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Biochemistry provides a foundation to our understanding of all cellular life.  By combining aspects of biology and chemistry, this course studies modern biochemistry at the molecular level, to enable students to understand the biological processes that influence all living organisms. 

The Biochemistry degree offered here at Northumbria University provides a foundation to our understanding of all cellular life.  

As a Biochemistry graduate, you will leave Northumbria University with the skills to prepare you for a future of life-long learning and a choice of careers, across a variety of scientific discipline areas including:

• The chemical and pharmaceutical industries 

• Food and nutrition industries 

• Healthcare industry

• Research and academia

The placement option on the course, which takes place between the second and final years, has allowed our students to work alongside industry leaders  such as GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Proctor & Gamble. 

To discover more about the Biochemistry degree available at Northumbria University, contact us today on 0191 406 0901 or register for updates.

 

 

Biochemistry provides a foundation to our understanding of all cellular life.  By combining aspects of biology and chemistry, this course studies modern biochemistry at the molecular level, to enable students to understand the biological processes that influence all living organisms. 

The Biochemistry degree offered here at Northumbria University provides a foundation to our understanding of all cellular life.  

As a Biochemistry graduate, you will leave Northumbria University with the skills to prepare you for a future of life-long learning and a choice of careers, across a variety of scientific discipline areas including:

• The chemical and pharmaceutical industries 

• Food and nutrition industries 

• Healthcare industry

• Research and academia

The placement option on the course, which takes place between the second and final years, has allowed our students to work alongside industry leaders  such as GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Proctor & Gamble. 

To discover more about the Biochemistry degree available at Northumbria University, contact us today on 0191 406 0901 or register for updates.

 

 

Course Information

UCAS Code
F115

Level of Study
Undergraduate

Mode of Study
3 years full-time or 4 years full-time with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department
Applied Sciences

Location
City Campus, Northumbria University

City
Newcastle

Start
September 2021 or September 2022

Fee Information

Module Information

Department / Applied Sciences

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Study

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Entry Requirements 2021/22

Standard Entry

120 UCAS Tariff points

From a combination of acceptable Level 3 qualifications which may include: A-level, BTEC Diplomas/Extended Diplomas, Scottish and Irish Highers, Access to HE Diplomas, or the International Baccalaureate.

Find out how many points your qualifications are worth by using the UCAS Tariff calculator: www.ucas.com/ucas/tariff-calculator

Subject Requirements:

Grade B in A-level Biology or Chemistry (with both Biology and Chemistry having been studied), or recognised equivalents.

GCSE Requirements:

Applicants will need Maths and English Language at minimum grade 4/C, or an equivalent.

Additional Requirements:

There are no additional requirements for this course.

International Qualifications:

We welcome applicants with a range of qualifications which may not match those shown above.

If you have qualifications from outside the UK, find out what you need by visiting www.northumbria.ac.uk/yourcountry

English Language Requirements:

International applicants shoud have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0 with 5.5 in each component (or an approved equivalent*).

*The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades in our English Language section: www.northumbria.ac.uk/englishqualifications

Entry Requirements 2022/23

Standard Entry

120 UCAS Tariff points

From a combination of acceptable Level 3 qualifications which may include: A-level, BTEC Diplomas/Extended Diplomas, Scottish and Irish Highers, Access to HE Diplomas, or the International Baccalaureate.

Find out how many points your qualifications are worth by using the UCAS Tariff calculator: www.ucas.com/ucas/tariff-calculator

Subject Requirements:

Grade B in A-level Biology or Chemistry (with both Biology and Chemistry having been studied), or recognised equivalents.

GCSE Requirements:

Applicants will need Maths and English Language at minimum grade 4/C, or an equivalent.

Additional Requirements:

There are no additional requirements for this course.

International Qualifications:

We welcome applicants with a range of qualifications which may not match those shown above.

If you have qualifications from outside the UK, find out what you need by visiting www.northumbria.ac.uk/yourcountry

English Language Requirements:

International applicants shoud have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0 with 5.5 in each component (or an approved equivalent*).

*The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades in our English Language section: www.northumbria.ac.uk/englishqualifications

Fees and Funding 2021/22 Entry

UK Fee in Year 1: £9,250

* The maximum tuition fee that we are permitted to charge for UK students is set by government. Tuition fees may increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, these are subject to government regulations and in line with inflation.


EU Fee in Year 1: £16,000

International Fee in Year 1: £16,000

 

Click here for UK, EU and International Scholarships scholarship, fees, and funding information.

ADDITIONAL COSTS

Laboratory equipment such as spatula, lab book, marker pens and a scientific calculator are required and should cost no more than £25. You may be required to print some documents this should be no more than £10 per academic year. Optional additional costs may include purchase of textbooks if students want personal copies rather than library texts, and if students wish to carry out some additional printing at their own cost (Cost of textbooks range from £80-100 new or from £30 second hand).

Fees and Funding 2022/23 Entry

UK Fee in Year 1*: £9,250

* This is the tuition fee for 2021/22 entry, and the maximum permitted to charge UK students as per Government Regulations. Government are yet to announce 2022/23 fees, if there is a change fees will be adjusted accordingly.


EU Fee in Year 1: £16,500

International Fee in Year 1: £16,500


Scholarships for 22/23 have not yet been announced. Please keep checking for updates.

For information on the range of Scholarships offered in 21/22, visit the funding pages.

 


ADDITIONAL COSTS

TBC

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* At Northumbria we are strongly committed to protecting the privacy of personal data. To view the University’s Privacy Notice please click here

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

AP0402 -

Fundamentals of Analytical Chemistry (Core,20 Credits)

This module will cover the following:
• An introduction to the fundamental principles of analytical chemistry.
• Consolidation of the knowledge of empirical formulae and balancing of chemical equations.
• An introduction to the theory and practice of titrimetry, gravimetry, flame photometry and spectrophotometry for analysis.
• Theory and hands on experience of chromatographic techniques for separation and analysis of mixtures.

More information

AP0403 -

Principles of Chemical Structure (Core,20 Credits)

On this module you will learn about the theoretical building blocks of structural chemistry and the tools and rules that enable us to predict structure and reactivity in chemical compounds. This is the keystone for much for the language and understanding of chemistry required at a higher level where structural chemistry informs the properties and behaviours of more complex chemical systems such as drugs and medicine, materials and plastics, and many more. The learning journey for this module starts at the atomic level and moves through to the molecular level taking in the following broad topics and their related competencies.

• Atomic and electronic structure, isotopes, electron configurations, the periodic table and the importance of valence electrons
• Bonding theories, covalent and ionic bonding, ionic and covalent structures
• Lewis and VSEPR approaches to structure prediction for main group compounds
• Acid and base chemistry
• Coordination chemistry of the metals, structures and geometries, isomerism, basic reactions
• Organic structures, isomerism and nomenclature
• Organic stereochemistry, geometric and optical isomerism, Cahn-Ingold-Prelog rules and definitions, chirality and the language of stereochemistry.
• Electron movement and structural consequences, resonance and tautomerism
• Basics of structural transformation in organic systems, intro to organic mechanism and curly arrows, electrophiles, nucleophiles and common reaction types and functional groups transformations
• Introduction to organic synthesis, oxidation and reduction, common reagents and pathways.

More information

AP0404 -

Cell Biology and Genetics (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn about basics of the diversity of life and the unifying cell theory including, DNA as the universal information store and the central dogma of molecular biology as the unifying mechanism in all life. You will learn the structure and function of cells and the organelles they contain along with their life cycle, division, self-replication and eventual death.

You will learn the basic principles of heredity, including molecular, classical , human and microbial genetics. You will learn the structure, function, regulation of genes and genomes. You will also learn the fundamentals of applied genetics including an introduction to clinical genetics and the identification of genetic mutations and polymorphisms and their influence on disease processes.

Underpinning these theoretical concepts and principles covered in the lecture course you will be trained in basic techniques of handling DNA in the laboratory.

More information

AP0406 -

Practical Skills (Core,20 Credits)

On this module you will learn the primary skills required to be a student of a science degree. These skills will cover both laboratory based and data/information retrieval and handling. As part of the laboratory skills you will study the importance of health & safety, ethics and appropriate sample handling. You will then move into the laboratory where hands on sessions offer you an opportunity to develop key skills in areas of liquid handling, microscopy, buffers, making solutions and dilutions, and enzymatic analysis. You will use your generated laboratory data to then study and understand appropriate methods of data manipulation and presentation. You will also on this module gain experience and confidence in searching for, understanding of and appreciation of scientific literature.

More information

AP0415 -

Introduction to Biological and Medicinal Chemistry (Core,20 Credits)

This module will explore the fascinating world of Biological and Medicinal Chemistry and build from your basic understanding of core chemistry gained elsewhere in the programme. You will gain knowledge and understanding about the structures and properties small biomolecules such as amino acids, purine and pyramidine bases and carbohydrates and lipids. You will gain an in depth understanding about the structures of biopolymers such as proteins and nucleic acids and the broad variety of complexes they participate in. You will understand how the structure and function correlate and how the weak (non-covalent) interactions such as hydrogen bonds, electrostatic interactions and van der Waals interactions play vital role for formation and stabilization of the structures in biological macromolecules.

You will understand how enzymes work, what the catalytic strategies of the cell are and how the enzyme mechanisms can be realized chemically. You will learn about enzyme kinetics, inhibition. Attention will be given to the receptors and how they interact with external signals and deliver the signal within the cell. You will then gain knowledge about the main steps and reactions of metabolism (both biosynthesises and catabolism) and you will gain key insights into the biochemical aspects of DNA replication and gene expression.

Based on the solid understanding of Biological Chemistry you will then explore the fundamentals of Medicinal Chemistry. You will understand the basic concepts of pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics, drug discovery, design and development. You will be taught basic elements of combinatorial and parallel synthesis, QSAR, computer-aided drug design. You will gain an insight into antibacterial, antiviral and anticancer drugs structure and action. Practical laboratory and computer classes will provide you with key practical skills for working with enzymes and will introduce you to basic tools for computer visualizations and evaluation of small and large molecules and their interactions.

More information

AP0417 -

Practical and Professional Skills for Chemists (Core,20 Credits)

This is a laboratory based module where you will learn and develop a range of basic laboratory skills necessary to further study, research and a professional environment, and these will form the basis for more advanced laboratory procedures to follow in later years. You will undertake a variety of interesting investigational experiments which cover core areas of organic, inorganic, analytical and physical branches of chemistry and which will develop skills and techniques, whilst also illustrating key concepts of chemistry found in other parts of the programme. On completion of this module you will be able to: i) use a variety of laboratory techniques and skills in a safe and efficient manner; ii) interpret the results of laboratory investigations; iii) present the results of laboratory work in a coherent manner. You will also develop professional skills such as a basic understanding of Health and Safety protocols and good laboratory practice, problem-solving and analytical skills, team work, organisation, and communication skills.

More information

JE5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Applied Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

AP0507 -

Principles of Cellular and Biomolecular Analysis (Core,20 Credits)

In this module you will explore and apply the fundamental biological and chemical principles used to develop important analyses in modern bioscience. You will learn how the composition of complex mixtures of molecules are analysed and interpreted to support clinical diagnosis or to illuminate bioscience research. In some cases molecules are separated to facilitate their identification and quantitation in a complex mixture (electrophoresis and chromatography), elsewhere the specificity or selectivity of an analytical instrument (selective electrodes, biosensors, enzyme assays and immunochemical assays) will be key. In yet other scenarios, specific information may be gleaned from spectral analyses of mixtures (nuclear magnetic resonance, UV-vis spectrophotometry and mass spectrometry). Additionally, the use of cell culture to support biomedical analyses in cytotoxicity testing and also their responses to modelled pathophysiological challenges in biomedical research will be an important and exciting feature. As well as the content illustrating important biological and analytical principles, the mode of assessment will develop your generic research skills in literature searching and evaluation, data analysis, critical appraisal of methodologies and report writing to prepare you for your final year research project and beyond in life as a professional scientist.

More information

AP0511 -

Molecular Biology and Genetics (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn the basic principles of molecular biology and gain an understanding of how the many different modern techniques can be applied to understanding genetics at the level of the nucleic acids - deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA). You will learn why and how DNA and RNA can be manipulated in the laboratory in order to clone and sequence DNA, and produce useful proteins. In addition, you will gain practical experience in representative molecular biology methods. You will also learn how mutations in DNA can lead to human disease and discover the techniques that have been developed to identify normal and mutant DNA sequences in complex mixtures. There will be a focus on the use of molecular biology in understanding human genetics, in particular the diagnosis of disease at the chromosome and nucleic acid levels, and also the methods used for testing and screening for genetic susceptibility. You will learn how techniques have been developed to sequence the human genome and to identify individuals based on features within their DNA. The broader influence of molecular biology in non-human species will be included in your learning using examples of applied genetics.

More information

AP0514 -

Human Metabolism (Core,20 Credits)

In ‘Human Metabolism’ you will learn of how the body breaks down various biological molecules such as sugars, fats and proteins to gain energy and how it converts these molecules into the other various essential components required to function normally. You will learn about the disorders that can arise and the resulting consequences, with a food and nutritional sciences approach. Consequences such as malnutrition, vitamin deficiencies, diabetes and obesity will be discussed. You will learn about these various aspects in a system/organ-specific manner which will include the liver, the kidneys, heart and digestive tract, allowing you to clearly understand the relationship between normal and disrupted function.

More information

AP0517 -

Bioinformatics and Molecular Biology (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn information technology and computing sufficient to comprehend the theoretical basis of bioinformatics; the principles and basic applications of various bioinformatics tools in the analysis of biological data; and practical competence in the use of bioinformatics at a basic level to analyse biological data and understand the limitations of these techniques. You will also learn how to perform molecular biology experiments in a competent and safe manner; be able to carry out work independently; be able to write in a concise and coherent fashion; and be able to demonstrate an awareness of the wider social and political implications of the topics covered in the module.

More information

AP0526 -

Organic Chemistry (Core,20 Credits)

This module will build on your learning from the previous year in Principles of Chemical Structure. You will learn and develop further both your theoretical and practical skills in organic chemistry that are essential in modern chemistry-based jobs. For example, you will learn about key aspects of molecular structure of organic molecules, the molecular basis for their reactivity, how to devise synthetic schemes for target compounds, and about modern synthetic tools that are used in the everyday synthesis of organic chemicals. You will also further develop your practical, interpretive and reporting skills in the laboratory.

More information

AP0529 -

Analytical Methods (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn about the principal features of chromatographic and spectroscopic techniques, including:
? Survey of separation science.
? Fundamentals of HPLC with respect to isocratic and gradient elution, reversed and normal phase separation and detectors.
? Fundamentals of capillary GC with respect to isothermal and temperature programmed elution, selection of column and detectors.
? Theoretical aspects of separation, capacity factors, resolution, theoretical plate height (efficiency), peak tailing and the influence of these parameters on separation.
? Theoretical aspects of modern and traditional sample preparation techniques.
? Overview of spectroscopic methods.
? NMR spectroscopy: basic instrumentation and experimental aspects; Pulse-Fourier Transform methods; spectral appearance and interpretation for 1H and 13C NMR spectroscopy; splitting patterns for common 1st and 2nd order systems; advanced methods; DEPT spectra.
? IR spectroscopy: basic instrumentation and experimental aspects; interpretation and prediction of spectra, vibrational modelling.
? Mass spectroscopy: basic instrumentation and experimental aspects, ionisation techniques; fragmentation patterns, interpretation and prediction of spectra.
? Strategy and practice in structure elucidation.
Laboratory exercises will be used to underpin the theory taught in lectures, develop practical skills and afford hands-on experience of relevant techniques. In addition, there will be in-module assignments allowing you to explore the merits and approaches necessary to solve typical spectroscopic problems.

More information

AP0536 -

Study Abroad (Optional,120 Credits)

This study abroad module is designed for standard full-time undergraduate programmes to provide you with the option to take an additional one year study abroad within your programme.

Study abroad provides an opportunity to develop personal skills in a different learning environment with a partner university. The module does not affect the classification of your degree, but if successfully passed the study abroad year is recognised in your transcript and degree certificate. There is a competitive selection process for placements and places cannot be guaranteed.

More information

AP0552 -

Industrial Placement Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Industrial Placement Year module is a full year 120 credit module which is available on degree courses which include a Industrial Placement year which is taken as an additional year of study between levels 5 and 6. You will undertake a year of Industrial Placement at an approved placement partner. This broadens your overall experience of learning by embedding your current and future learning of your discipline within a regimented and target-oriented work environment. The course of Industrial Placement will be dependent on the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). Your Industrial Placement year will be assessed on a pass/fail basis. It will not count towards your final degree classification but, if you pass, it is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Industrial Placement Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Industrial Placement Year)”.

More information

AP0606 -

Biomedical and Biological Sciences Research Project (Core,40 Credits)

You will learn how to plan a literature investigation on a specific research topic, exploit appropriate sources and databases to search for information, evaluate and critically review the primary literature articles and assess their significance in the broader context, evaluate experimentation protocols required to carry out the proposed research, conduct experiments in a safe and effective manner and discuss the validity and significance of the data provided, present the project work in the form of an oral presentation and written report in an appropriate style and format.

More information

AP0609 -

Advanced Analytical Techniques (Core,20 Credits)

In this module you will explore essential advanced analytical techniques relevant to the practice of modern Biomedical Sciences. You will learn about the scientific principles underpinning these methodologies and also how they are applied to both medical diagnostics and to research. You will gain an understanding of genetic engineering strategies and purification of recombinant proteins for analysis. In addition you will also learn about advanced separation techniques such as flow cytometry and Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) as well as automated enzyme analysis. You will also gain an insight into cutting edge technologies such as next generation sequencing and microarray technologies in the context of both RNA (transcriptomics), protein (proteomics) and small molecules (metabolomics). In addition to learning the theoretical aspects and gaining hands-on laboratory experience in these techniques, you will learn to evaluate, compare and make sound evidence-based choices regarding analytical approach and experimental design that will prove a key skill in your future career.

More information

AP0610 -

Genomics (Optional,20 Credits)

Genome scale sequence analysis had transformed our understanding of human disease susceptibility and drug metabolism. In this module you will learn about the methodologies that have led to this understanding and the production of genome databases. You will also study both the sequence and the structural variation in the human genome and those variations associated with disease. The regulatory and epigenetic landscapes including DNA methylation of human genomes will also be studied in detail along with microRNA regulatory networks. Finally the application of genomics to improve human health, personalised medicine and develop new diagnostics will be explored. You will also debate social, legal and ethical aspects of genetic testing.

More information

AP0625 -

Natural Product and Medicinal Chemistry (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn about the chemistry Nature uses to biosynthesise useful natural products and how medicinal chemistry is utilised to combat disease. As you survey Nature’s biosynthetic pathways you will discover how the plethora of naturally occurring molecules are formed from elementary building blocks. In the area of medicinal chemistry you will explore fundamental principles of drug design and learn about the processes through which drugs act to alleviate disease.
Main topics include:
•Biosynthesis of fatty acids, polyketides, terpenes and related biologically relevant molecules
•Drug design, applications and mechanisms of actions

More information

AP0631 -

Industrial Biochemistry and Biocatalysis (Optional,20 Credits)

Industrial biochemistry and biotechnology provide us with the opportunity to revolutionise synthetic chemistry and to obtain a wide variety of chemical products through reactions which are considered green and environmentally-sustainable. In this module you will learn the basic principles of industrial biochemistry and biotechnology in order to gain an understanding of the development and application of modern techniques in the field. You will learn how enzymes of industrial importance are discovered, including how the application of ever-more powerful computers can assist us with bioinformatics, and how high-throughput screening techniques have rapidly increased the rate at which new enzymes are characterised and developed. Through the discussion of case studies with a range of experts in the field you will focus on the applications of enzymes, how they are characterised, and how downstream processing is used to separate products from reaction mixtures. You will study the reuse of these biological catalysts through immobilisation, how batch vs. flow synthesis affects the purity and yield of products, and you will also consider the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of biocatalysis on the developing world.

More information

AP0632 -

Current Topics in Biochemistry (Core,20 Credits)

The syllabus will be subject to review each year as topics develop, however, the topics will cover research areas such as medical and pharmaceutical biochemistry, genetic variation and gene/environment interactions influencing health, the application of biochemistry/biotechnology in the development of novel therapeutic strategies for disease, drug development, gene therapy and diagnostic tools, applications of biotechnology to genome sequencing projects, e.g. the role in medicine and drug development, environmental biochemistry, industrial biochemistry, such as treatment of waste-water, remediation of contaminated sites and applications of biotechnology to the production of high value chemicals, consumer products and food.

More information

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

AP0402 -

Fundamentals of Analytical Chemistry (Core,20 Credits)

This module will cover the following:
• An introduction to the fundamental principles of analytical chemistry.
• Consolidation of the knowledge of empirical formulae and balancing of chemical equations.
• An introduction to the theory and practice of titrimetry, gravimetry, flame photometry and spectrophotometry for analysis.
• Theory and hands on experience of chromatographic techniques for separation and analysis of mixtures.

More information

AP0403 -

Principles of Chemical Structure (Core,20 Credits)

On this module you will learn about the theoretical building blocks of structural chemistry and the tools and rules that enable us to predict structure and reactivity in chemical compounds. This is the keystone for much for the language and understanding of chemistry required at a higher level where structural chemistry informs the properties and behaviours of more complex chemical systems such as drugs and medicine, materials and plastics, and many more. The learning journey for this module starts at the atomic level and moves through to the molecular level taking in the following broad topics and their related competencies.

• Atomic and electronic structure, isotopes, electron configurations, the periodic table and the importance of valence electrons
• Bonding theories, covalent and ionic bonding, ionic and covalent structures
• Lewis and VSEPR approaches to structure prediction for main group compounds
• Acid and base chemistry
• Coordination chemistry of the metals, structures and geometries, isomerism, basic reactions
• Organic structures, isomerism and nomenclature
• Organic stereochemistry, geometric and optical isomerism, Cahn-Ingold-Prelog rules and definitions, chirality and the language of stereochemistry.
• Electron movement and structural consequences, resonance and tautomerism
• Basics of structural transformation in organic systems, intro to organic mechanism and curly arrows, electrophiles, nucleophiles and common reaction types and functional groups transformations
• Introduction to organic synthesis, oxidation and reduction, common reagents and pathways.

More information

AP0404 -

Cell Biology and Genetics (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn about basics of the diversity of life and the unifying cell theory including, DNA as the universal information store and the central dogma of molecular biology as the unifying mechanism in all life. You will learn the structure and function of cells and the organelles they contain along with their life cycle, division, self-replication and eventual death.

You will learn the basic principles of heredity, including molecular, classical , human and microbial genetics. You will learn the structure, function, regulation of genes and genomes. You will also learn the fundamentals of applied genetics including an introduction to clinical genetics and the identification of genetic mutations and polymorphisms and their influence on disease processes.

Underpinning these theoretical concepts and principles covered in the lecture course you will be trained in basic techniques of handling DNA in the laboratory.

More information

AP0406 -

Practical Skills (Core,20 Credits)

On this module you will learn the primary skills required to be a student of a science degree. These skills will cover both laboratory based and data/information retrieval and handling. As part of the laboratory skills you will study the importance of health & safety, ethics and appropriate sample handling. You will then move into the laboratory where hands on sessions offer you an opportunity to develop key skills in areas of liquid handling, microscopy, buffers, making solutions and dilutions, and enzymatic analysis. You will use your generated laboratory data to then study and understand appropriate methods of data manipulation and presentation. You will also on this module gain experience and confidence in searching for, understanding of and appreciation of scientific literature.

More information

AP0415 -

Introduction to Biological and Medicinal Chemistry (Core,20 Credits)

This module will explore the fascinating world of Biological and Medicinal Chemistry and build from your basic understanding of core chemistry gained elsewhere in the programme. You will gain knowledge and understanding about the structures and properties small biomolecules such as amino acids, purine and pyramidine bases and carbohydrates and lipids. You will gain an in depth understanding about the structures of biopolymers such as proteins and nucleic acids and the broad variety of complexes they participate in. You will understand how the structure and function correlate and how the weak (non-covalent) interactions such as hydrogen bonds, electrostatic interactions and van der Waals interactions play vital role for formation and stabilization of the structures in biological macromolecules.

You will understand how enzymes work, what the catalytic strategies of the cell are and how the enzyme mechanisms can be realized chemically. You will learn about enzyme kinetics, inhibition. Attention will be given to the receptors and how they interact with external signals and deliver the signal within the cell. You will then gain knowledge about the main steps and reactions of metabolism (both biosynthesises and catabolism) and you will gain key insights into the biochemical aspects of DNA replication and gene expression.

Based on the solid understanding of Biological Chemistry you will then explore the fundamentals of Medicinal Chemistry. You will understand the basic concepts of pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics, drug discovery, design and development. You will be taught basic elements of combinatorial and parallel synthesis, QSAR, computer-aided drug design. You will gain an insight into antibacterial, antiviral and anticancer drugs structure and action. Practical laboratory and computer classes will provide you with key practical skills for working with enzymes and will introduce you to basic tools for computer visualizations and evaluation of small and large molecules and their interactions.

More information

AP0417 -

Practical and Professional Skills for Chemists (Core,20 Credits)

This is a laboratory based module where you will learn and develop a range of basic laboratory skills necessary to further study, research and a professional environment, and these will form the basis for more advanced laboratory procedures to follow in later years. You will undertake a variety of interesting investigational experiments which cover core areas of organic, inorganic, analytical and physical branches of chemistry and which will develop skills and techniques, whilst also illustrating key concepts of chemistry found in other parts of the programme. On completion of this module you will be able to: i) use a variety of laboratory techniques and skills in a safe and efficient manner; ii) interpret the results of laboratory investigations; iii) present the results of laboratory work in a coherent manner. You will also develop professional skills such as a basic understanding of Health and Safety protocols and good laboratory practice, problem-solving and analytical skills, team work, organisation, and communication skills.

More information

JE5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Applied Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

AP0507 -

Principles of Cellular and Biomolecular Analysis (Core,20 Credits)

In this module you will explore and apply the fundamental biological and chemical principles used to develop important analyses in modern bioscience. You will learn how the composition of complex mixtures of molecules are analysed and interpreted to support clinical diagnosis or to illuminate bioscience research. In some cases molecules are separated to facilitate their identification and quantitation in a complex mixture (electrophoresis and chromatography), elsewhere the specificity or selectivity of an analytical instrument (selective electrodes, biosensors, enzyme assays and immunochemical assays) will be key. In yet other scenarios, specific information may be gleaned from spectral analyses of mixtures (nuclear magnetic resonance, UV-vis spectrophotometry and mass spectrometry). Additionally, the use of cell culture to support biomedical analyses in cytotoxicity testing and also their responses to modelled pathophysiological challenges in biomedical research will be an important and exciting feature. As well as the content illustrating important biological and analytical principles, the mode of assessment will develop your generic research skills in literature searching and evaluation, data analysis, critical appraisal of methodologies and report writing to prepare you for your final year research project and beyond in life as a professional scientist.

More information

AP0511 -

Molecular Biology and Genetics (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn the basic principles of molecular biology and gain an understanding of how the many different modern techniques can be applied to understanding genetics at the level of the nucleic acids - deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA). You will learn why and how DNA and RNA can be manipulated in the laboratory in order to clone and sequence DNA, and produce useful proteins. In addition, you will gain practical experience in representative molecular biology methods. You will also learn how mutations in DNA can lead to human disease and discover the techniques that have been developed to identify normal and mutant DNA sequences in complex mixtures. There will be a focus on the use of molecular biology in understanding human genetics, in particular the diagnosis of disease at the chromosome and nucleic acid levels, and also the methods used for testing and screening for genetic susceptibility. You will learn how techniques have been developed to sequence the human genome and to identify individuals based on features within their DNA. The broader influence of molecular biology in non-human species will be included in your learning using examples of applied genetics.

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AP0514 -

Human Metabolism (Core,20 Credits)

In ‘Human Metabolism’ you will learn of how the body breaks down various biological molecules such as sugars, fats and proteins to gain energy and how it converts these molecules into the other various essential components required to function normally. You will learn about the disorders that can arise and the resulting consequences, with a food and nutritional sciences approach. Consequences such as malnutrition, vitamin deficiencies, diabetes and obesity will be discussed. You will learn about these various aspects in a system/organ-specific manner which will include the liver, the kidneys, heart and digestive tract, allowing you to clearly understand the relationship between normal and disrupted function.

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AP0517 -

Bioinformatics and Molecular Biology (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn information technology and computing sufficient to comprehend the theoretical basis of bioinformatics; the principles and basic applications of various bioinformatics tools in the analysis of biological data; and practical competence in the use of bioinformatics at a basic level to analyse biological data and understand the limitations of these techniques. You will also learn how to perform molecular biology experiments in a competent and safe manner; be able to carry out work independently; be able to write in a concise and coherent fashion; and be able to demonstrate an awareness of the wider social and political implications of the topics covered in the module.

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AP0526 -

Organic Chemistry (Core,20 Credits)

This module will build on your learning from the previous year in Principles of Chemical Structure. You will learn and develop further both your theoretical and practical skills in organic chemistry that are essential in modern chemistry-based jobs. For example, you will learn about key aspects of molecular structure of organic molecules, the molecular basis for their reactivity, how to devise synthetic schemes for target compounds, and about modern synthetic tools that are used in the everyday synthesis of organic chemicals. You will also further develop your practical, interpretive and reporting skills in the laboratory.

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AP0529 -

Analytical Methods (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn about the principal features of chromatographic and spectroscopic techniques, including:
? Survey of separation science.
? Fundamentals of HPLC with respect to isocratic and gradient elution, reversed and normal phase separation and detectors.
? Fundamentals of capillary GC with respect to isothermal and temperature programmed elution, selection of column and detectors.
? Theoretical aspects of separation, capacity factors, resolution, theoretical plate height (efficiency), peak tailing and the influence of these parameters on separation.
? Theoretical aspects of modern and traditional sample preparation techniques.
? Overview of spectroscopic methods.
? NMR spectroscopy: basic instrumentation and experimental aspects; Pulse-Fourier Transform methods; spectral appearance and interpretation for 1H and 13C NMR spectroscopy; splitting patterns for common 1st and 2nd order systems; advanced methods; DEPT spectra.
? IR spectroscopy: basic instrumentation and experimental aspects; interpretation and prediction of spectra, vibrational modelling.
? Mass spectroscopy: basic instrumentation and experimental aspects, ionisation techniques; fragmentation patterns, interpretation and prediction of spectra.
? Strategy and practice in structure elucidation.
Laboratory exercises will be used to underpin the theory taught in lectures, develop practical skills and afford hands-on experience of relevant techniques. In addition, there will be in-module assignments allowing you to explore the merits and approaches necessary to solve typical spectroscopic problems.

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AP0536 -

Study Abroad (Optional,120 Credits)

This study abroad module is designed for standard full-time undergraduate programmes to provide you with the option to take an additional one year study abroad within your programme.

Study abroad provides an opportunity to develop personal skills in a different learning environment with a partner university. The module does not affect the classification of your degree, but if successfully passed the study abroad year is recognised in your transcript and degree certificate. There is a competitive selection process for placements and places cannot be guaranteed.

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AP0552 -

Industrial Placement Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Industrial Placement Year module is a full year 120 credit module which is available on degree courses which include a Industrial Placement year which is taken as an additional year of study between levels 5 and 6. You will undertake a year of Industrial Placement at an approved placement partner. This broadens your overall experience of learning by embedding your current and future learning of your discipline within a regimented and target-oriented work environment. The course of Industrial Placement will be dependent on the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). Your Industrial Placement year will be assessed on a pass/fail basis. It will not count towards your final degree classification but, if you pass, it is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Industrial Placement Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Industrial Placement Year)”.

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AP0606 -

Biomedical and Biological Sciences Research Project (Core,40 Credits)

You will learn how to plan a literature investigation on a specific research topic, exploit appropriate sources and databases to search for information, evaluate and critically review the primary literature articles and assess their significance in the broader context, evaluate experimentation protocols required to carry out the proposed research, conduct experiments in a safe and effective manner and discuss the validity and significance of the data provided, present the project work in the form of an oral presentation and written report in an appropriate style and format.

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AP0609 -

Advanced Analytical Techniques (Core,20 Credits)

In this module you will explore essential advanced analytical techniques relevant to the practice of modern Biomedical Sciences. You will learn about the scientific principles underpinning these methodologies and also how they are applied to both medical diagnostics and to research. You will gain an understanding of genetic engineering strategies and purification of recombinant proteins for analysis. In addition you will also learn about advanced separation techniques such as flow cytometry and Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) as well as automated enzyme analysis. You will also gain an insight into cutting edge technologies such as next generation sequencing and microarray technologies in the context of both RNA (transcriptomics), protein (proteomics) and small molecules (metabolomics). In addition to learning the theoretical aspects and gaining hands-on laboratory experience in these techniques, you will learn to evaluate, compare and make sound evidence-based choices regarding analytical approach and experimental design that will prove a key skill in your future career.

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AP0610 -

Genomics (Optional,20 Credits)

Genome scale sequence analysis had transformed our understanding of human disease susceptibility and drug metabolism. In this module you will learn about the methodologies that have led to this understanding and the production of genome databases. You will also study both the sequence and the structural variation in the human genome and those variations associated with disease. The regulatory and epigenetic landscapes including DNA methylation of human genomes will also be studied in detail along with microRNA regulatory networks. Finally the application of genomics to improve human health, personalised medicine and develop new diagnostics will be explored. You will also debate social, legal and ethical aspects of genetic testing.

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AP0625 -

Natural Product and Medicinal Chemistry (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn about the chemistry Nature uses to biosynthesise useful natural products and how medicinal chemistry is utilised to combat disease. As you survey Nature’s biosynthetic pathways you will discover how the plethora of naturally occurring molecules are formed from elementary building blocks. In the area of medicinal chemistry you will explore fundamental principles of drug design and learn about the processes through which drugs act to alleviate disease.
Main topics include:
•Biosynthesis of fatty acids, polyketides, terpenes and related biologically relevant molecules
•Drug design, applications and mechanisms of actions

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AP0631 -

Industrial Biochemistry and Biocatalysis (Optional,20 Credits)

Industrial biochemistry and biotechnology provide us with the opportunity to revolutionise synthetic chemistry and to obtain a wide variety of chemical products through reactions which are considered green and environmentally-sustainable. In this module you will learn the basic principles of industrial biochemistry and biotechnology in order to gain an understanding of the development and application of modern techniques in the field. You will learn how enzymes of industrial importance are discovered, including how the application of ever-more powerful computers can assist us with bioinformatics, and how high-throughput screening techniques have rapidly increased the rate at which new enzymes are characterised and developed. Through the discussion of case studies with a range of experts in the field you will focus on the applications of enzymes, how they are characterised, and how downstream processing is used to separate products from reaction mixtures. You will study the reuse of these biological catalysts through immobilisation, how batch vs. flow synthesis affects the purity and yield of products, and you will also consider the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of biocatalysis on the developing world.

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AP0632 -

Current Topics in Biochemistry (Core,20 Credits)

The syllabus will be subject to review each year as topics develop, however, the topics will cover research areas such as medical and pharmaceutical biochemistry, genetic variation and gene/environment interactions influencing health, the application of biochemistry/biotechnology in the development of novel therapeutic strategies for disease, drug development, gene therapy and diagnostic tools, applications of biotechnology to genome sequencing projects, e.g. the role in medicine and drug development, environmental biochemistry, industrial biochemistry, such as treatment of waste-water, remediation of contaminated sites and applications of biotechnology to the production of high value chemicals, consumer products and food.

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Biochemistry BSc (Hons)

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Courses starting in 2021 are offered as a mix of face to face and online learning. We continue to monitor government and local authority guidance in relation to Covid-19 and we are ready and able to flex accordingly to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff.

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with additional restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors, potentially to a full online offer, should further restrictions be deemed necessary in future.

Our online activity will be delivered through Blackboard Ultra, enabling collaboration, connection and engagement with materials and people.

 

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