AP0631 - Industrial Biochemistry and Biocatalysis

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What will I learn on this module?

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.

How will I learn on this module?

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, practical classes and a visit to an industrial site. The theory of the subject will be delivered through lectures from both internal and external lecturers, who are experts in their respective fields. You will develop your technical skills through participation in a series of practical sessions where you will develop a biocatalytic reaction from production of the enzyme through characterisation, immobilisation and application to a biotransformation. You will also be provided with background reading by each lecturer to allow you to develop your understanding at your own pace.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

You will be provided with access to lecture notes and supplementary materials such as useful websites and videos through Blackboard Ultra. Here you will also be kept up-to-date with the organisation of lectures, practical sessions and the field trip. This information will complement the electronic timetable which will be issued to you centrally via University timetabling. You will also have access to a student forum on Blackboard Ultra, where you can ask questions and find answers from your peers, your lecturers and external lecturers. At the end of each taught session lecturers will provide you with an opportunity to ask questions, however staff can be contacted outside of these sessions by email and you can arrange time to discuss issues at a time convenient to you both.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
1. You will explore the fundamental applications of biotechnology to industrially-relevant chemical reactions.
2. You will analyse how enzymes are developed, improved and reused, and evaluate the profitability of such reactions.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
3. You will be exposed to current industrialists and experts in biochemistry and biocatalysis through your lectures and review examples from industry and academic research.
4. You will operate in a safe and effective manner in the laboratory.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
5. You will be able to discuss of how biocatalysis aligns with the twelve principles of green chemistry, and how the Nagoya protocol ensures fair use of enzymes discovered around the world.

How will I be assessed?

You will perform practical procedures involving the production and use of an industrially-relevant enzyme, which will be assessed through the submission of a written scientific communication. You will be provided with a summative mark and feedback through the eLP (MLOs 1, 2, 3, 4 tested).

You will be answer multiple-choice questions under examination conditions and receive a summative mark (MLOs 1, 2, 3, 5 tested).

Pre-requisite(s)

None

Co-requisite(s)

None

Module abstract

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 technology 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, study how batch vs. flow synthesis affects the purity and yield of products, and you also will consider the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of biocatalysis on the developing world.

Course info

UCAS Code F115

Credits 20

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 2020

Fee Information

Module Information

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