KD1500 Physical Biochemistry 7.5 credits

Fysikalisk biokemi

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Course information

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents *

The course consists of two parts that deal with biochemical thermodynamics and kinetics in biochemistry.

Biochemical thermodynamics

A living organism is constantly changing: ions are pumped over membranes, signal substances diffuse through the cytoplasm, proteins are built up, formed and broken down, molecules are broken down to give us energy. The driving forces behind these processes can be described based on the laws of thermodynamics. Based on given conditions, the sequence of events can be predicted. In this course, the concepts are described and put into a biological context. The course aims to give the student the opportunity to understand and predict biological and biochemical processes based on basic physical chemistry.

The parts of thermodynamics:

  • The first law of thermodynamics.
  • Internal energy and enthalpy.
  • The second law of thermodynamics.
  • Entropy.
  • Gibb’s free energy.
  • Phase equilibrium and phase transitions, among others for biopolymers and bioaggregates.
  • Chemical balance.
  • Effects of catalysts and of temperature, proton transfers and equilibrium
  • Ion and electron transport.

Kinetics in Biochemistry

Kinetics is the science of the speed of chemical reactions. By studying how quickly an enzyme breaks down a substrate, detailed information about the reaction mechanism can be obtained.

The parts of kinetics:

  • Reakton cross-sections.
  • Reaction laws and mechanisms.
  • Complex biochemical processes.
  • Enzyme catalysis.

Prerequisites equivalent to KD1510 Chemical equilibrium are recommended.

Intended learning outcomes *

After completion of the course the student shall have

Knowledge and understanding to:

  • Describe the basic theories of thermodynamics, for example the first and second laws with terms such as internal energy, enthalpy, entropy and Gibb’s free energy.
  • Be able to apply the basic theories to explain driving forces in biological and biochemical systems.
  • Be able to apply kinetic theory to draw conclusions about biochemical processes such as enzymatically catalyzed reactions.

Course Disposition

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Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites *

BB1150, KD1020

Recommended prerequisites

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Equipment

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Literature

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Examination and completion

Grading scale *

A, B, C, D, E, FX, F

Examination *

  • LAB1 - Laboratory Assignment, 1.5 credits, Grading scale: P, F
  • TEN1 - Examination 1, 3.0 credits, Grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F
  • TEN2 - Examination 2, 3.0 credits, Grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

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Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

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Examiner

Mårten Ahlquist

Further information

Course web

Further information about the course can be found on the Course web at the link below. Information on the Course web will later be moved to this site.

Course web KD1500

Offered by

CBH/Theoretical Chemistry and Biology

Main field of study *

Technology

Education cycle *

First cycle

Add-on studies

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Contact

Mårten Ahlquist, ahlqui@kth.se

Ethical approach *

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Supplementary information

Course responsible Mårten Ahlquist (ahlqui@kth.se)

Overlaps with the courses KD1040, KD1050, KE1030 and KE1160.