Students selecting either a Bachelor of Science or minor in Biochemistry are administered through the Chemistry Program and KU's Department of Physical Sciences, within the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
This major or minor, depending upon student preference, features classes such as Organic and Inorganic Chemistry. Students enrolled in the Biochemistry program seek to understand life at the level of molecules and their chemistry. You'll study living processes - the chemical reactions that occur, the structure and conformational changes of molecules, and the binding interactions between molecules.
Biochemistry asks questions such as:
- how do cells convert sugar into energy and ATP?
- why is the protein hemoglobin good at carrying oxygen in the blood?
- how do some drugs work as enzyme inhibitors?
- how do DNA mutations result in altered proteins?
- how do plants convert light into chemical energy?
In addition to providing basic knowledge about life's chemistry, biochemistry is used in medicine (drug development), agriculture, and the food industry.
Kutztown's chemistry faculty provides opportunities for students to enhance their education by participating in research projects. If students choose to participate in research, they usually do so in their junior and senior years.
Some of the benefits of participating in undergraduate research in chemistry include:
- becoming more independent in the laboratory by formulating and testing hypotheses, and interpreting results
- developing problem-solving skills
- learning by doing
- one-on-one instruction
- communication of research results through presentations or publications
Coursework and research in Biochemistry utilize facilities in the Chemistry and Biology programs. The Physical Sciences and Biology departments are housed together in the Boehm Science Center. This state-of-the art facility provides modern space for our teaching and research laboratories, and a variety of modern chemical instrumentation.
The modern facilities include thermocycler for PCR (polymerase chain reaction), BioTek micro-plate reader (absorbance, fluorescence, & luminescence), micro and large capacity centrifuges, electrophoresis apparatus for proteins and DNA, Kodak digital gel imaging system, Cary UV-visible spectrophotometer, PTI spectrofluorimeter, Agilent HPLC, Bio-Rad Gene Pulser, and integrated chromatography systems for protein purification.
This Physical Science degree fully prepares students for careers in fields such as agriculture, basic research, pharmaceuticals, food production and technology, biotechnology, medical school, and education.
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