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Nucleic Acid Chemistry

East Baltimore
3rd term
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
3 credits
Academic Year:
2013 - 2014
Class Times:
  • M W,  3:30 - 4:50pm
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor s:
Paul Miller

Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry and/or Molecular Biology


Discusses nucleic acid structure, and also describes techniques for manipulating and analyzing nucleic acids, including gel electrophoresis, PCR, and DNA sequencing. Reviews methods used to synthesize nucleosides, nucleotides and oligonucleotides, and chemical reactions that lead to modifications of nucleic acids. Additional topics include: nucleic acid molecular beacons and molecular wires; antisense and antigene oligonucleotides; nucleic acid nanostructures and "machines", and nucleic acid aptamers.

Learning Objectives:

This course will prepare you to be able to do the following:

  1. Design schemes to synthesize nucleosides and oligonucleotides
  2. Predict the products of reactions between nucleic acids and various chemical agents, ionizing and ultraviolet radiation
  3. Understand the design and function of antisense, antigene and siRNAs
  4. Understand the design and synthesis of nucleic acid nanostructures and machines
  5. Understand how nucleic acid aptamers are applied to biological problems
Methods of Assessment:

Final exam at end of term.

Enrollment Restriction:

Undergraduate students are prohibited from registering for this course.

Instructor Consent:

Consent required for all students

Consent Note:

Student should contact instructor for consent to take course.

For consent, contact: