BIOL 316 (Fall)

Biomembranes and Organelles

Offered in 2018-2019

H. Zheng (Coordinator)
(514) 398-1328
A. Watt
Bellini 265
(514) 398-2806
3 credits (3-0-6)
BIOL 201 or ANAT 212 / BIOC 212 or BIOL 219
“Long ago it became evident that the key to every biological problem must finally be sought in the cell, for every living organism is, or at some time has been, a cell.” The central importance of Cell Biology in biological sciences was well summarized by E.B. Wilson (1856-1939), a pioneering American zoologist and geneticist. The emphasis of this course is on the molecular basis of the structure, generation and function of eukaryotic cell membranes and organelles and their medical impacts. The lectures will discuss some advanced topics, such as membrane structure, ion transport, cell energetics in different organelles, endomembrane system, vesicle trafficking, cell-cell contact and communications. As a subject of experimental science, the rapid advance in cell biology is largely dependent on and driven by results from laboratory research. Therefore, some classical and modern experimental methods to study cells will also be discussed. 

The lectures will discuss the following advanced cell biology topics:

1. Membrane structure: membrane lipid and proteins; membrane transport; ion channels in nerve cells

2. Cellular energetics: function and biogenesis of mitochondria and chloroplasts, the role of mitochondria in aging

3. Endomembrane system: The dynamics and function of ER, Golgi and post-Golgi organelles; protein trafficking and human diseases

4. Social interaction of cells: extra-cellular matrix and plant cell walls

Molecular Biology of the Cell, 5th edition, by B. Alberts, A. Johnson, J. Lewis, M. Raff, K. Roberts and P. Walter.
Three hours of lectures per week.
Two assignments and a final exam      

 McGill University values academic integrity. Therefore all students must understand the meaning and consequences of cheating, plagiarism and other academic offences under the Code of Student Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures (see for more information).

Last update: March 22, 2019