Fall 2010 Courses

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085. From Brain to Behavior
Hadley Horch M  9:30 - 10:25
W  9:30 - 10:25
F  9:30 - 10:25
All human social, cognitive and sexual behaviors require complex functions of the nervous system. For example, the brain and spinal cord together work to control body movements, senses, learning and memory, language, emotions, and all other complex thought processes. This survey course focuses on the biology underlying these nervous system functions. Diseases of the brain, drug actions, injury and repair will also be discussed. Includes comparative examinations of nervous systems in other organisms. Weekly lab sessions will be used to design and perform experiments that test the human senses.
101. Biological Principles I
Bruce Kohorn T  8:30 - 9:55
TH 8:30 - 9:55
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. Scientific Reasoning in Biology
Michael Palopoli M  8:30 - 9:25
W  8:30 - 9:25
F  8:30 - 9:25
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  1:00 - 2:25
W  1:00 - 2:25
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
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
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
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
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.
215. Behavioral Ecology and Population Biology
Nathaniel Wheelwright T  10:00 - 11:25
TH 10:00 - 11:25
Study of the behavior of animals and plants, and the interactions between organisms and their environment. Topics include population growth and structure, and the influence of competition, predation, and other factors on the behavior, abundance, and distribution of plants and animals. Laboratory sessions, field trips, and research projects emphasize concepts in ecology, evolution and behavior, research techniques, and the natural history of local plants and animals. Optional field trip to the Bowdoin Scientific Station on Kent Island.
217. Developmental Biology
Carey Phillips T  11:30 - 12:55
TH 11:30 - 12:55
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
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.
271. Biology of Marine Mammals
Damon Gannon W  9:00 - 10:25
F  9:00 - 10:25
Examines the biology of cetaceans, pinnipeds, sirenians, and sea otters. Topics covered include diversity, evolution, morphology, physiology, ecology, behavior, and conservation. Detailed consideration is given to the adaptations that allow these mammals to live in the sea. The course will consist of lecture, discussion of primary literature, lab, field trips, and student-selected case studies. Laboratory and field exercises consider anatomy, biogeography, social organization, foraging ecology, population dynamics, bioacoustics, and management of the marine mammal species found in the Gulf of Maine.
317. Molecular Evolution
Michael Palopoli M  1:00 - 2:25
W  1:00 - 2:25
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.
323. Life in Extreme Environments
Rachel Larsen M  11:30 - 12:55
W  11:30 - 12:55
Microbes can be found living in nearly every niche on earth including many that were once thought to be devoid of life. Topics include the dramatic adaptations necessary for survival and growth in extremes such as thermal vents, acid pools, desert rocks, and ancient ice. Also considers how more familiar microbes may have versatile lifestyles and adapt to varying conditions and stressors through gene regulation.
333. Advanced Cell and Molecular Biology
Bruce Kohorn M  6:45 - 9:25
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.