Biochemistry

Program Description

The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry embraces and supports the overall mission of La Salle University. We strive to create and maintain a nurturing, supportive environment for both students and faculty as we advance our understanding of biochemistry and its application to the world around us. Our goal is to establish a community of curious and knowledgeable active learners. Implicit in the mission is a profound respect for the individual learner and an emphasis on the ethical responsibility of scientific inquiry towards the broader local, national and global communities.

Why take this major?

Our graduates have attended some of the best graduate schools in the country including Princeton, Harvard, Berkeley, Johns Hopkins, Georgetown, and Caltech. Many of our students have become physicians, laywers, or teachers, while other graduates have obtained lucrative employment in the biochemical industry.

No matter what their chosen career path, our graduates excel because our department trains them in the critical thinking and problem solving. As a liberal arts university, La Salle has a curriculum that offers a solid background in the fundamentals of chemical and biochemical sciences coupled with a broad-based education. Students are made aware of the interconnections of biochemistry with the other sciences and also with the social sciences, business, and the humanities. With such an education, our graduates leave La Salle as dynamic, adaptable, and prepared individuals ready for almost anything they will face in the future.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Students will execute biochemical experimental laboratory techniques.
  • Students will communicate scientific ideas and research both orally and in writing to both general and scientific audiences.
  • Students will persist, think critically, and problem solve in tackling complex scientific problems.
  • Students will explain the importance of biochemistry in addressing societal issues.
  • Students will explain, visualize, and interpret biochemistry at a macroscopic or (molecular) microscopic level.

Program Contact Information

William Price

Chair

Holroyd Hall 345

price@lasalle.edu

(215) 951-1261

Degree Earned

B.S.

Number of Courses Required for Graduation

Major: 19 Courses: 9-11 Chemistry, 3-5 Biology, 2 Math, 2 Physics, 1 Computer Science

Total: 38

Number of Credits Required for Graduation

Major: 73

Total: 130 to 132 depending on options chosen

GPA Required for Graduation

Major: 2.0

Cumulative: 2.0

Progress Chart

Level One - Core Courses

12 courses and 2 modules required

Universal Required Courses (4 Courses)

Students must complete the following 4 courses.

ILO 8.1: Written Communication

ENG 110 - College Writing I: Persuasion

ILO 5.1: Information Literacy

ENG 210 - College Writing II: Research

ILO 1.1: Understanding Diverse Perspectives

FYS 130 - First-Year Academic Seminar **

NOTE. The following students use Level 2 Capstone Experience in Major instead of FYS 130: Honors, BUSCA, Core-to-Core, Transfer, and Non-Traditional/Evening.

ILO 2.1: Reflective Thinking and Valuing

REL 100 - Religion Matters

Elective Core Courses (4 Courses)

Students must complete 1 course in each of the following 4 ILOs.

ILO 3.1a: Scientific Reasoning

CHM 111 - General Chemistry I

ILO 3.1b: Quantitative Reasoning

MTH 120 - Calculus I

ILO 6.1: Technological Competency

CSC 152 - Introduction to Computing: Mathematics/Science Applications

ILO 8.1a/12.1: Oral Communication/ Collaborative Engagement

Choose course within ILO

Distinct Discipline Core Courses (4 Courses)

Students must complete 1 course in each of the following 4 ILOs. Each course must be from a different discipline. (A "discipline" is represented by the 3- or 4-letter prefix attached to each course.)

ILO 4.1: Critical Analysis and Reasoning

Choose course within ILO

ILO 9.1: Creative and Artistic Expression

Choose course within ILO

ILO 10.1: Ethical Understanding and Reasoning

Choose course within ILO

ILO 11.1: Cultural and Global Awareness and Sensitivity

Choose course within ILO

Universal Required Modules (2 Courses)

Students must complete the following 2 non-credit modules.
The Modules are not required for Transfer Students, Core-to-Core Students, or BUSCA Students. BUSCA students are required to take modules if/when they pursue a bachelor’s degree.

ILO 7.1a

Health Literacy Module

ILO 7.1b

Financial Literacy Module

Major Requirements

Major requirements include 4 Level Two ILO requirements, fulfilled through the major.

Students in this major must complete 38 courses in total in order to graduate. 19 Courses: 9-11 Chemistry, 3-5 Biology, 2 Math, 2 Physics, 1 Computer Science courses will be from this major program.

Level Two (4 Courses)

Students must complete 1 course/learning experience in each of the 4 commitments.

ILO 2.2: Broader Identity (Capstone Course/Experience)

Fulfilled within major

Choose one ILO from 3.2a, 3.2b, 4.2, 5.2, 6.2, 7.2a, or 7.2b: Expanded Literacies

Fulfilled within major

ILO 8.2b: Effective Expression (Writing-Intensive Course)

Fulfilled within major

Choose on ILO from 10.2, 11.2, or 12.2: Active Responsibility

Fulfilled within major

All Other Required Courses

BIO 210 - Cellular Biology and Genetics
BIO 402 - Cell Biology
BIO 413 - Molecular Biology
CHM 111 - General Chemistry I
CHM 112 - General Chemistry II
CHM 201 - Organic Chemistry I
CHM 202 - Organic Chemistry II
CHM 212 - Quantitative Analysis
CHM 331 - Thermodynamics & Kinetics
CHM 411 - Biochemistry I
CHM 412 - Biochemistry II
CHM 499 - Capstone
CSC 152 - Introduction to Computing: Mathematics/Science Applications
MTH 120 - Calculus I
MTH 221 - Calculus II
PHY 105 - General Physics I
PHY 106 - General Physics II

 

Two Elective courses from the list below:
   For students double majoring in Biology and Biochemistry, the two electives must be Chemistry courses.
   For students double majoring in Chemistry and Biochemistry, the two electives must be Biology courses.

BIO 306 - Neurobiology
BIO 310 - Genetics
BIO 430 - Biology of Cancer
CHM 311 - Instrumental Analysis
CHM 320 - Organic Laboratory Methods
CHM 332 - Quantum Mechanics and Spectroscopy
CHM 403 - Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

 

Free Electives

In addition to the requirements listed above, students must take enough courses to the fulfill graduation credit requirements for their School and major.

Dual Major Requirements

Biology majors wishing to double major with Biochemistry need to take two Chemistry courses as their electives.

Chemistry majors wishing to double major with Biochemistry need to take two Biology courses as their electives.

Freshman Year:

   Fall:  CHM 111, MTH 120

   Spring:   CHM 112, MTH 221, CSC 152

Sophomore Year:

  Fall:   CHM 201, PHY 105

  Spring:   CHM 202, PHY 106, BIO 210

Junior Year:

  Fall:   BIO 402, Elective

  Spring:   CHM 212, CHM 331, BIO 413

Senior Year:

  Fall:   CHM 411, Elective

  Spring:   CHM 412, CHM 499

Course Descriptions

BIO 210 - Cellular Biology and Genetics

This course provides an introduction to the principles of cellular and molecular biology and genetics. Topics include basic biochemistry, cell structure and function, cellular reproduction, and molecular and classical genetics. Three hours lecture, two hours laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Restrictions: Students must be eligible for Math 113 or Math 120 and Chem 111

Prerequisites: High school or college chemistry.

ILO Met: ILO 3.1.a - Scientific Reasoning

BIO 306 - Neurobiology

This course involves a lecture-laboratory study of the nervous system, including principles of membrane biophysics, cellular neurophysiology, systems neurophysiology, and neuroanatomy. Two hours lecture; two hours laboratory.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: A final grade of C- or higher in BIO 230 is required in order to advance to 300/400-level BIO courses.

BIO 310 - Genetics

This course is an introduction to genetics at the molecular, cytological, and organismal level. Included are the thorough coverage of Mendelian and other basic transmission genetics phenomena in the light of our knowledge of DNA and cell structure and function; mutation and mutagenesis; and an introduction to recombinant DNA. Three hours lecture; three hours laboratory

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: A final grade of C- or higher in BIO 230 is required in order to advance to 300/400-level BIO courses.

BIO 402 - Cell Biology

This course examines the physical properties, chemical structure, and metabolism of simple and specialized cells, as well as recent advances in the techniques of cell culture and investigation. Two hours lecture; two hours laboratory.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: A final grade of C- or higher in BIO 230 is required in order to advance to 300/400-level BIO courses.

BIO 413 - Molecular Biology

This is a survey course that will examine the basic concepts of molecular biology. Topics include mechanisms and regulation of DNA replication, transcription, and translation, recombinant DNA technology, molecular aspects of gene interaction and recombination, cellular transformation, and the molecular biology of the nervous and immune systems. The laboratory focuses on utilizing the basic techniques currently employed in molecular biology (molecular cloning, ELISA, genetic recombination, gel electrophoresis, etc.) Three hours lecture; three hours laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: BIO 412

BIO 430 - The Biology of Cancer

The cellular and molecular mechanisms driving cancer's hallmark phenotypes will be explored. These include proliferative signaling, evading growth suppressors, resisting cell death, enabling replicative immortality, inducing angiogenesis, activating invasion and metastasis, reprogramming of energy metabolism and evading immune destruction. Within these conceptual frameworks, primary scientific literature will be examined and clinical implications of the research evaluated. Students will choose a specific area of interest, allowing them to develop an in-depth understanding of the current "state-of-the-art" in a field of research. Students will gain an informed understanding of the inherent challenges cancer presents and assess the prospects of treating and ultimately curing the disease.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: A final grade of C- or higher in BIO 230 is required in order to advance to 300/400-level BIO courses.

CHM 111 - General Chemistry I

General Chemistry I provides a firm basis for understanding the fundamentals of chemistry. This course covers atomic and molecular structure, stoichiometry, thermochemistry, and the periodic table. The descriptive chemistry is principally concerned with the reactions of nonmetals and of ions in solution. The course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall, Summer

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: MTH 101 (C+ or better) or equivalent

ILO Met: ILO 3.1.a - Scientific Reasoning

CHM 112 - General Chemistry II

General Chemistry II builds on the concepts of General Chemistry I and focuses on gasses, properties of solutions, kinetics, equilibrium, acid-base chemistry, and electrochemistry. The laboratory experiments reinforce the concepts covered in lecture. The course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Spring, Summer

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 111 (C- or better)

CHM 201 - Organic Chemistry I

Organic Chemistry is the study of compounds containing carbon. This course is focused on the structure, bonding, and stereochemistry of these compounds together with an introduction to reactions, reaction mechanisms, and synthesis. This course, as well as CHM 202, is intended for students majoring in chemistry, biochemistry, and biology as well as those pursuing a career in the health professions. The laboratory introduces techniques used in organic synthesis, separation, purification, and structure elucidation. The course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall, Summer

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 112 (C- or better)

CHM 202 - Organic Chemistry II

The second semester of Organic Chemistry builds on the foundation established in CHM 201. The functional group and mechanistic approach to organic reactions allows for a more in-depth approach to organic synthesis. The use of basic spectral methods as a means of structure elucidation is also covered in this course. The course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Spring, Summer

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 201 (C- or better)

CHM 212 - Quantitative Analysis

This course covers important areas of analytical chemistry, including statistics, error analysis, chemical equilibria, electrochemistry, and colorimetry. This course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 112 (C- or better)

CHM 311 - Instrumental Analysis

CHM 311 covers the theory and practice of physical measurments with modern chemical instrumentation. The course is divided into two parts: spectroscopic and separation methods. Topics include UV-visible, FT-IR, fluorescence, and magnetic resonance spectroscopies as well as mass spectrometry, gas and liquid chromatographies. The course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 112 (C- or better) or permission from instructor

CHM 320 - Organic Laboratory Methods

This is a course in modern methods of organic synthesis and structure elucidation. This laboratory-intensive course emphasizes asymmetric synthesis, green chemistry, advanced spectral methods, and literature searching. The course consists of 75 minutes of lecture and six hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 202 (C- or better)

CHM 331 - Thermodynamics and Kinetics

This course applies the principles of thermodynamics and kinetics to explain the behavior of gases, liquids, solids, and solutions. Topics include the elucidation of chemical equilibria, phase transitions, reaction mechanisms, and statistical ensembles of energy states. The course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 202, MTH 221, PHY 106 (C- or better in all)

CHM 332 - Quantum Mechanics and Spectroscopy

This course uses the formalism of quantum mechanics to understand fundamental chemical systems. It explores atomic and molecular structures, molecular vibrations, and molecular rotations. It also explores the use of spectroscopy to probe these chemical processes. The course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 112, MTH 221, PHY 106 (C- or better in all)

CHM 403 - Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

This course covers theoretical and practical aspects of chemical bonding, descriptive periodic trends, and molecular structure and symmetry of molecules. A special emphasis is given to the chemistry of the transition metals, including coordination and organometallic chemistry. This course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 331, 332 (C- or better in both)

CHM 411 - Biochemistry I

Biochemistry I examines the biochemistry of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, enzymes, and hormones from a chemist's perspective and emphasizes their role in metabolic processes. Laboratory work illustrates common techniques used to isolate, identify, and assay these molecules, such as chromatography, electrophoresis, and kinetic analysis. The course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 202, CHM 331 or permission from the instructor

CHM 412 - Biochemistry II

Biochemistry II focuses on the storage, replication, transmission, and expression of genetic information. It also examines recombinant DNA methodology and physiological processes at the molecular level. Laboratory work includes the isolation and analysis of plasmid DNA, creation of a new plasmid, and transformation into bacterial cells. The course consists of three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: CHM 411

CHM 499 - Chemistry Capstone

This is the capstone course for senior-level chemistry and biochemistry majors.  It is intended to broadly expose students to select topics that span sub-disciplines in chemistry and current trends in chemical science.  The course is discussion-based and student-driven, and students will be required to examine their scientific ideas through research, reflection, and communication of topics in the chemical sciences.

Number of Credits: 1

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

CSC 152 - Introduction to Computing: Mathematics/Science Applications

This course provides a survey of computers and computer systems as well as problem-solving and computer applications for science and mathematics, including data analysis and regression. It includes an introduction to a PC-based Graphical User Interface/ windowed operating system and covers word processing, design and use of electronic spreadsheets, and presentation software. Internet use includes electronic mail and the World Wide Web.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Restrictions: Credit will be given for only one of CSC 151, 152, 154, and 155.

ILO Met: ILO 6.1 - Technological Competency

MTH 120 - Calculus I

Topics in this course include functions of various types: rational, trigonometric, exponential, logarithmic; limits and continuity; the derivative of a function and its interpretation; applications of derivatives, including finding maxima and minima and curve sketching; antiderivatives, the definite integral and approximations; the fundamental theorem of calculus; and integration using substitution. A TI graphing calculator is required.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall, Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: MTH 119 or its equivalent

ILO Met: ILO 3.1.b - Quantitative Reasoning

MTH 121 - Calculus II

This course addresses differentiation and integration of inverse trigonometric and hyperbolic functions; applications of integration, including area, volume, and arc length; techniques of integration, including integration by parts, partial fraction decomposition, and trigonometric substitution; L'Hopital's Rule; improper integrals; infinite series and convergence tests; Taylor series; parametric equations; polar coordinates; and conic sections. A TI graphing calculator is required.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: MTH 120

PHY 105 - General Physics I

Vectors, elementary mechanics of point particles and rigid bodies, and gravitation will be the topics that are explored in this course. The course is comprised of four hours of lecture and two hours of lab each week.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Fall, Summer

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: MTH 113 or its equivalent

Corequisites: PYL 105

ILO Met: ILO 3.1.a - Scientific Reasoning

PHY 106 - General Physics II

Simple harmonic motion and waves, elementary optics, electromagnetism, and DC circuits are topics of emphasis in this course. The course is comprised of four hours of lecture and two hours of lab each week.

Number of Credits: 4

When Offered: Spring, Summer

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: PHY 105

Corequisites: PYL 106