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120.624.01 Genome Integrity and Cancer

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

Graduate level molecular biology, and biochemistry or the equivalent.


Examines molecular mechanisms devoted to the preservation of genome integrity in eukaryotic cells. Topics include DNA damage recognition, DNA repair pathways, cell cycle checkpoint mechanisms, the role of p53 in DNA damage responses, the role of ubiquitination and sumoylation in DNA repair, telomere maintenance and DNA repair proteins as targets for therapeutic intervention. Emphasizes the relevance of these mechanisms to human cancer.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Understand how exposure to various environmental agents and anti-cancer drugs can lead to modifications of DNA
  2. Understand the mechanisms by which DNA repair proteins and enzymes maintain the integrity of the genome
  3. Understand how DNA protection and repair systems function in the context of the cell
  4. Understand the connections between DNA damage/DNA repair capacity and human disease, particularly cancer
  5. This is a Masters/PhD course designed to give the student mastery of the molecular mechanisms that maintain the integrity of DNA structure and information content. The course is taught through lectures, each of which focuses on a particular topic regarding repair of DNA damage. Students will learn about chemical reactions that result in DNA damage, enzyme mechanisms and protein structures of DNA damage repair systems, and how DNA protection and repair systems function in the context of the cell. The course will emphasize connections between DNA damage and human disease, particularly cancer.
Methods of Assessment:

Two in-class exams.

Enrollment Restriction:

Undergraduates prohibited from enrolling in this course.

Instructor Consent:

Consent required for all students

Consent Note:

Consent required.

For consent, contact: