AGRIC 2501RW - Animal and Plant Biochemistry (Vet-Bio) II

Roseworthy Campus - Semester 1 - 2017

This course provides an advanced introduction to the fundamental processes of plant, animal and microbial metabolism. Topics will include protein structure and function, mechanisms and control of enzyme action, the biochemistry of carbohydrate, fat and protein metabolism, energy generation, and the fundamentals of nucleic acid biochemistry. Examples of the application and context of key biochemical concepts to areas of science including plant and animal science, viticulture and oenology, veterinary medicine and food technology will be used to highlight the importance of biochemistry to all sectors of these sciences.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code AGRIC 2501RW
    Course Animal and Plant Biochemistry (Vet-Bio) II
    Coordinating Unit School of Agriculture, Food and Wine
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s Roseworthy Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 6 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites CHEM 1510 or CHEM 1511 & CHEM 1520 or CHEM 1521
    Assumed Knowledge BIOLOGY 1510 & BIOLOGY 1520
    Restrictions Available to B Sc (Veterinary Bioscience) students only
    Assessment Quizzes, practical reports, examinations, tutorials, oral presentations
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Associate Professor Christopher Ford

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1 Describe the role of thermodynamics in the determination of biochemical reactivity and differentiate between the kinetic and thermodynamic factors influencing biochemical reactions.
    2 Explain how protein structure and function is derived from the constituent amino acids, and compare the features of structural and globular proteins.
    3 Describe the basic principles governing the rate of enzyme catalysed reactions and the forms of inhibition of enzyme-catalysed reactions.
    4 Describe the major pathways of carbohydrate and lipid metabolism and demonstrate how energy is stored and released through them.
    5  Explain how the functional diversity of lipids is derived from their composition.
    6 Describe the basic features of the cellular metabolism of amino acids and nucleic acids.
    7 At the end of this course, students will have demonstrated familiarity and competence with the practical skills and techniques used in biochemical research and analysis. This will include experimental planning, the preparation of reagents and use of basic instrumentation (spectrophotometers, centrifuges, chromatographic apparatus etc), the collection of biochemical data and its presentation, and most importantly, the analysis and interpretation of the outcomes of biochemical investigations.
    8 At the end of this course, students will have demonstrated the ability to undertake the research, preparation and delivery of presentations of biochemical topics selected to reinforce and augment the material presented in lectures.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    There is no required textbook for this course.
    Recommended Resources

    The recommended text for this course is Tymoczko, Stryer and Berg (2015) Biochemistry A Short Course 3rd Edition.
    Advanced treatment of topics covered during the course will be found in many of the major undergraduate biochemical textbooks. Students seeking further details and greater coverage of topics than are provided by the recommended text are encouraged to consider supplementing their study using one of these. Other good biochemistry texts include:

    • Nelson and Cox (2012) Lehninger’s Principles of Biochemistry 6th Edition
    • Berg, Tymoczko and Stryer (2006) Biochemistry 6th Edition
    • Mathews, Van Holde and Ahern (2000) Biochemistry.

    A limited number of copies of some of these texts will be held on Reserve in the Waite library.
    The publisher (WH Freeman and Company) offers a range of eBook options for access to the texts by Tymoczko et al., Berg et al. and Nelson & Cox. Some of these may be available for use by Australian students

    A shorter biochemistry ebook suitable for Kindle readers or the Kindle App on iPads etc, Instant Notes in Biochemistry 2nd Edition, by David Hames, is available for purchase or short-term rental from the Kindle store. While this book does not cover topics in the depth provided by any of the major textbooks mentioned above, it nonetheless provides a useful background to all of the topics covered in the course.
    A reading list of references relevant to topics covered in the course, which in many instances will provide the research context around these topics, is provided and can be accessed from MyUni. Individual articles contained on the reading list may be downloaded for private study. From time to time during the course, lecturing staff, tutors etc may suggest that you read additional scientific papers. These will be made available for online reading and download via MyUni; full details will be given as appropriate.

    Online Learning

    MyUni: Teaching materials and course documentation will be posted on the MyUni website (

    Course administration is accomplished using MyUni: activities will include email, announcements, lecture handouts and recordings, an online reading list and links to past examinations. Coursework assignments may be submitted through Turnitin as directed. Coursework marks will be made available through the Gradebook. Assessment in the form of online quizzes will be offered during the semester as a part of the Formative Assessment component. All materials will be released at the relevant time during the semester.
    Online activities for use before practical classes will be delivered using Learning Activity Management System (LAMS).

  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    2 Lectures per week, delivered on same day – taught in one block of 2.5hr duration. Each student will participate in 1 Tutorial of 2 hours per week conducted in learning teams, incorporating short answer and case-based learning activities. Each student will participate in 1 Practical of 2 hours per week. Practicals are supported by interactive online learning modules developed in articulate storyline and LAMS. Students will receive lecture notes and tutorial papers online and will be provided with printed copies of the Practical Manual and a laboratory notebook. The lecture content is reinforced and supported by the tutorial and practical content.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    A student enrolled in a 3 unit course, such as this, should expect to spend, on average 12 hours per week on the studies required. This includes both the formal contact time required to the course (e.g., lectures and practicals), as well as non-contact time (e.g., reading, revision and online learning activities).
    Learning Activities Summary
    Standard lectures – themes:

    Protein structure and function
    Enzymes and Enzyme Kinetics
    Lipid biochemistry and metabolism
    Carbohydrate biochemistry Carbohydrate metabolism and biological energy transformation
    Amino acids

    Context lectures – themes:

    Fatty acids – the good, the bad and the ugly fat
    Cell signalling and strength
    Ruminant metabolic disorders
    Sports physiology and nutrition.


    Analysis of nitrite
    Enzyme Kinetics
    The effects of pH on enzyme activity
    Ion-exchange chromatography
    Glycogen Hydrolysis


    Biochemical calculations;
    Protein structure and function
    Enzyme activity and kinetics
    Lipids A
    Lipids B
    Carbohydrates and connective tissue
    ATP and metabolism Glycolysis
    TCA and Oxidative Phosphorylation
    Specific Course Requirements
    PRACTICAL SESSION CODE OF CONDUCT All students must follow these rules in practical exercises:

    • No eating, drinking, application of makeup, etc in laboratories; no water bottles or items of food or drink may be visible in laboratories; mobile phone calls to be taken and made outside the laboratory only.
    • Closed shoes must be worn at all times in all practical exercises, wherever they are held.
    • Lab coats and other personal protective equipment must be worn at all times in laboratories or other areas whenever students are instructed to wear them; these should be removed when leaving the laboratory.
    • Bags, coats, etc. that are brought into a lab must be placed under the bench to avoid causing obstructions.
    • All containers used during a practical session must be labelled, including water and other common non-toxic substances.
    • Report all accidents, personal or involving experimental materials, to the person in charge.
    • Playing around in a laboratory and many other work areas is dangerous; participants in improper behaviour will be asked to leave.
    • Students must dispose of materials as directed.
    • Students must wash their hands upon departing the labs and other work areas.
    • Students must clean and tidy their bench and/or work area before departure; benches and/or work areas will be inspected at the end of each practical session.
    • Students not complying with the rules will not receive credit for the practical session in which the breach occurred.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Task Type Weighting Learning Outcome
    Mid-Semester Exam Summative 25% 1,2,4,5
    End-of-Semester exam Summative 25% 3,4,6
    Practical class assessment  Formative & Summative 25% 7
    Tutorial assessments_including team-based learning assessments Formative & Summative 10% 1-6,8
    Online quizzes  Formative & Summative 5% 1-6
    Big Bang Biochemistry  Formative & Summative 10% 1-6,8
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Assessment Related Requirements

    Attendance at practicals and tutorials is compulsory; it is not acceptable to leave part-way through classes.

    To pass the course students must gain an overall scaled mark of at least 50% when the marks for the Summative and Formative components are added together.

    Hurdle requirements:

    Students must achieve at least 40% of the total marks for the Summative Assessment component, i.e. a combined mark of not less than 72/180 for the mid-semester assessment and the end of semester examinations.

    Assessment Detail
    Exams (50% of total course grade). Two exams will be given to address understanding of the material. The first test will be given mid-term to provide the students a benchmark for the progress in the course. A second summative test will be given at the end of the semester to ensure summative knowledge of course material. Material will be examined only once – mid-semester exam covers work up to mid-semester; end of semester exam covers work after mid-semester break.

    Practical Assessments: (25% of total course grade). There will be eight practical classes conducted per student over the course of the semester. Six of these will incorporate assessment of work, submitted as part of their laboratory notebook which will be submitted and assessed twice in the semester and the combined mark will form 10% of their final course grade. One full report, worth 10% of the final course grade, will be required for the ion exchange practical. A further 5% will come from a 45 minute biochemical calculations and practical theory test. All submitted work will be returned with feedback within 4 weeks of submission.

    Tutorial assessments (10% of total course grade): Each student will undertake four multiple choice quizzes throughout the semester. Each test will first be undertaken as an individual and then the same test will be completed in the students learning teams. The combined score for the student’s individual tests will form 5% of their final course grade and the combined score for the team tests will form another 5% of their final grade. Within each week’s tutorial class, students will also work within their learning teams on short answer and case-based learning activities. The members of the learning team will conduct a peer review of their team members contributions during the tutorial sessions and team based learning tests. The students peer review mark will form 5% of their final course grade.

    Online quizzes (5% of total course grade): During the semester, 5 online quizzes will be set from within MyUni/Assessments. Each quiz will contain 10 questions, which will comprise a number of formats including but not limited to multiple choice, missing words, ordering and calculations. Quizzes will normally be available for a four-day period including weekends, which will be announced via a MyUni Announcement and email to each student. Students will thus answer a total of 50 questions during the semester. The quizzes are intended to provide each student with a brief assessment of their knowledge of topics covered in recent and past lectures and tutorials. Each quiz may be attempted only once; students will receive full answers upon completion of the quiz.

    5-Minute Big Bang Biochemistry (10% of total course grade): Students, working in pairs, will make a 5-minute presentation to the class on a topic of their choice. The students must explain the biochemistry behind their topic including presenting the associated signalling pathway.
    Late Submission
    If an extension is not applied for, or not granted then a penalty for late submission will apply. A penalty of 10% of the value of the assignment for each calendar day that the assignment is late (i.e. weekends count as 2 days), up to a maximum of 50% of the available marks will be applied. This means that an assignment that is 5 days late or more without an approved extension can only receive a maximum of 50% of the marks available for that assignment.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

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