Understanding and manipulating biological processes on a molecular level...
Chemical Biology has been designed with two purposes in mind. 

First, it provides biology students with an appropriate chemical foundation by focusing on those principles of inorganic and organic chemistry required for an understanding of cell function at the molecular level and the way in which biological catalysts can direct and facilitate these transformations. These principles are presented entirely in the biological context in which the student is likely to require them later in their career.
Secondly, this biological context is of significant value to chemistry students, giving them a thorough knowledge of their discipline.

What do I do in this course?
CHEM2502 provides a firm knowledge base of the molecular basis of biological processes, the function of enzymes and the spectroscopic techniques required to probe biological systems:
  • Study the reactivity and transformation of the functional groups central to biological molecules such as carbohydrates, proteins/peptides and nucleic acids.
  • Develop an understanding of the chemical transformations involved in major metabolic pathways (eg TCA cycle, fatty acid synthesis, terpene biosynthesis) and so be able to formulate ways of manipulating these pathways on a molecular level.
  • Study how enzymes operate and the role of co-enzymes and vitamins in efficient enzyme function.
  • Gain skills in spectroscopic methods used to study biological molecules and their interactions (eg Nuclear magnetic resonance, mass spectrometry, ultraviolet spectroscopy)
Career relevance of this course:
Builds a multidisciplinary approach to problem solving.
The Australian biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries are currently suffering a critical shortage of workers skilled in chemistry and chemical techniques. A graduate with core chemistry knowledge and skills coupled this with an understanding of biological systems and how chemistry can be applied to manipulate and understand biological systems they would be a rare and highly sort after person in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries.
Program planning and advice:
The course coordinator recommends CHEM2052 as a key course for those undertaking the Chemical Biology stream of the Chemical Sciences dual major and for a variety of students wishing to pursue a major in the Biological Sciences.  The course coordinator also highly recommends this course for inclusion in the Chemistry major.

CHEM2052 leads to:
  • CHEM3008 Medicinal Chemistry
  • CHEM3004 Determination of Molecular Structure
  • CHEM3010 Bio-Inorganic chemistry
  • BIOC3000 Biomolecular structure and function
  • BIOC3001 Metabolism and nutrition
  • BIOC3004 Structural biology: Macromolecular structure
  • BIOT3002 Drug design and development
  • BIOM3009 Pharmacokinetics and molecular toxicology
  • BIOM3402 Advanced Pharmacology
  • SCIE3012Introduction toResearch
  • SCIE3044Vacation Project

For an official description of this course, including prerequisites and contact hours, and for the official rules of programs, including majors requirements, see the UQ Programs & Courses website.