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Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Bhopal


CHM 625: Biophysical chemistry (4)

Prerequisites: CHM222/PHY309, CHM 321, CHM322/PHY303, CHM421/CHM621/PHY306/PHY621, PHY304/604 or equivalent

Learning Objectives:

The prime objective of this course is to understand structure and dynamical properties of biomolecules, forces responsible for biological processes. Understanding structure function relationship of biomolecules using various instrumental techniques is also one of the main learning objectives of this course.

Course Contents:

Structure of Proteins and Nucleic Acids: Primary and secondary structure, Ramachandran plot, conformational analysis, tertiary structure, structure of a nucleotide chain, the DNA double helix model, polymorphism.

Molecular Forces in Biological Structures: Electrostatic interactions, hydrophobic and hydrophilic forces, hydrogen bonding interactions, ionic interactions, stabilizing forces in proteins and nucleic acids, steric interactions.

Configurational Statistics of Biomacromolecules: End-to-end distance and radius of gyration of a polymer chain, statistics of random coils, persistence length, rotational isomeric state model, helix-coil transition and the Zimm-Bragg model, cooperativity in ligand binding and folding, allosteric transitions.

Dynamics of Biomacromolecules: Brownian motion and the random walk model, Fick’s law of diffusion, friction and diffusion coefficients, Langevin equation and time correlation functions, Kramer’s theory of crossing a potential barrier.

Techniques to Study Structure-Function Inter-relationships: Applications of CD, fluorescence, NMR in characterizing biomolecular systems, use of FRET in understanding conformational dynamics.

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