Fall 2013

Chemical Basis of Biological Processes

Listed in: Biology, as BIOL-131  |  Chemistry, as CHEM-131

Formerly listed as: CHEM-03


James A. Hebda (Section 01)


(Offered as CHEM 131 and BIOL 131.) What are the natural laws that describe how biological processes actually work?  This course will use examples from biology such as human physiology or cellular signaling to illustrate the interplay between fundamental chemical principles and biological function.  We will explore how bonding plays a central role in assembling simple biological building blocks such as sugars, amino acids, and fatty acids to form complex carbohydrates, proteins, and membranes.  What underlying thermodynamic and kinetic principles guide systems to biological homeostasis or reactivity?  What is pH, and how are proton gradients used to generate or change an organism's response?  Emphasis is on using mathematics and physical sciences to understand biological functions. Three classroom hours and three hours of laboratory per week.

Enrollment is limited to 15 first-year students who are interested in science or premedical study, who are recommended to begin with either MATH 105 or MATH 111 (Intensive), and who are enrolled in a Mathematics course but not in CHEM 151.  Admission with consent of the instructor.  Fall semester.  Visiting Lecturer Hebda.

If Overenrolled: As noted in course description


Lab Science Course


2022-23: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2009, Fall 2010, Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013