Fundamental concepts in biological chemistry.
Nucleotides and nucleic acids: structure and function.
Amminoacids: L-amino acids structures, classification, titration curves, peptide bonding formation, resonance of peptide bonding, Isoelectric point.-COOH acidity and -NH2 basicity. Structure and general properties, and formulas, specific properties, acid-base properties, digestion of proteins.
Peptides and proteins: general concepts on structure and function. Peptide bond, Primary, secondary and tertiary structures.
Secondary structure: Ramachandran plot, -helix, and -sheets. Hydrogen Bonding formation in -elix and -sheet structures.
Fibrous proteins: Tertiary structure: classification and methods of investigation. Quaternary structure and symmetry. Digestion of proteins.
Reversible binding of a ligand (O2) to a protein: Myoglobin (Mb) and Hemoglobin (Hb) structure and function.
The pH influence ( Bohr effect ) and cooperativity for oxygen binding. Temperature influence on the oxygen binding. Hill’s plot.
Proteins as molecular motors: actin-myosin system, microtubule system, bacterial flagellar system
Carbohydrates: classification, natural occurrence. Aldoses, Ketoses: Fischer and Haworth formulas, conformational representations. Reducing properties, Anomers, Epimers. Mutarotation. D-Glucose, D-Fructose, D-Ribose, D-2-deossi-Ribose D-Galactose.
Disaccharides: Maltose, Cellobiose, Lactose, Saccharose.
Polisaccharides: starch, glycogen, cellulose, glycoproteins. Digestion of Carbohydrates.
Lipids: fatty acids, triacilglycerols (fats,oils) basic hydrolysis, soap formation (mechanism), phospholipids, cell membranes. Trasport across the membranes, membrane proteins, digestion of lipids.
Enzymes: general properties and classification, activation energy, mechanisms of enzyme catalysis, Micaelis-Menten theory, kinetic parameters, definition and calculation Km, Vmax, Kcat., examples, mechanism of protease activity, mechanism of enzyme inhibition, Significance of allosteric regulation.
Electron transport: the respiratory chain, the redox centres, cofactors, protein complexes and bioenergetics, NAD+/NADH, FAD/FADH2 structures.
Oxidative phosphorylation: ATP-sintase structure-function
Homeostasis. Biophysics of the cell membrane (permeability and transport). Membrane potentials: resting, electrotonic, action potentials. Propagation of potentials. The synapses.
Nervous and muscular system
Functional organization of the nervous system. Autonomous and somatic motor system: innervations, neurotransmitters and receptors, functions of autonomic nervous system. The neuromuscular junction. Skeletal, cardiac and smooth muscle physiology: mechanical aspect of the muscular contraction.
Endocrine function: the hypothalamic-hypophysis-target axis.
The control of body metabolism.
Homeostasis of calcium and phosphate (parathormone, calcitonin and Vit D).
The common myocardium and the specific myocardium. The electrical activity of the heart: cardiac pacemakers and conduction system. ECG. Mechanical features of the heart: the cardiac cycle.
Structure and function of vessels, visco-elastic behavior, arterial pulse, blood pressure, blood volume, flow and resistance. Microcirculation and interstitial plasma-liquid exchanges. The laws of hydrostatics and hemodynamics. Control of cardiac output and systemic blood pressure.
Structure and function of the respiratory system. Respiratory mechanics. Ventilation-perfusion ratio. Respiratory centers and breathing control (nervous, chemoceptive and mechanoceptive). Respiratory indexes: lung volumes and capacity. Alveolar exchanges and transport of gases in the blood.
The nephron. Filtration, re-absorption, secretion and excretion processes. The functions of the kidney (endocrine, control in hydro-saline and acid-base balance).
The gastrointestinal system.
Nervous and hormonal control of gastrointestinal functions. Digestion and absorption of the main nutrients. Functions of the exocrine pancreas, gallbladder and liver.