Course Descriptions

Course Catalog for BIOLOGY
BIOL 104
Frontiers in Medicine
The field of medicine has grown tremendously in recent years. Stem cells, the face transplant and nanotechnology are no longer topics of science fiction. Although these novel technologies have profound implications for human health, they are not without their drawbacks. These technologies are extremely expensive and challenge both our ethical and religious beliefs. This course is geared towards non-science majors. The purpose is to provide students with a basic understanding of the science behind these technologies. In doing so, students will be better prepared to understand the legal and ethical debate that will certainly arise in the years to come.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 105
Microbes and Society
A lecture course to examine the structure and function of microorganisms as well as a survey of the variety of microorganisms that shape our world. Topics include disease-producing microbes, microbes necessary for food production, microbial ecology, microorganisms that are useful for research, and an introduction to the usefulness of biotechnology to our society. Not creditable to the bachelor of science degree in biology.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 107
Plants and People
This course is an introduction to plant biology, with a special emphasis on how plants are used by people around the world. We will examine how plants are constructed, how they grow, how they respond to the environment, and how they have adapted to a variety of habitats. As we cover the fundamentals of botany, we will see the biological reasons why plants are good for making paper, medicine, cloth, dyes, construction materials and food. Not creditable to the biology major.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 111
Winter Ecology
Winters in Connecticut are cold and snowy, yet life persists in this stark environment. Through this ecology course we will explore a variety of amazing strategies by which animals and plants meet winter's challenges. In addition to lectures and discussions, during our regular class time on certain weeks we will have required field labs providing firsthand experience with winter ecology. The only prerequisites are a sense of curiosity for the natural world, warm winter clothing, and the ability to understand basic quantitative material. Not creditable to the biology major.
1.00 units, Seminar
BIOL 116
Biogeography
All species have been distributed to certain environments on Earth, some survived, others did not. This course will study the historical and recent dispersal mechanisms as well as environmental pressures that allow for plants and animal distribution patterns. Evolutionary mechanisms leading to adaptation and recent alien invasions into susceptible environments will be emphasized. Grades will be based upon several exams, short papers, a term paper, and classroom discussions. Not creditable to the biology major.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 118
Human Biology
This course provides an introduction to the study of the human body in health and disease. Through lecture and integrated laboratory, we will consider normal structure and function of select organ systems (including musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, and reproductive systems), and how aging, injury, and disease states affect these systems. The lab includes anatomical dissections, microscopic observations of cells and tissues, and other exercises designed to illustrate basic principles of human anatomy and physiology. Not creditable to the biology major.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 119
Nutrition: Food and Fads
This course will explore many aspects of nutrition including the science of food, popular diet plans and cultural views of nutrition. We will use scientific texts and primary literature to explore the science of food, nutritional supplements, food intolerance and allergy and the effect of diet on health. Students will work in small groups to explore the strengths and weaknesses of fad diets. As an ongoing project throughout the course, students will design a diet plan based on their own needs, philosophy, preferences, health history and family and cultural history and will follow their plan and reflect on the experience. We will also incorporate cooking class-selected recipes and dining experiences in relation to nutrition. All levels of college science background are welcome. Not creditable to the biology major.
0.50 units, Lecture
BIOL 120
Genes, Clones, and Biotechnology
This course will focus on the fundamental concepts of genetics and human reproduction upon which current biotechnologies are based. Topics will include patterns of heredity, the molecular biology of gene structure and function, the manipulation and analysis of DNA, genes and disease, mutation, reproduction and embryonic development. The application of this knowledge as it is used in genetic screening, gene therapy, forensic medicine, embryo cloning, the production of transgenic organisms, and other biotechnologies will be discussed. In addition, the social, legal, and ethical ramifications of these technologies will be considered. Not creditable to the biology major.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 122
Toxicology
Toxicology is often described as the study of poisons This course will outline the principles of toxicology (absorption, distribution, biotransformation and excretion) , focusing on toxicity to humans. We will examine common substances that could, at some dose, be toxic, exploring dose-response relationships, susceptible populations, risk assessment and the precautionary principle. The biological effect of common toxins such as lead, gasoline, household cleaners, and particulate air pollution, but also compounds such as alcohol, pain relievers, caffeine, over-the-counter medications and drugs of abuse will be discussed. Case studies will be used to illustrate concepts. Not creditable to the Biology major.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 131
Urban Wildlife Ecology
Conservation of wildlife and natural habitats in urban, suburban, and developing areas. We will study the occurrence, adaptations, and values of wildlife in urbanized areas, with emphasis on research and agency programs. The theory and practice of applying ecological principles to the management of wildlife and wildlife habitats in metropolitan areas will be examined. Not creditable to the biology major. Enrollment limited.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 140
Biological Systems - Lab
This course explores the biology of animals (including humans) from standpoints of anatomy, physiology, and evolution. We shall consider basics of cell biology, genetics, development, and structure and function of the major organ systems (e.g., digestive, respiratory, excretory, nervous, endocrine, and reproductive systems). Evolutionary processes that have yielded animal diversity will also be explored. Laboratory activities include anatomical dissection, as well as explorations of microscopy, physiology, behavior, population genetics, and molecular biology. Not creditable to the biology major. This course fulfills the biology course requirement for students majoring in psychology and engineering.
For this optional laboratory class the student must also enroll in the lecture section.
0.25 units, Laboratory
BIOL 140
Biological Systems
This course explores the biology of animals (including humans) from standpoints of anatomy, physiology, and evolution. We shall consider basics of cell biology, genetics, development, and structure and function of the major organ systems (e.g., digestive, respiratory, excretory, nervous, endocrine, and reproductive systems). Evolutionary processes that have yielded animal diversity will also be explored. Laboratory activities include anatomical dissection, as well as explorations of microscopy, physiology, behavior, population genetics, and molecular biology. Not creditable to the biology major. This course fulfills the biology course requirement for students majoring in psychology and engineering.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 141
Global Perspectives on Biodiversity and Conservation
This lecture and discussion course focuses on the current biodiversity crisis. We will discuss biological diversity and where it is found and how it is monitored, direct and indirect values of biodiversity, and consequences of biodiversity loss. Topics of discussion will also include the problems of small populations, the politics of endangered species, species invasions and extinctions, and the role of humans in these processes, design and establishment of reserves, captive breeding, and the role that the public and governments play in conserving biological diversity. Not creditable to the biology major.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 152
Organisms and Populations
An introduction to the biology of plants and animals including diversity, structural and physiological adaptations, and patterns of inheritance, and the expression of these attributes in population growth, species interactions, community organization, and ecosystem function will also be considered. The laboratory provides the opportunity to explore biological concepts through observation, experimental design, and analysis using classical and modern techniques and instrumentation.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 153
Cells, Metabolism, and Heredity
An introduction to the study of the organization and function of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. Topics to be covered include organelle and membrane structure, biomolecules, metabolism, bioenergetics, and the molecular basis of inheritance. The laboratory offers the opportunity to explore biological concepts through observation, experimentation, and data collection and analysis, using both classical and modern techniques and instrumentation.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 175
Genome Analysis
Students learn the methods of genome analysis using the phage genome sequenced in the course, FYSM 170, Phage Hunt. Students learn how to use bioinformatics software tools and gene databases to identify genes and regulatory sequences and compare them to known viral genomes. Evolutionary relationships between the new and already know viruses may be determined by comparing amino acid sequences of encoded proteins. New genes can be entered into the public gene databases. Students write up and present their scientific results.
Prerequisite: C- or better in First-Year Seminar 170, Phage Hunters, and concurrent enrollment in Biology 183L.
1.00 units, Seminar
BIOL 181
Biology I: Inquiry into Life
Designed for first-year students with a serious interest in the life sciences, this course will introduce important topics spanning the grand spectrum of biology, from ecology and evolution down to cells and biomolecules. We will emphasize subjects that are especially significant for the world today, including, where appropriate, research origins and current investigative processes. Students will gain essential experience in biological analysis, critical thinking, and evidence-based discovery. The course is recommended for first-year students planning to major in biology or another life science. Other students require permission of the instructor to enroll.
Only first-year students are eligible to enroll in this class.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 182
Evolution of Life
This course will provide an introduction to life on Earth from an evolutionary perspective. Through lecture and discussion, we will examine evolutionary principles, inheritance, biodiversity, physiological adaptations, and ecology. The laboratory will provide the opportunity to explore biological concepts through observation, experimental design, and analysis.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 183
Cellular Basis of Life
In this introductory level course, we will examine cells as the fundamental unit of life, discussing features common to all cells, and exploring specializations that confer unique properties to different cell types. The laboratory will provide the opportunity to explore biological concepts through observation, experimental design, and analysis.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Chemistry 111 or Permission of Instructor
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 203
Cellular Basis of Life
In this third course of the introductory biology sequence, we will examine cells as the fundamental unit of life, discussing features common to all cells, and exploring specializations that confer unique properties to different cell types. The laboratory will provide the opportunity to explore biological concepts through observation, experimental design, and analysis.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Chemistry 111L or permission of instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 204
Plant Diversity
Although the earliest plants were simple cells limited to an aquatic environment, today’s plants are found in many habitats, including deserts and high altitudes. To survive in these environments, plants have evolved a remarkable variety of body forms and specialized structures. This course will survey the plant kingdom, focusing on adaptations that permitted plants to advance into new habitats. We will examine selected examples from the major groups, combining lectures, demonstrations, and observations.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 206
Histophysiology
This course provides a comprehensive survey of the structure, composition, and function of tissues and their cellular and non-cellular components. Particular emphasis is placed on structural organization and structural-functional relationships of mammal tissues, with comparisons to other vertebrates. Recent microscopic research conducted at Trinity will also be considered. In the laboratory, students learn fundamentals of cell and tissue morphology through light microscopy and examination of electron micrographs. A background in general or organic chemistry is useful.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 211
Electron Microscopy
Electron microscopes are sophisticated research instruments that allow examination of specimens at very high magnification (up to 250,000x). Thus, they provide valuable information about cell structure and function and serve as diagnostic tools in human medicine. In this course, students learn how to prepare specimens for electron microscopic study, to use EMs to examine and digitally photograph them, and to interpret the resultant images. The theory behind these techniques will be considered, as will application of electron microscopy to research questions and clinical issues.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182 or Biology 183 and consent of instructor
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 215
Botany
An introductory study of the structure, function, development, metabolism, reproduction, dispersal, ecology, and evolution of plants. Plant/animal interactions and co-evolution will be considered. Laboratory exercises and field work are designed to involve students with important concepts discussed in lecture.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L, or permission of instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 222
Invertebrate Zoology
An introductory study of the variety, morphology, functional attributes, development, ecology, and evolution of the major groups of invertebrate animals. The laboratory includes demonstrations, dissections, and experimental observation that relate adaptations in structural patterns and physiological processes of organisms to their marine, freshwater, or terrestrial environments.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L or permission of instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 224
Genetics Laboratory
A study of the basic principles of genetics including the transmission and organization of the genetic material in prokaryotes and eukaryotes, the molecular biology of nucleic acids and information transfer, mutation and mutagenesis, and gene regulation. Laboratory will include techniques of genetic analysis in plants, fungi, and Drosophila. Selected experiments in cytogenetics, molecular genetics, and the genetics of bacteria and bacteria phage.
Prerequisite: C- or better in BIOL 224-01, or concurrent enrollment.
0.25 units, Laboratory
BIOL 224
Genetics
A study of the basic principles of genetics including the transmission and organization of the genetic material in prokaryotes and eukaryotes, the molecular biology of nucleic acids and information transfer, mutation and mutagenesis, and gene regulation. Laboratory will include techniques of genetic analysis in plants, fungi, and Drosophila. Selected experiments in cytogenetics, molecular genetics, and the genetics of bacteria and bacteria phage. This course may be taken without laboratory by registering for only Biology 224-01.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 226
Recombinant DNA Technology
Human gene therapy, genetically-engineered crop plants, and transgenic mice are all possible because of the powerful techniques developed to manipulate nucleic acids and proteins. This course will introduce you to the fundamental methods at the heart of this technology—DNA isolation, restriction digestion, DNA recombination, Southern blotting, and DNA library screening. The emphasis will be on the laboratory experience, with lectures covering current examples of research using the techniques described.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 227
Cell Biology
A study of cell structure and function, emphasizing molecular components, metabolism, organelles, motility, and growth and division. The molecular biology of cells and the regulation of cellular processes are emphasized. Laboratory exercises will include light microscopy, molecular cellular experiments, and other experiments in cell biology.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 233
Conservation Biology
This lecture and discussion course focuses on the science and theory of this interdisciplinary field. Biological concepts examined include biodiversity and the definition of species, patterns of species vulnerability, population dynamics of small populations, extinctions and invasions, rarity, metapopulations, conservation genetics, reserve design, captive breeding, endangered species, habitat fragmentation, and population recovery programs. Interactions between biology, human concerns regarding resource management, and the political process will also be considered.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L, or permission of instructor.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 244
Biology of Infectious Disease
The infectious disease process is multifactorial. In order to understand how bacteria and viruses cause disease, it is necessary to examine the delicate relationship that exists between the host and the infectious organism. This course will focus on understanding the human immune system in health and in disease, as well as the mechanisms employed by microorganisms to escape the immune response. A stepwise approach to the infectious process will be taken in this lecture- and discussion-based course, beginning with initial encounter between the host and the infectious agent and ending with the transmission of the agent to a new host. Although human disease will be the main focus, some infectious agents of plants and other animals will also be discussed.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 250
Genomics Research Program Seminar
This course serves to transition students from their focused first year experience to the broader field of biological research, both at Trinity and beyond. Students will read primary research literature from the full range of the life sciences - from molecules to ecosystems - and discuss common themes and problems in biological research. Students will also interact with all faculty and upper-level students conducting biological research at Trinity and will attend presentations of guest-lecturers from other colleges and universities.
Prerequisite: C- or better in FYSM 170 (Phage Hunters), and Biology 175.
0.50 units, Seminar
BIOL 300
Evolutionary Thought
During the past two centuries, ideas about evolution have provided powerful explanations for the history and diversity of life. This discussion course explores the history of evolutionary ideas in their political and social contexts. Drawing upon primary sources, we will consider contributions from Darwin, Lamarck, and other 19th-century scientists, as well as such 20th-century biologists as Mayr, Gould, and Dawkins. Among the issues to be considered are naturalistic explanations for apparent "design" in the world, controversial application of "Darwinian" ideas in sociopolitical realms, and the relationship of secular approaches and values to the growth of biological thought.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.00 units, Seminar
BIOL 308
Microbiology
A study of microorganisms that include bacteria, viruses, and eukaryotic microbes. Structure, genetics, metabolism, growth and division, and prokaryotic experimental systems are examined. In addition, mechanisms of microbial pathogenesis, and human and viral pathogens are explored. Laboratory exercises will consist of sterile techniques, culture, microscopy, and identification of bacterial specimens. Other exercises will involve experiments in genetic exchange.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 310
Developmental Biology
A study of the developmental processes in animals with emphasis on vertebrates. Modern theories of development are emphasized. Laboratory exercise will include studies of the developmental anatomy of several animals with emphasis on the early embryology of the chick. In addition, experiments dealing with several aspects of animal morphogenesis will be pursued and selected techniques used in experimental studies of animal development will be introduced.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L or Biology 183L, or permission of instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 315
Vertebrate Zoology
A broad-based survey of the biological diversity and evolution of the vertebrates. Special emphasis will be placed on functional morphology, physiology, paleontology, and ecology, as related to evolutionary history. The laboratory will introduce the student to the fundamentals of vertebrate anatomy through the dissection of such animals as the dogfish shark, the cat, and the lamprey. Other lab exercises will deal with functional analysis and reconstruction of phylogenetic relationships.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182 and 183.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 317
Biochemistry
A study of the molecular reactions that sustain life. Topics include biomolecule structure and function, enzyme kinetics, bioenergetics, and integration and regulation of metabolic pathways. The laboratory exercises include chromatography, electrophoresis, spectroscopy and bioinformatic analysis.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Chemistry 212L, Biology 182L and Biology 183L.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 319
Animal Physiology
This course examines the physiological mechanisms underlying four fundamental functions—movement, sensation, feeding, and reproduction. How do physiological systems operate to enable organisms to live in drastically different habitats? What are the common cellular and molecular mechanisms shared by diverse animals? The laboratory will consist of several preparations examining developmental, sensory, endocrine, and muscle physiology, followed by more detailed, independent investigations of one of these preparations.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 323
Plant Metabolism and Behavior
This course is a study of how plants function. Like animals, plants must have food and water, protect themselves from predators, and accommodate changes in their environment. However, plants have evolved very different solutions to these common problems. We will examine the mechanism of plant movements, how plants detect changes in the world around them, how they transport water great distances without a pump, and how they feed themselves. Special topics include the physiology of parasitic plants, the mechanisms by which plants withstand freezing and drought, and how plants combat insects and disease.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 326
Recombinant DNA Technology
Human gene therapy, genetically-engineered crop plants and transgenic mice are all possible because of the powerful techniques developed to manipulate nucleic acids and proteins. This course will introduce you to the fundamental methods at the heart of this technology: DNA isolation, restriction digestion, DNA recombination, Southern blotting and DNA library screening. The emphasis will be on the laboratory experience, with lectures covering current examples of research using the techniques described.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 333
Ecology
A study of the adaptations of organisms to their environment and of the interrelationships among organisms that determine the structure and attributes of natural populations and biological communities. Field trips and laboratory exercises use sampling methods and statistical techniques to analyze the response of organisms to their physical environment, selected population phenomena, and different natural communities. Several field trips are required during the term. It is recommended that students take Biology 215L and 222L before enrolling, but they are not prerequisites.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L, or permission of instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 336
Marine and Freshwater Botany
A study of the life histories and environmental strategies of aquatic algae, bryophytes, and vascular plants. The course will highlight the physiological problems and anatomical adaptations associated with life in various fluid environments. Fieldwork in a peat bog, Long Island Sound, and fresh-water environments supplements self-designed research projects on reproductive morphology, growth studies, and physiology of selected aquatic plants.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L. Biology 215L is recommended.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 352
General Endocrinology
A study of the endocrine glands of vertebrates. Major emphasis concerns the interaction of hormones and nervous system in regulating metabolism, reproduction, development and differentiation. The laboratory will introduce students to modern techniques used in studying endocrine physiology. Included will be experiments involving measurement of neurotransmitter and hormone receptors, metabolism of hormones, and preparation of antibodies to hormones.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 399
Independent Study
Independent research supervised by a faculty member in an area of the student’s special interests. Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment.
0.50 units min / 1.00 units max, Independent Study
BIOL 403
Research Seminar
Students engaged in laboratory or field research, as well as honors candidates conducting library research, will meet with the biology faculty for oral presentations and critical discussions of journal papers, research plans, and research progress. Concurrent enrollment in either Biology 419 or 425 is required.
This course is open to seniors only.
0.50 units, Seminar
BIOL 404
Research Seminar
Students engaged in laboratory research, as well as honor candidates conducting library research, will meet with the biology faculty for oral presentations and critical discussions of journal papers, research plans, and research progress. Concurrent enrollment in either Biology 419 or 425 is required.
This course is open only to senior Biology majors
0.50 units, Seminar
BIOL 419
Research in Biology (Library)
Students will conduct library research projects under the direction of an individual faculty member. Students electing this type of independent study should plan on a full semester culminating with the completion of a final formal paper. Seniors and those using library research to satisfy the Group IV requirement must simultaneously enroll in the Research Seminar (Biology 404). Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment.
0.50 units, Independent Study
BIOL 419
Research in Biology (Library)
Students will conduct library research projects under the direction of an individual faculty member. Students electing this type of independent study should plan on a full semester culminating with the completion of a final formal paper. Seniors and those using library research to satisfy the Group IV requirement must simultaneously enroll in the Research Seminar (Biology 403). Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment.
0.50 units, Independent Study
BIOL 425
Research in Biology (Laboratory)
Students will conduct original laboratory research projects under the direction of an individual faculty member. Students electing to pursue independent study of this type should plan on initiating work no later than the fall of the senior year, and should also plan on no less than two semesters of study with a final formal report to be submitted to the department, as well as a poster at the annual Science Symposium. Seniors and those using laboratory research to satisfy the Group IV requirement must simultaneously enroll in the Research Seminar (Biology 403). Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment.
0.50 units, Independent Study
BIOL 430
Avian Ecology and Conservation
This seminar/discussion course will focus on issues related to the ecology and conservation of birds. We will examine current areas of research at several levels, including genetic, species, population, community, and landscape. Class discussions will focus on readings from the current ornithological literature, and class will be organized around student presentations of this material. A research project is required.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L, or permission of instructor.
1.00 units, Seminar
BIOL 435
Life History Strategies
This seminar and discussion course examines the evolution and consequences of life history strategies for a variety of organisms and at several levels (gene, individual, population). We will discuss adaptations and constraints of various strategies and attempt to integrate current life history theory into the framework of conservation biology. Topics of discussion include evolution of sex, sex ratios, predator-prey relationships, reproductive effort/costs, reproductive schedules, sex reversal, lifespan and senescence, and complex life cycles. Class will be organized around student discussion and presentation of readings from the current literature. Permission of instructor required.
1.00 units, Seminar
BIOL 440
Drug Discovery
This lecture/laboratory course introduces students to principles of pharmacology, and explores diverse approaches used to identify new targets for drug action, screening strategies for biological activity and toxicity, and methodologies for studying drug clearance. Students also learn about modern laboratory analysis of traditional medicines, natural compounds with potent biological activity, genetic polymorphisms in drug response and clearance, and the placebo effect.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 227, 308 or 317 or permission of instructor.
1.25 units, Laboratory
BIOL 446
Bacterial Pathogenesis
This seminar will examine the intricate relationship between a bacterial pathogen and a mammalian host. Bacteria have evolved a wide array of virulence factors that allow them to circumvent host defense mechanisms and cause disease. Many of these virulence factors have been identified and studied at the molecular level. Additionally, a study of the host immune system is essential for an understanding of the ability of microorganisms to cause disease. The molecular biology of bacterial virulence as well as the host response to pathogens will be examined through readings and discussions of the primary literature.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 183L and one of the following: Biology 227L, or Biology 308L, or Biology 317L, or permission of instructor
1.00 units, Seminar
BIOL 456
Biology of Communication
This integrative course will examine the development, neurobiology, physiology, ecology, and evolution of communication in vertebrate animals, including humans. We will discuss how communication signals (e.g., bird songs, human speech, olfactory communication chemicals) are generated by animals, how these signals travel through the environment and are perceived by other animals, and how, in turn, they modify the behavior of the receiving animal. Human disorders such as deafness will be examined as a means of understanding plasticity in communication systems. Emphasis will be on reading and discussing articles from the primary literature. The laboratory section will include both lab and field experiments in which we record and analyze signals, examine hormonal effects on communication behaviors, and observe behavioral responses to playbacks of communication signals. This course includes a community learning component.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 319L or Neuroscience 201.
1.25 units, Lecture
BIOL 463
Ecological Concepts and Methods
This advanced course utilizes lectures and student-led seminars to explore a variety of ecological topics, ranging from the level of the individual organism to the biosphere. Readings are drawn predominantly from the primary literature. Laboratories, mostly field-based, introduce methodology and emphasize the design of observational and experimental studies. There will likely be one or two mandatory weekend-long lab sessions at a field station. With special permission, the course may be taken without the prerequisite.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 333L or Biology 222L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 464
Molecular Genetics
An examination of the current molecular explanations of the structure, maintenance, control, and expression of genes in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms. Biology 227L is recommended.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 224
1.00 units, Lecture
BIOL 466
Teaching Assistantship
Students who have been invited to serve as teaching assistants will register for this course. Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar's Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment. See paragraph on teaching assistants in the description of the major. Not creditable to the major.
0.50 units, Independent Study
BIOL 468
Marine Phytogeography
An advanced-level seminar on the historical and recent biological, physical, and artificial factors controlling the distribution of marine organisms, particularly seaweeds. Class discussions focus on primary phytogeographical literature. An investigative search and term paper on the known distribution of a marine alga is required.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 336L or permission of instructor.
1.00 units, Seminar
BIOL 473
Sensory Biology
This integrative course examines the cell biology, development, physiology and ecology of the senses (vision, audition, olfaction, taste and touch). We will discuss the complex ways humans gather, filter and process sensory information; and how animals sense the world quite differently.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182, and Biology 183L, and Biology 319L or Neuroscience 201, or permission of instructor.
1.00 units min / 1.25 units max, Lecture
BIOL 475
Symbiosis
The word “symbiosis” was coined to describe an arrangement in which organisms of different species live closely together. The relationship may be of mutual benefit (mutualism), may be of benefit to one member while harmful to the other (parasitism), or may be beneficial to one and of neutral effect on the other (commensalism). Examples of the incredible variety of relationships include the commensalism between remoras and sharks, the parasitism of mistletoes on trees, and the mutualism of ants and acacia plants. Some of the most important events in the history of life—the origin of eukaryotic cells, for example—are the result of ancient symbiotic interactions. We will examine the natural history, physiology, and evolution of these remarkable associations.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Biology 182L and Biology 183L, or Permission of Instructor.
1.00 units, Seminar
BIOL 490
Research Assistantship
No Course Description Available.
0.50 units, Independent Study
BIOL 497
Honors Thesis
An extended paper on the subject of the student’s two-semester research project with a professor in biology, to be read by three or more members of the department. This course is open only to those biology majors who wish to qualify for honors (see paragraph on Honors in Biology in the description of the major). Simultaneous enrollment in Biology 419 or 425 and 404, submission of the special registration form available in the Registrar’s Office, and approval of the instructor and chair are required for enrollment.
Prerequisite: Concurrent enrollment in Biology 419 or Biology 425 and Biology 404.
0.50 units, Independent Study
BIOL 498
Senior Thesis Part 1
No Course Description Available.
2.00 units, Independent Study
BIOL 499
Senior Thesis Part 2
No Course Description Available.
2.00 units, Independent Study