CHEM 440 - Biophysics of Diseases
Fall 2021, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: Chemistry (CHEM)
Department: LSA Chemistry
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Requirements & Distribution:
Waitlist Capacity:
Advisory Prerequisites:
Students should have knowledge of physical chemistry as covered in courses such as: CHEM 230, CHEM 260 or BIOPHYS/CHEM/PHYSICS 370, or PHYSICS 390/391.
This course counts toward the 60 credits of math/science required for a Bachelor of Science degree.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:


The course will introduce to the students most commonly used biophysical methods for studying the molecular mechanism of complex diseases and therapy development. The emphasis will be on protein misfolding diseases (Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and prion), but diseases like cancer, viral (HIV) and bacterial infections will be also discussed. Classical biophysical methods like x-ray crystallography, NMR and cryoEM will be discussed, as well as, the most recent developments of the cutting-edge methods. Some lectures will be presented by invited speakers who will talk about their disease studies for which they apply a combination of biophysical, biochemical and molecular techniques.

Course Requirements:

For Fall 2020: testing for the course will be synchronous and will consist of multiple choice, short answer, and assay questions that will be submitted via Canvas.

Biweekly problem-solving homework assignments, assigned readings, weekly quizzes, two exams (20 pts each), one final paper (5-7 pages)that critically explores the biophysical basis for a student-chosen human disease and discusses how an in-depth biophysical understanding of the disease process can help in the rational design of therapeutics. Students will also present their final papers in class (30 pts ).

Intended Audience:

Upper-level undergraduates and graduate students in the biological, biophysical, and biochemical sciences.

Class Format:

This course welcomes students who choose to participate entirely online but will be offered in a hybrid format with some in-person instruction. The weekly lectures will be synchronous through Bluejeans/Zoom. The lectures will be also recorded and made available asynchronously. The classes will also be archived with Kultura video.


CHEM 440 - Biophysics of Diseases
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 In Person
MW 8:30AM - 10:00AM

Textbooks/Other Materials

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