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Nucleic Acid Chemistry

East Baltimore
3rd term
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
3 credits
Academic Year:
2019 - 2020
Class Times:
  • M W,  3:30 - 4:50pm
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor s:
Floyd Bryant

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:

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

  1. Design schemes to synthesize nucleosides, oligonucleotides and oligonucleotide conjugates
  2. Predict the products of reactions between nucleic acids and various chemical agents, ionizing and ultraviolet radiation
  3. Describe the design and function of antisense and antigene oligonucleotides, siRNAs, and nucleic acid aptamers
  4. Describe how ribozymes and DNAzymes catalyze chemical reactions
  5. Describe the design, synthesis and function of nucleic acid nanostructures and machines
Methods of Assessment:

Mid-term exam (50%)
Final exam (50%)

Instructor Consent:

Consent required for some students

Consent Note:

Consent required for non-JHSPH students

For consent, contact: