COURSE OUTLINE: BS2004

Course Title

Molecular and Cell Biology II

Course Code

BS2004

Offered Study Year 2, Semester 2
Course Coordinator Koh Cheng Gee (Assoc Prof) CGKoh@ntu.edu.sg 6316 2854
Pre-requisites BS1007
AU 3
Contact hours Lectures: 24, Tutorials: 12
Approved for delivery from AY 2019/20 semester 2
Last revised 8 Oct 2019, 09:21

Course Aims

This course aims to provide students with theoretical knowledge in the field of molecular and cell biology as well as training in data analysis. The course covers processes such as protein synthesis, protein trafficking, apoptosis, cell adhesion and cell signalling. Students will understand cancer biology from the molecular and cellular perspectives. The basic principles underlying signal transduction, and post-translational modification will also be discussed.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Upon successfully completing this course, you should be able to:

  1. Analyse experimental data and propose possible molecular mechanisms which lead to the experimental results observed
  2. Interpret and explain relationships between cell to cell communication, cell signalling and diseases e.g. bacterial toxins and diarrhoea
  3. Design experiments to explore cellular functions and activities e.g. assays to evaluate apoptosis.

Course Content

The variety of genomes in eukaryotic cells (mitochondrial and plastid genomes)

Protein synthesis from RNA

Compartmentalisation of eukaryote organelles in the cell

Protein trafficking at the molecular level

Post-translational modifications and quality control of protein

Functions and activity of proteins due to phosphorylation, acetylation and ubiquitinylation

Cell communication, including different types of cell to cell signalling, nature of signalling molecules,

Cell signalling including second messengers, activation of G-protein coupled receptors, activation of kinases

Cell adhesion and ECM (extracellular matrix)

Cancer, including oncogenes, tumour suppressors and hallmarks

Molecular basis of apoptosis

Fundamental Immunology

Assessment

Component Course ILOs tested SBS Graduate Attributes tested Weighting Team / Individual Assessment Rubrics
Continuous Assessment
Mid-semester Quiz
Multiple Choice Questions 1, 2, 3 1. a, b, c
2. a, f
3. c
5. c
7. a
20 individual
Short Answer Questions 1, 2, 3 1. a, b, c
2. a, f
3. c, e
5. c
7. a
20 individual See Appendix for rubric
Examination (2.5 hours)
Long questions 1, 2, 3 1. a, b, c
2. a, e, f
3. c, e
5. c
7. a
36 individual See Appendix for rubric
Multiple Choice Questions 1, 2, 3 1. a, b, c
2. a, f
3. c, e
5. c
7. a
24 individual
Total 100%

These are the relevant SBS Graduate Attributes.

1. Recognize the relationship and complexity between structure and function of all forms of life, resulting from an academically rigorous in-depth understanding of biological concepts

a. Possess a conceptual framework that identifies the relationships between the major domains in the field of biology.

b. Explain the relationship between structure and function of all forms of life at the molecular level

c. Explain the relationship between structure and function of all forms of life at the cellular level

2. Critically evaluate and analyze biological information by applying the knowledge, scientific methods and technical skills associated with the discipline

a. Identify the assumptions behind scientific problems and issues

e. Analyze the validity of qualitative and quantitative scientific data

f. Evaluate results in primary biological literature

3. Develop and communicate biological ideas and concepts relevant in everyday life for the benefit of society

c. Demonstrate an understanding of the recursive nature of science, where new results continually modify previous knowledge

e. Discuss current critical questions in the field of biology

5. Develop communication, creative and critical thinking skills for life-long learning

c. Demonstrate critical thinking skills such as analysis, discrimination, logical reasoning, prediction and transforming knowledge

7. Demonstrate information literacy and technological fluency

a. Locate and evaluate information needed to make decisions, solve problems, design experiments, and understand scientific data

Formative Feedback

1. Students will receive feedback on the assessment of short and essay type questions given as part of the tutorial. This will help the students to achieve Intended Learning Outcomes 1, 2, 3 dependent on the questions set in the Continual Assessment.

2. An examiner's report will be released through NTULearn to help the students to understand the rationale behind the questions in the exam papers whether the questions are designed for understanding of facts and concepts, application of facts and concepts to solve problems or to evaluate and analyse data, to design experiments to test concept etc.

Learning and Teaching Approach

Lectures
(24 hours)

Key concepts on molecular and cell biology as listed in the course content will be covered during the lectures. Videos and animations are used to enhance learning and visualisation of topics covered e.g. the activation of G-protein couple receptor.

The students are also asked to read papers prior to some of the lectures. Quick Q&A rounds will be conducted using ResponseWare to assess understanding of the topics read during the lecture.

Tutorials
(12 hours)

Questions related to the lecture content will be set as tutorial questions for the students to attempt prior to attending the tutorials. The tutors will discuss the answers to the questions with the students. The tutorial is also the time for the students to ask the tutors about course content which they do not understand.

Reading and References

Molecular Biology of the Cell.
Garland Science. Edition: 6th. Author(s):Bruce Alberts, Alexander Johnson, Julian Lewis, David Morgan, Martin Raff, Keith Roberts, Peter Walter. ISBN: 9780815344322

Molecular Cell Biology.
MacMillan. edition: 8th. Authors: Harvey Lodish, Arnold Berk, Chris A. Kaiser, Monty Krieger, Anthony Bretscher, Hidde Ploegh , Angelika Amon , Kelsey C. Martin. ISBN-10: 1-4641-8339-2; ISBN-13: 978-1-4641-8339-3.

Course Policies and Student Responsibilities

You are expected to complete all assigned activities, attend all classes punctually and take the assessment seriously. You are expected to take responsibility to follow up with course notes, assignments and course related announcements for lectures you have missed. You are expected to actively participate in class discussions and activities during the tutorials.

Academic Integrity

Good academic work depends on honesty and ethical behaviour. The quality of your work as a student relies on adhering to the principles of academic integrity and to the NTU Honour Code, a set of values shared by the whole university community. Truth, Trust and Justice are at the core of NTU’s shared values.

As a student, it is important that you recognize your responsibilities in understanding and applying the principles of academic integrity in all the work you do at NTU. Not knowing what is involved in maintaining academic integrity does not excuse academic dishonesty. You need to actively equip yourself with strategies to avoid all forms of academic dishonesty, including plagiarism, academic fraud, collusion and cheating. If you are uncertain of the definitions of any of these terms, you should go to the Academic Integrity website for more information. Consult your instructor(s) if you need any clarification about the requirements of academic integrity in the course.

Course Instructors

Instructor Office Location Phone Email
Koh Cheng Gee (Assoc Prof) 03n-38 6316 2854 CGKoh@ntu.edu.sg

Planned Weekly Schedule

Week Topic Course ILO Readings/ Activities
1

The variety of genomes in eukaryotic cells (mitochondrial and plastid genomes)

1, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

2

Protein synthesis from RNA

1, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

3

Compartmentalisation of eukaryote organelles in the cell

1, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

4

Continual Assessment. Quiz 1

1, 3

quiz

5

Protein trafficking at the molecular level

1, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

6

Post-translational modifications and quality control of protein

1, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

7

Cell communication, including different types of cell to cell signalling, nature of signalling molecules,

1, 2, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

8

Cell signalling including second messengers, activation of G-protein coupled receptors, activation of kinases

1, 2, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

9

Continual Assessment. Quiz 2

1, 2, 3

quiz

10

Cell adhesion and ECM (extracellular matrix)

1, 2, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

11

Apoptosis

1, 2, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

12

Cancer, including oncogenes, tumour suppressors and hallmarks

1, 2, 3

Lecture, tutorial, reading

13

Fundamental Immunology

1, 2, 3

Lecture, tutorial,reading

Appendix 1: Assessment Rubrics

Rubric for Mid-semester Quiz: Short Answer Questions (20%)

Score / Criteria 4 3 2 1
Content

Key points are clearly stated, explained, and well supported.

Key points are stated and supported.

Few Key points are addressed. Lack sufficient supports.

Key points are not clear. Question not properly answered.

Organization

Writing easy to follow.

Writing mostly clear

Writing not very easy to follow.

Writing mostly unclear.

Writing

No errors in spelling, grammar, and sentence structure.

Few errors in spelling, grammar, and sentence structure.

Many errors in spelling, grammar, and sentence structure.

Full of errors in spelling, grammar, and sentence structure.

NOTE: Scores will be scaled to 20%.

Rubric for Examination: Long questions (36%)

Score / Criteria 4 3 2 1
Content

Key points are clearly stated, explained, and well supported.

Key points are stated and supported.

Few Key points are addressed. Lack sufficient supports.

Key points are not clear. Question not properly answered.

Organization

Writing easy to follow.

Writing mostly clear

Writing not very easy to follow.

Writing mostly unclear.

Writing

No errors in spelling, grammar, and sentence structure.

Few errors in spelling, grammar, and sentence structure.

Many errors in spelling, grammar, and sentence structure.

Full of errors in spelling, grammar, and sentence structure.

NOTE: Scores will be scaled to 36%.

Appendix 2: Intended Affective Outcomes

As a result of this course, it is expected you will develop the following "big picture" attributes:

Appreciate the underlying causes of diseases e.g. cancer

Appreciate the molecular basis of cell functions and processes.

Appreciate the complexity of biological systems e.g. cell signalling, protein degradation etc