The Catholic University of America

Course Descriptions

Biology (BIOL)

To view the complete schedule of courses for
each semester, go to Cardinal Station.

BIOL 101: A Literary Approach to Biology

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 102: Teaching Science at the Elementary Level

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 103: General Biology I

3.00 Credits

An examination of the human body in health and disease. After examining the normal physiology of the body, the processes and symptoms of a variety of diseases will be discussed. Emphasis will be placed on the factors responsible for these diseases and their prevention. For non-concentrators only. Note: Biology 103 and 104 may be taken in any order.

BIOL 104: General Biology II

3.00 Credits

An introduction to environmental science and ecology with emphasis on the interrelationships of living and nonliving things in ecosystems and how disruptions of these relationships result in environmental problems. A portion of the course will be held outdoors. For non-concentrators only. Note: Biol 103 and 104 may be taken in any order.

BIOL 105: Mechanisms of Life I

4.00 Credits

Lecture and laboratory course addressed to general principles in modern biology. Emphasizes molecular and cell biology, evolution, and basic biological and chemical principles. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory per week. For concentrators and premedical students only.

BIOL 106: Mechanisms of Life II

4.00 Credits

Lecture and laboratory course addressed to general principles and an introduction to animal and plant biology. 106 emphasizes cancer biology, biotechnology, cell signaling, immunology, and molecular genetics. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory per week. For concentrators and premedical students only. Prerequisites is BIOL 105.

BIOL 109: Medicine and Society

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 114: Field Biology for Non-Science Majors

3.00 Credits

A hands-on course in field biology for non-science majors. Students will learn basic concepts about ecology and environmental science through outdoor activities and exploration of a variety of ecosystems. Field trips will be taken to local national parks, rivers, and the Chesapeake Bay to study forest ecology, stream ecology, and the interrelationships of all the living and nonliving components of these ecosystems. The large majority of the course will be spent outside on field trips.

BIOL 217: Molecular Genetics & Protein Engineering

3.00 Credits

This laboratory course takes the students through a connected series of modern and advanced molecular biology concepts such as sequence and structural analysis of a model gene, introduction of a specific mutation in a key functional motif, and biochemical assays to determine how the mutation affects biological function. The drug resistance ABC transporter gene, pdr5, from Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a gene that has significant biomedical importance, will be used as the model gene. The course builds on concepts learned in Biol. 106 laboratory by incorporating several new approaches such as computational analysis, protein engineering, site-directed mutagenesis, and enzyme biochemistry. A major goal of this course is to provide the students with skills that are inherent in professional success, which include analytical skills, quantitative and statistical analyses, written and oral communication of basic concepts. FOR BIOLOGY and MED TECH MAJORS ONLY.

BIOL 218: Molecular Cell Biology Lab

1.00 Credits

This laboratory course reinforces concepts introduced in BIOL 210. Tools and techniques of cell biology will be used to study mitochondria, the cytoskeleton, intracellular transport, and cell division. Emphasis will be placed on improving scientific writing skills. Three hours of laboratory per week. Prerequisites: BIOL 105 and BIOL 106.

BIOL 223: Microbiology

3.00 Credits

An introduction to the study of microorganisms with emphasis on disease-causing bacteria. Topics include the nature of microorganisms, their relationships with humans, infectious diseases, and immunity.

BIOL 232: Human Anatomy & Physiology I

4.00 Credits

UPDATED COURSE DESCRIPTION FOR BIOL-232 BIOL-232 is the first semester of a two-semester course in Human Anatomy and Physiology. Coverage includes homeostasis, the chemical foundations of life, anatomy and physiology of the cell, the integumentary system, skeletal system, muscular system, and nervous system. Presentations of clinical applications have particular relevance to students preparing for the health care professions. A total of 35 hours of lecture and 35 hours of lab occurs during the term of the semester. All instruction during the seven-week summer term (both lecture and lab) will take place online.

BIOL 233: Human Anatomy & Physiology II

4.00 Credits

BIOL-233 is the second semester of a two-semester course in Human Anatomy and Physiology. Systematic coverage continues with a focus on the endocrine, lymphatic, cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, urinary and reproductive systems. Presentations of clinical applications have particular relevance to students preparing for the health care professions. A total of 35 hours of lecture and 35 hours of lab occurs during the term of the semester. All instruction during the seven-week summer term (both lecture and lab) will take place online.

BIOL 317: Investigations in Molecular Cell Biology

4.00 Credits

Biol 317: Investigations in Molecular Cell Biology Course description This laboratory course is designed to teach students to become independent scientists. The material and skills build upon the content of Biol 105,106, and 217 laboratories. The course will be an active learning environment that will include a mixture of lecture material, group work, problem-solving sessions, laboratory exercises, and individual team-based original laboratory projects that focus on molecular and cell biology. Emphasis will be placed on developing scientific writing and oral communication skills. In addition, students will begin learning how to read and interpret scholarly journal articles

BIOL 341: Ecology

3.00 Credits

A study of the abiotic and biotic factors in ecosystems and how they interact. Field trips will examine the unique factors pertinent to specific ecosystems.

BIOL 397: The Development and Application of Modern Genetics

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 418: Physiology

4.00 Credits

Vertebrate/human function with emphasis on the cardiovascular system, and on the cellular functions involved with muscle contraction, nerve impulse propagation, renal function, respiration and digestion. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory each week.

BIOL 449: General Microbiology

4.00 Credits

Introduction to microorganisms and their importance to humanity, with special emphasis on bacteria and viruses. Prerequisite: 207.

BIOL 452: Coordinating Seminar

3.00 Credits

Selected topics of current biological interest. Required of seniors concentrating in biology.

BIOL 454: Biological Chemistry

3.00 Credits

An introduction to biomolecules and their interactions. Topics include the structure and function of amino acids, proteins, carbohydrates, nucleotides, lipids, membranes. Energetics and aspects of human metabolism will be discussed. Prerequisites: CHEM 203, 204.

BIOL 473: Clinical Chemistry I

3.00 Credits

Basic clinical laboratory procedures and theory relating to carbohydrate and protein metabolism, enzyme and isoenzyme function and analysis; nonprotein nitrogen compounds, body water, and electrolytes; acid-base balance and blood gases. Lecture and laboratory.

BIOL 474: Clinical Chemistry II

3.00 Credits

Advanced clinical procedures and theory, including lipid metabolism, liver function, endocrinology, therapeutic drug monitoring, and special procedures; in-depth study of metabolic disorders and problem solving in clinical . Lecture only.

BIOL 475: Hematology I

4.00 Credits

Basic clinical laboratory procedures and theory, including cell maturation; hemoglobin metabolism; methods including hemoglobins, hematocrits, sedimentation rates, cell counting, and prothrombin times. Lecture and laboratory.

BIOL 476: Hematology II

3.00 Credits

Advanced hemotologic procedures and theory, including in-depth study of anemia, leukemia, hemoglobinopathies, coagulation disorders, quality control systems, and problem solving in hematology. Lecture only.

BIOL 477: Immunohematology I

4.00 Credits

Basic clinical laboratory procedures and theory, including the ABO, Rh and other blood group systems, compatibility testing, donor screening, and preparation and storage of components. Lecture and laboratory.

BIOL 478: Immunohematology II

3.00 Credits

Advanced blood banking theory and procedure, including antibody problems, clinical use of components, blood needs in emergency situations, post-transfusion problems, histocompatibility and quality control systems, problem solving in blood bank. Also includes principles of immunology and immunoserology with emphasis on the immune response, and immunoserologic techniques. Lecture and laboratory.

BIOL 479: Clinical Microbiology I

4.00 Credits

Basic clinical laboratory procedures and theory, including quality control, specimen collection and processing, normal and abnormal flora, and identification and clinical significance of common bacterial pathogens in the clinical microbiology laboratory. Lecture and laboratory.

BIOL 480: Clinical Microbiology II

3.00 Credits

Examination of the identification and clinical significance of less common bacterial pathogens and introduction to antimicrobial susceptibility testing. Also includes mycology, parasitology and virology. Lecture and laboratory.

BIOL 484: Lab Management & Education

1.00 Credits

Principles of supervision and clinical laboratory management, including planning, organizing, directing, coordinating, and controlling. Introduction to learning system design and effective teaching techniques.

BIOL 485: Clinical Chemistry Practicum

3.00 Credits

Practical experience during a rotation in the clinical laboratory, including routine and special laboratory testing to help the student develop speed, accuracy, self-confidence, and an awareness of the environment and responsibilities in an active clinical laboratory.

BIOL 487: Hematology Practicum

2.00 Credits

Practical experience during a rotation in the clinical laboratory, including routine and special laboratory testing to help the student develop speed, accuracy, self-confidence, and an awareness of the environment and responsibilities in an active clinical laboratory.

BIOL 488: Immunohematology Practicum

2.00 Credits

Practical experience during a rotation in the clinical laboratory, including routine and special laboratory testing to help the student develop speed, accuracy, self-confidence, and an awareness of the environment and responsibilities in an active clinical laboratory.

BIOL 489: Clinical Microbiology Practicum

3.00 Credits

Practical experience during a rotation in the clinical laboratory, including routine and special laboratory testing to help the student develop speed, accuracy, self-confidence, and an awareness of the environment and responsibilities in an active clinical laboratory.

BIOL 491: Clinical Lab Instrumentation

3.00 Credits

Basic principles of electronics and instrumentation, including spectrophotometry, emission flame photometry, atomic absorption spectrophotometry, potentiometric techniques, osmometry, fluorometry, electrophoresis and chromatography. Lecture and laboratory.

BIOL 493: Research Problems in Biology

3.00 Credits

Basic research in a field of interest under faculty direction. Open to undergraduates only.

BIOL 497: Urinalysis & Body Fluids

3.00 Credits

Basic clinical laboratory procedures and theory including physical, chemical, and microscopic analysis of urine and other body fluids, renal physiology, and renal disease.

BIOL 498: Undergraduate Comprehensive Examination

0 Credits

no description available

BIOL 499: Biology Education

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 515: Research Ethics

1.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 530: Molecular Techniques

4.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 538: Gene Organ and Expression

3.00 Credits

A study of the functional as well as the structural aspects of prokaryotic and eukaryotic genes. Topics include structure of DNA, RNA, transcription and translation and their regulation, and gene families.

BIOL 540: Mechanisms of Gene Mutation and Gene Transmission

3.00 Credits

Classical and molecular approaches to the study of the mechanisms of recombination, transposition and mutation. Prerequisite 538 or permission of instructor.

BIOL 544: Enzyme Catalysis, Regulation and Drug Targeting

3.00 Credits

Enzyme structure and function from the viewpoint of catalytic mechanisms, kinetic properties, regulatory mechanisms, and applications in the biomedical field. Offered alternate years. Prerequisite:Chem 203, Chem 204. Enzyme Catalysis, Regulation and Drug Targeting This course covers the chemical and biological aspect of catalysis, including fundamentals of reaction mechanisms, structural basis for catalysis, regulation of enzymes in their biological context, impacts of enzyme action and mutation in disease states. The course will emphasize the medical and technological aspects of enzymology, such as targeting of enzymes for the development of new therapeutics

BIOL 549: General Microbiology (Lecture)

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 549A: General Microbiology (Lab)

1.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 550: Molecular Diagnosis of Infectious Disease

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 551: Clinical Laboratory Education

2.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 554: Biological Chemistry

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 555: Rational Drug Design

3.00 Credits

RATIONAL DRUG DESIGN This course is designed to explore the process of structure- and ligand-based drug design, as well as the traditional trial-and-error testing methods. Subject areas include design of enzyme inhibitors and drugs for particular cellular targets such as ion channels and receptors, and also explore specific classes of drug such as peptidomimetics, antiviral and anticancer agents. The use of gene technology in pharmaceutical and biotechnological research, computer modeling techniques and combinatorial approaches are also included. Original research publications will be used as case studies to illustrate the practical application of the rational drug discovery.

BIOL 557: Molecular Biotechnology

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 559: Cell Structure and Function

3.00 Credits

Cellular structure and function, with emphasis on information obtained from electron microscopic, biochemical, immunocytochemical, and molecular methods. Includes demonstration of EM techniques, and discussions of relevant journal articles.

BIOL 563: Developmental Biology

3.00 Credits

Survey of development from fertilization of the egg through cellular determination and differentiation to the cellular interactions which ultimately give rise to the adult organism. Prerequisites: 105 or permission of Instructor.

BIOL 565: Model Organisms and Human Disease

3.00 Credits

Discussion of the molecular and genetic approaches used in various model organisms to reveal causes, phenotypes, and possible treatments associated with human diseases. Topics will be explored through an examination of the primary scientific literature. Prerequisites: 105 or permission of Instructor.

BIOL 566: Immunology

3.00 Credits

Basic principles of immunology including immuglobulin structure and synthesis, theories of antibody formation, lymphocyte interaction, and immune regulation. Prerequisite: 549 or permission of instructor.

BIOL 571: Immunopathology

3.00 Credits

Discussion of involvement of inflammation, phagocytic cells, complement, immunoglobulin, and lymphoid cells in instigation of pathology. Reviews principles of hypersensitivity and unresponsiveness from standpoint of pathology. Theories of mechanisms included from current literature. Clinical examples serve to highlight immune mediated pathologic situations. Summer Sessions only.

BIOL 572: Genomics, Proteomics and Personalized Medicine

3.00 Credits

Genomics, Proteomics, and Personalized Medicine The last decade has brought a surge of new high-throughput biotechnologies, enabling the examination of biological systems at an unprecedented level of detail and setting the stage for the development of personalized medicine. This class will introduce students to cutting edge omics based technologies such as genomics and proteomics and their application in dissecting the complexities within diseases, as well as in improving the precision of disease diagnostics and treatment

BIOL 574: Intro to Virology

3.00 Credits

Deals with the fundamental mechanisms of viral multiplication: strategies used by different viruses in controlling host functions, nucleic acid replication, nucleic acid packaging, protein assembly and capsid morphogenesis. Takes an analytical approach, and appropriate bacterial, animal, or plant viruses will be chosen to address various questions related to the above phenomena. Lecture only. Prerequisite: 549 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.

BIOL 578: Research Problems - Biology II

3.00 Credits

Basic research in a field of interest under faculty direction. Open to undergraduates only.

BIOL 579: Principles and Practice of Biotechnology

3.00 Credits

This course focuses on the application of genetic and molecular technologies to the development of products for medicine, agriculture, the environment, and industrial manufacture

BIOL 580: Entrepreneurial Biotechnology

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 581: Essentials of Biotechnology Project Management

3.00 Credits

Students will learn to position themselves favorably to meet the challenges that are unique to the business of biotechnology. This course provides a combination of project management theoretical methodologies and real-life pragmatic examples (case studies). Topics include: projects planning, execution and control; managing uncertainty in drug development business; projects risk management and managing drug safety risk. The next wave of managing upcoming biotechnological projects will be discussed.

BIOL 583: Regulation of Domestic and Global Biotechnology Products

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 584: Mechanisms of Bacterial Pathogenesis

3.00 Credits

A molecular study of the variety of virulence mechanisms of different bacteria, with emphasis on pathogens that are major public health concerns. Includes genetics of virulence factors and microbial drug-resistance, analysis of host response and evaluation of strategies for drug and vaccine development. Prerequisite: BIOL 549 or permission of the Instructor.

BIOL 586: Molecular Genetics and Recombinant DNA Methodology

3.00 Credits

In-depth discussion of experimental technologies used to investigate gene expression. Particular emphasis on approaches for cloning, identification, and analysis of genes. Offered alternate years. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

BIOL 588: Advanced Immunology

3.00 Credits

Detailed examination of immune response, hypersensitivity reactions, immune complex reactions, and other topics.

BIOL 589: Introduction to Nanobiotechnology

3.00 Credits

The history and basic concepts of nanobiotechnology will be introduced with a special emphasis on potential applications to research, diagnostic and treatment of diseases. The tools and approaches of nanobiotechnology (bottom-up versus top-down) and some nanoparticles of medical interest will be surveyed. Both the applications of nanotechnology to biology and medicine and the use of molecular biology to build machines at the nanoscale will be discussed through review of the current literature. The potential risks of nanotechnology will also be discussed

BIOL 596: Computational Genomics

3.00 Credits

An introduction to bioinformatics. Topics include structure, fraction, and interrelationships of databases, information retrieval, database homology searching, pairwise alignment methods, gene prediction programs and submission of sequence, prediction of secondary and tertiary protein structure using web-based tools. Lecture and lab.

BIOL 597: Fundamentals of Statistics in Biology, Medicine and Biotechnology

3.00 Credits

Biol-597. Fundamentals of Statistics in Biology, Medicine and Biotechnology Mon-Wed. 5.10-6.25. Rm 100, computer lab This course will provide an in-depth and engaging introduction to biostatistics for undergraduate and graduate students and serve as a refresher for students who may be familiar with basic statistics. The major objective is to lead the students through the statistical methods, techniques and computations needed for success in academia, biotechnology and health sciences. Students will learn how to apply statistics to design of laboratory experiments and clinical trials, data analysis and graphical representation as well as how to evaluate and interpret statistical results. The introductory, core-conceptual lectures will be followed by computer-based practice sessions with real examples, actual data analysis and additional 'self-check' exercises. Topics include hypothesis testing, p-values and significance, confidence intervals, continuous variables and statistical tests comparison.

BIOL 598: Membrane Trafficking and Disease

3.00 Credits

This course will explore the mechanisms regulating membrane dynamics in mammalian cells and how defects in these mechanisms contribute to human disease. Topics will be explored through lectures and primary scientific literature. Prerequisite: BIOL 210, 218.

BIOL 599: Signal Transduction and Biomembranes

3.00 Credits

This course will explore the mechanisms regulating signal transduction in mammalian cells. Selected pathways will be highlighted and discussed in detail. Topics will be explored through lectures and primary scientific literature. Prerequisite: BIOL 554 or permission of instructor.

BIOL 692: Research Topics in Biology - Master's

2.00 Credits

Supervised study of selected topics in biology. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

BIOL 693: Research Problems in Biology - Master's

3.00 Credits

Supervised research in selected areas in biology. Can be taken a maximum of two times. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

BIOL 693A: Clinical Research Problems - Master's

4.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 695: Biotechnology Internship

4.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 696: Master's Thesis Research

0 Credits

This course bills at the equivalent of one credit hour.

BIOL 698A: Master's Comprehensive Examination (w/Classes)

0 Credits

no description available

BIOL 698B: Master's Comprehensive Examination (w/o Classes)

0 Credits

Enrollment in this course bills at the equivalent of one credit hour.

BIOL 707: Pharmacology

3.00 Credits

Introductory pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics and a comprehensive survey of major drug classes.

BIOL 713: Microbiology Seminar

1.00 Credits

Topics and techniques of current interest in microbiology; 713 or 714 or 777 or 778 must be taken each semester by all graduate students in the M.S. and Ph.D. programs in Cell and Microbial Biology.

BIOL 713A: Microbiology Seminar

0 Credits

This course bills at the equivalent of one credit hour.

BIOL 721: Case Studies in Clinical Microbiology

2.00 Credits

Lecture and laboratory covering principles and practice of assays of soluble and particulate antigen/antibody reactions, complement assays, ligand immunoassays, immunohistochemical assays, lymphocyte and phagocyte assays, immune complex assays, immediate and delayed hypersensitivity, protein analysis and preparation, and an introduction to flow cytometry.

BIOL 725: Methods-Biological Reseach Lab

1.00 Credits

Laboratory portion of BIOL 727.

BIOL 727: Methods-Biological Research

3.00 Credits

Introduction to the current techniques used in the study of biological systems at a molecular level. Lecture, laboratory, and demonstrations. Required of all incoming graduate students.

BIOL 734: Special Topics in Clinical Laboratory Science

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 735: Special Research Problems in Clinical Laboratory Science

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 744: Red Blood Cell Disorders

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 747: Advanced Hematology

2.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 748: Quality Assurance and Regulations in the Clinical Lab.

1.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 750: Hematopathology

3.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 751: Laboratory Management

3.00 Credits

Discussion of involvement of inflammation, phagocytic cells, complement, immunoglobulin, and lymphoid cells in instigation of pathway. Immunodiagnosis and clinical laboratory correlation of immunoglobulin disorders, autoimmune disorders, cellular immune mediated diseases, and transplantation and tumor immunology.

BIOL 774: Comparative Metabolism

3.00 Credits

A lecture course discussing the metabolic systems found in microorganisms and in higher organisms. The course emphasizes the fundamental concepts involved in the functiong of a living cell as a highly complex biochemical machine consisting of interconnected, dynamic, metabolic pathways. Similarities and differences among selected prokaryotes and eukaryotes are covered in detail. Offered alternate years. Prerequisite: 554 or equivalent.

BIOL 777: Cell Biology Seminar

1.00 Credits

Current methods and research findings in cell biology; 713 or 714 or 777 or 778 must be taken each semester by all graduate students in the M.S. and Ph.D. programs in Cell and Microbial Biology. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

BIOL 777A: Cell Biology Seminar

0 Credits

This course bills at the equivalent of one credit hour.

BIOL 780: Advanced Clinical Microbiology

3.00 Credits

Correlation of clinical, physiologic, immunologic, and pathologic mechanisms determining the cause and morphological changes that occur in infections.

BIOL 781: Clinical Lab Sciences/Biotechnology Seminar

1.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 781A: Clinical Lab Sciences/Biotechnology Seminar

0 Credits

This course bills at the equivalent of one credit hour.

BIOL 790: Current Topics in Clinical Laboratory Science

1.00 Credits

A different subject covered each semester in lecture/seminar format. Subjects include new instrumentation (biosensors, nuclear magnetic resonance analyzers, etc.), computer technology, new therapies and drugs. Students must complete this course each semester.

BIOL 792: Research Topics in Biology - Doctoral

2.00 Credits

Supervised study of selected topics in biology. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

BIOL 793: Research Problems in Biology - Doctoral

3.00 Credits

Supervised research in selected areas in biology. Can be taken a maximum of two times. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

BIOL 793A: Clinical Research Problems - Doctoral

4.00 Credits

no description available

BIOL 996: Doctoral Dissertation Research

0 Credits

Under this heading will be grouped all laboratory work done by individual students in connection with preparation of their dissertation. Time, laboratory space, equipment, and fees determined for each student on registration for the work. This course bills at the equivalent of one credit hour.

BIOL 998A: Doctoral Comprehensive Examination (w/Classes)

0 Credits

no description available

BIOL 998B: Doctoral Comprehensive Examination (w/o Classes)

0 Credits

Enrollment in this course bills at the equivalent of one credit hour.