Course Descriptions


This course is intended for Life Science majors or those with a strong background in the Biological Sciences.

This course may be used to fulfill the elective requirements of the Biological Sciences major.

Offered:  Spring

Credits:  3

Prerequisites:  General Biology 01:119:115-116, 117.  

Course Description: The goal of the course is to learn about the many aspects of sickle cell disease through guest lectures, lectures by the coordinator, a paper and readings during the course of the class. Early in the semester students will decide on a research topic of mutual interest related to some aspect of SCA. Students will present their findings to the class.  By the end of the semester, students will submit a ten page (minimum) fully referenced term paper on their topic. 


INTRODUCTION TO COURSE                                                                                                            

2  CELL BIOLOGY METHODS - microscopy, fractionation                                                  

MEMBRANES - composition, fluidity, organelles, phosphoinositides, membrane proteins, channels,


 4 CYTOSKELETON - INTRO AND MICROTUBULES                                                                                                                                                                                                              

 5  EXAM 1 (CUMULATIVE)                                                                                           


 7 SECRETORY SYSTEM - signal peptide, ER, lipid synth, glycosylation, ERAD                     

SECRETORY SYSTEM - Rab/Arf-GTPases, budding, fusion                                             

SECRETORY SYSTEM PAPER DISCUSSION                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

10 EXAM 2 (CUMULATIVE)                                                                                         

11 ORGANELLAR TRANSPORT - nuclear import/export, Ran GTPase, mito import, peroxisomes

12 NUCLEAR TRANSPORT PAPER DISCUSSION                                                             

13 ENDOCYTOSIS AND MEMBRANE TRANSPORT - uptake and clathrin, endosomal pathways and sorting, Rab cascades                                                                                                          

14 ENDOCYTOSIS AND MEMBRANE TRANSPORT - recycling pathways, escrt-mediated degradation, lysosomes, autophagy                                                                                                               

15 EXAM 3 (CUMULATIVE)                                                                                         

16 ENDOCYTOSIS PAPER DISCUSSION                                                                          

17 EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX - intro, neuronal pathfinding                                             

18 CELL SIGNALING - types of signaling, genetic epistasis in signaling, EGF signaling, Notch signaling

19 MATRIX and SIGNALING PAPER DISCUSSION                                                                                                                                                                                                                

20 EXAM 4 (CUMULATIVE)                                                                                         

21 Smooth muscle and nonmuscle contraction/ myosin phosphorylation/ Rho-rho-kinase signaling

22 Cell motility/ actin polymerization at the cell front and actomyosin contraction at the rear/ signaling for

                             directional migration/ role of endocytosis in cell migration

23 cytokinesis/ PLK1 MKLP Rac-GAP Rho signaling/ myosin contraction/ exocytosis                                                                                                                                                                            

24 EXAM 5 (CUMULATIVE)                                                                                         

25 Dendritic cell maturation and chemotaxis/ signaling via CCR7                                           

26 Dendritic cell antigen presentation/ MHC-I, MHC-II/ endocytosis/exocytosis, immunological synapse/ DC T-cell interactions                                

27 Cancer immunotherapy-checkpoint therapy                                                                     

28 Cancer immunotherapy-T-cell adaptive transfer/ CAR-T, TCR-T                                                                                                                                                                                        


Course URL:  

A Site will be used

Course Satisfies Learning Goals

1. Students should demonstrate an understanding of the knowledge that is needed to begin biomedical research and that is required for post-graduate exams and studies.

2. Students should demonstrate the ability to find and evaluate information about specific biological systems or problems.

3. Students should demonstrate the ability to design experiments and critically analyze data.

Exams, Assignments, and Grading Policy:

Grading and Evaluation:

The oral and written papers will be 80% of the grade. There will also be several assignments that students will have over the course of the semester dealing with the readings (15%). Attendance is mandatory (5%).  Unexcused absences will result in lowering of the final grade.

Course Materials:  The required text is “The troubled dream of genetic medicine” by K. Wailoo and S. Pemberton published by Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 2006. The book is only three chapters and the conclusion. It can be obtained online or as ISBN 0-8018-8326-1.  There will be additional readings posted on Sakai.

Course Closed?  There is no Wait List. Please continue to monitor Web-reg for openings.

Faculty: Prof.Barth Grant

** All information is subject to change at the discretion of the course coordinator.