit.

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One of the following topics will be investigated in both the literature and the laboratory: (1) Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy; (2) Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy; (3) Mass Spectrometry/Gas Chromatography; (4) Spectroscopic Methods in Structure Determination. Extended-format course. (Not offered 2020-21).

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The detailed interpretation of molecular structure and spectra. Quantum theory and chemical statistics are applied to the interactions of electromagnetic radiation with molecules. Laboratory included. (Not offered 2020-21).

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This class covers the structure and function of RNA from a biochemical perspective. There are many different large and small RNA that are present in the cell that perform key functions in the cell from splicing, protein synthesis, to regulation. Structure and function of RNA and the techniques used to study these will be discussed using current literature. Biological functions of ribozyme and non-coding RNA will be studied with an eye towards understanding the development of new techniques in molecular biology for artificial manipulations of cellular systems, drug development, and human genome manipulation. Ethical challenges associated with RNA-based technologies will also be discussed. The course is based in current literature with substantial independent and group learning components. A research-based laboratory is included.

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Application of fundamental inorganic reactions and bonding models to the detailed study of topics such as, but not limited to, coordination compounds, organometallic compounds, ionic compounds, metal clusters, inorganic polymers, bioinorganic reactions and single-molecule magnets. Emphasis on characterization of inorganic molecules/materials and analysis of spectroscopic data, as well as the use and analysis of primary literature. Laboratory included.

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One of the following topics will be investigated in both the literature and the laboratory: (1) Electronic Spectra; (2) Magnetic Properties; (3) Biochemical Aspects; (4) Metal Cluster Compounds; (5) Ligand Substitution Reactions; (6) Electron Transfer Reactions. Extended-format course. (Not offered 2020-21).

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Investigation of the regulation and energy transductions in protein metabolism and cholesterol synthesis, with emphasis on integration of material with carbohydrate and lipid metabolism. Special emphasis will be on presentation of scientific literature related to inborn errors of metabolism. Laboratory included.

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An adjunct course spread out over the whole year in which guest lecturers and juniors and seniors present their independent research (either literature or laboratory) to the department in both oral an poster disciplinary presentation formats.. One semester required in the senior year for both chemistry and biochemistry majors.

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Selected by the student with the advice of the instructor. Class and laboratory arranged. No more than six of these courses, i.e., 1.5 units, can be counted toward graduation. Only a total of three units of Investigations in Chemistry and Special Topics in Chemistry combined can be counted toward graduation.

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A thesis topic to be chosen by student with advice from a member (or members) of the department. Upon presentation of thesis proposal by the student, department faculty will authorize or deny registration in 499.

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Last updated: 01/05/2021