Fall 2009 Courses

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055. Science of Food and Wine
Richard Broene T 10:00 - 11:25, TH 10:00 - 11:25 Druckenmiller-004
Methods of food and wine preparation and production emerged from essentially controlled scientific experiments, even if the techniques of cooking are often carried out without thought of the underlying physical processes at play. Considers the science behind food and wine using bread baking, cooking techniques, the role of microbes in our diet, and wine making and appreciation to explore the chemistry and biology that underlie our gastronomy. Molecular structures and complex interactions central to cooking and wine are examined in integrated laboratory exercises. Assumes no background in science. Not open to students who have credit for a chemistry course numbered 100 or higher.

061. Your First Nine Months: From Conception to Birth
Carey Phillips M 11:30 - 12:55, W 11:30 - 12:55 Cleaveland-151
Covers the biological events from the process of fertilization through early development and birth of a human. Intended for those who have had little biology or do not intend to major in biology. Explores the formation of the major organ systems and how the parts of the body are constructed in the correct places and at the correct times. Also discusses topics such as cloning and the effects of prenatal use of drugs as they relate to the biological principles involved in early human development. Includes a few in-class laboratory sessions in which students learn to do experiments, and collect, analyze, and interpret data.

086. Biotechnology and Bioengineering
Peter Woodruff T 2:30 - 3:55, TH 2:30 - 3:55 Druckenmiller-020
Scientific advances over the last few decades have greatly expanded our understanding of the natural world. Some of these discoveries have been applied to other fields to improve human health or solve problems facing society. Examines contemporary application of scientific progress in areas such as genetic engineering, stem cells, drug discovery, biofuels, and environmental remediation. Analyzes ethical concerns raised by advances in biotechnology and bioengineering.

101. Biological Principles I
Bruce Kohorn T 8:30 - 9:55, TH 8:30 - 9:55 Druckenmiller-020
The first in a two-semester introductory biology sequence. Topics include fundamental principles of cellular and molecular biology with an emphasis on providing a problem-solving approach to an understanding of genes, RNA, proteins, and cell structure and communication. Focuses on developing quantitative skills, as well as critical thinking and problem solving skills. Lecture and weekly laboratory/discussion groups. First-year students are required to take the biology placement examination during orientation.

109. Introductory Biology
Michael Palopoli M 8:30 - 9:25, W 8:30 - 9:25, F 8:30 - 9:25 Druckenmiller-016
Lectures examine fundamental biological principles, from the subcellular to the ecosystem level. Topics include bioenergetics, structure-function relationships, cellular information systems, physiology, ecology, and evolutionary biology. Laboratory sessions are intended to develop a deeper understanding of the techniques and methods of science by requiring students to design and conduct their own experiments. Lecture and weekly laboratory/discussion groups.

174. Biomathematics
Mary Zeeman M 11:30 - 12:55, W 11:30 - 12:55 Searles-113
A study of mathematical methods driven by questions in biology. Biological questions are drawn from a broad range of topics, including disease, ecology, genetics, population dynamics, neurobiology, endocrinology and biomechanics. Mathematical methods include compartmental models, matrices, linear transformations, eigenvalues, eigenvectors, matrix iteration and simulation; ODE models and simulation, stability analysis, attractors, oscillations and limiting behavior, mathematical consequences of feedback, and multiple time-scales. Three hours of class meetings and two hours of computer laboratory sessions per week. Within the biology major, this course may count as the mathematics credit or as biology credit, but not both. Students are expected to have taken a year of high school or college biology prior to this course. Formerly Mathematics 174.

202. 3-D Digital Animation Studio
Carey Phillips M 1:30 - 3:55, W 1:30 - 3:55 Hatch-102
Explores the uses of art and three-dimensional animations in communicating complex dynamic and spatial relationships, primarily as they pertain to explaining scientific concepts. Students use primary literature to explore a science problem in a seminar-type format. Study of filmmaking and use of high-end three-dimensional animation software. Concludes with a team effort to create a three-dimensional animated film of the science problem.

210. Plant Physiology
Barry Logan M 11:30 - 12:25, W 11:30 - 12:25, F 11:30 - 12:25 Sills-111
An introduction to the physiological processes that enable plants to grow under the varied conditions found in nature. General topics discussed include the acquisition, transport, and use of water and mineral nutrients, photosynthetic carbon assimilation, and the influence of environmental and hormonal signals on development and morphology. Adaptation and acclimation to extreme environments and other ecophysiological subjects are also discussed. Weekly laboratories reinforce principles discussed in lecture and expose students to modern research techniques.

212. Genetics and Molecular Biology
Jack Bateman M 10:30 - 11:25, W 10:30 - 11:25, F 10:30 - 11:25 Druckenmiller-020
Integrated coverage of organismic and molecular levels of genetic systems. Topics include modes of inheritance, the structure and function of chromosomes, the mechanisms and control of gene expression, recombination, mutagenesis, techniques of molecular biology, and human genetic variation. Laboratory sessions are scheduled.

213. Neurobiology
Hadley Horch M 11:30 - 12:25, W 11:30 - 12:25, F 11:30 - 12:25 Druckenmiller-020
Examines fundamental concepts in neurobiology from the molecular to the systems level. Topics include neuronal communication, gene regulation, morphology, neuronal development, axon guidance, mechanisms of neuronal plasticity, sensory systems, and the molecular basis of behavior and disease. Weekly lab sessions introduce a wide range of methods used to examine neurons and neuronal systems.

217. Developmental Biology
William Jackman T 11:30 - 12:55, TH 11:30 - 12:55 Druckenmiller-020
An examination of current concepts of embryonic development, with an emphasis on experimental design. Topics include cell fate specification, morphogenetic movements, cell signaling, differential gene expression and regulation, organogenesis, and the evolutionary context of model systems. Project-oriented laboratory work emphasizes experimental methods. Lectures and three hours of laboratory per week.

219. Biology of Marine Organisms
Amy Johnson T 8:30 - 9:55, TH 8:30 - 9:55 Druckenmiller-016
The study of the biology and ecology of marine mammals, seabirds, fish, intertidal and subtidal invertebrates, algae, and plankton. Also considers the biogeographic consequences of global and local ocean currents on the evolution and ecology of marine organisms. Laboratories, field trips, and research projects emphasize natural history, functional morphology, and ecology. Lectures and three hours of laboratory or field trip per week. One weekend field trip included.

225. Community, Ecosystem, and Global Change Ecology
John Lichter M 10:30 - 11:25, W 10:30 - 11:25, F 10:30 - 11:25 Druckenmiller-004
Community ecology is the study of dynamic patterns in the distribution and abundance of organisms. Ecosystem ecology is the study of the flow of energy and cycling of matter through ecological communities. Global change ecology examines how human activities alter communities and ecosystems and how these changes play out at the global scale. Topics include the creation and maintenance of biodiversity, the complexity of species interactions in food webs, the role of disturbance in ecological processes, the importance of biodiversity in ecosystem processes, and human influences on global biogeochemical cycles and climate change. Laboratory sessions consist of local field trips, team research exercises, and independent field research projects. Current and classic scientific literature is discussed weekly.

232. Biochemistry
Danielle Dube T 10:00 - 11:25, TH 10:00 - 11:25 Druckenmiller-016
Focuses on the chemistry of living organisms. Topics include structure, conformation, and properties of the major classes of biomolecules (proteins, nucleic acids, carbohydrates, and lipids); enzyme mechanisms, kinetics, and regulation; metabolic transformations; energetics and metabolic control.

253. Neurophysiology
Patsy Dickinson T 8:30 - 9:55, TH 8:30 - 9:55 The Hazelton Room (Kanbar 109)
A comparative study of the function of the nervous system in invertebrate and vertebrate animals. Topics include the physiology of individual nerve cells and their organization into larger functional units, the behavioral responses of animals to cues from the environment, and the neural mechanisms underlying such behaviors. Lectures and four hours of laboratory work per week.

274. Marine Conservation Biology
Damon Gannon F 8:30 - 5:25 Druckenmiller-024
Introduces key biological concepts that are essential for understanding conservation issues. Explores biodiversity in the world’s major marine ecosystems; the mechanisms of biodiversity loss at the genetic, species, and ecosystem levels; and the properties of marine systems that pose unique conservation challenges. Investigates the theory and practice of marine biodiversity conservation, focusing on the interactions among ecology, economics, and public policy. Consists of lecture/discussion, lab, field trips, guest seminars by professionals working in the field, and student-selected case studies.

304. Topics in Molecular Biology
Anne McBride M 11:30 - 12:55, W 11:30 - 12:55 Druckenmiller-110
Seminar exploring the numerous roles of ribonucleic acid, from the discovery of RNA as a cellular messenger to the development of RNAs to treat disease. Topics covered also include RNA enzymes, interactions of RNA viruses with host cells, RNA tools in biotechnology, and RNA as a potential origin of life. Focuses on discussions of papers from the primary literature.

317. Molecular Evolution
Michael Palopoli M 1:00 - 2:25, W 1:00 - 2:25 Druckenmiller-110
The dynamics of evolutionary change at the molecular level are examined. Topics include neutral theory of molecular evolution, rates and patterns of change in nucleotide sequences and proteins, molecular phylogenetics, and genome evolution. Students read and discuss papers from the scientific literature, and complete independent projects in the laboratory.

333. Advanced Cell and Molecular Biology
Bruce Kohorn M 6:45 - 9:25 Druckenmiller-110
An exploration of the multiple ways cells have evolved to transmit signals from their external environment to cause alterations in cell architecture, physiology, and gene expression. Examples are drawn from both single-cell and multi-cellular organisms, including bacteria, fungi, algae, land plants, insects, worms, and mammals. Emphasis is on the primary literature, with directed discussion and some background introductory remarks for each class.

394. The Ecology and Environmental History of Merrymeeting Bay
John Lichter TH 1:00 - 2:25 Druckenmiller-110
Merrymeeting Bay, a globally rare, inland freshwater river delta and estuary that supports productive and diverse biological communities, is home to numerous rare and endangered species and is critical habitat for migratory and resident waterfowl, as well as anadromous fish. Explores the ecology and environmental history of Merrymeeting Bay in order to understand how its rare natural habitats might best be managed. Students participate in a thorough review of the scientific and historical literature related to Merrymeeting Bay, and help plan, conduct, and analyze a group study investigating some aspect of the ecology and/or environmental history of the bay, with the intent of submitting a manuscript for publication in an appropriate scientific journal.