Biochemistry at Muhlenberg College

BCM 441 Course Description

BCM 441 is a spring semster course that serves as an advanced capstone experience for biochemistry majors. Two semesters of Organic Chemistry and BCM 220 are prerequisite. BCM 441 is typically taken in the 3rd or 4th year of the biochemistry major. BCM 441 was previously offered as CHM 453.

BCM 441 is concerned with the content, presentation and evaluation of modern biochemistry. We discuss advanced topics in modern biochemistry within the context of cellular metabolism. It is through metabolism that stored nutrients, ingested foods and the energy of light are converted to complex biomolecules and the energy to drive cellular processes. While studying metabolism, we look at the process by which biochemistry is practiced in the laboratory and published to the scientific community. We learn to evaluate original research articles and apply the findings to a biochemical problem. We also focus on how the study of metabolism is relevant and applicable to medicine and biotechnology.

Biochemistry and the study of metabolism is an astonishingly fast moving area of science. The advent of the genomic era has made biochemistry an informational science as well. The most recent advances have enabled the design of new drugs, the understanding of complex disease states such as Alzheimer’s disease and HIV, and progress toward the utilization of microorganisms and plants in biotechnology. Be prepared to engage in new science and apply your own original thinking to current biochemical problems.