Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo / Portale Web di Ateneo


Environmental Biochemistry
Biochimica Ambientale

A.Y. Credits
2015/2016 8
Lecturer Email Office hours for students
Laura Chiarantini

Assigned to the Degree Course

Date Time Classroom / Location

Learning Objectives

Course objectives include an understanding of the molecular basis of biological systems, and of the biochemical mechanisms which regulate cellular metabolic activities. The course treats the structure, properties, functions and interactions of the main classes of biological molecules (proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, nucleic acids) and the basic metabolic pathways through which these molecules form, degrade and are used by prokaryote and eukaryote organisms (animal and vegetable). Particular attention will be paid to metabolism, and to the toxicity of xenobiotic molecules of environmental interest.


Introduction to Biochemical processes
Functional groups
Metabolic Processes
Chemistry and function of glucids
Chemistry and function of lipids
Chemistry and function of proteins
Chemistry and function of Nucleic acids
Chemistry and function of vitamins
Enzymes, Structure, Enzyme classification, Mechanisms of action, Regulation
Structure and function of cellular membrane
Structure and function of procariotic and eucariotic cell
Glucids metabolism
Lipids metabolism
Proteins metabolism
Energy balance, Electron transfer and oxigen consumption,  Oxidative phosphorylation, photophosphorilation
Metabolic regulations
Detoxification and Metabolic Activation of Xenobiotics, Toxicology. Biotrasformations, Cytochrome P450, Mutagenesis, Cancerogenesis

Use of databases for bibliography

Bridging Courses

Inorganic Chemistry

Organic Chemistry

Learning Achievements (Dublin Descriptors)

The student will have to show competence in the basic understanding of the structure, function and metabolism of the principal macromolecules with particular reference to the environment.

The student will have to comprehend the concepts and the theories presented in the course; and be able to analyse the overall cellular role of xenobiotics of environmental interest; the student will also have to be capable of identifying both criticalities and strong points in the workings of environmental biochemistry.

Teaching Material

The teaching material prepared by the lecturer in addition to recommended textbooks (such as for instance slides, lecture notes, exercises, bibliography) and communications from the lecturer specific to the course can be found inside the Moodle platform › blended.uniurb.it

Supporting Activities

Presentation slides used during lessons will be provided but this material will not be sufficient for completing the necessary study.

Didactics, Attendance, Course Books and Assessment


The course comprises face-to-face lessons for teaching as well as for gaining insight into the creation of up-to-date biographies.

Course books

Please contact me for an alternative bibliography


The examination is oral and begins with a question of the student's choice

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