Spring 2000

Instructor: Gary Kunkel
406A Biochemistry
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Time, location: Thurs. 2:20-3:20, Room 203 Biochemistry
Prerequisites: BICH 441 or 411; plus BICH/GENE 431, or concurrent enrollment, or approval of instructor

In this course, we will focus on the general topic of transcription of eukaryotic genes, the first step in the gene expression. During each class session, we will discuss assigned journal articles, ranging from "classic" papers to ones "hot off the press." One student will be the primary discussant for a paper to be presented during each meeting. As a primary discussant, you will be expected to provide historical background leading up to the assigned paper and to select a subset of the data from each paper for your presentation. The primary discussant will be required to meet with me prior to the presentation in order to discuss the paper.

It is very important that all class members take part in the discussion, even when you are not the primary discussant. You will need to be prepared to discuss the papers critically. This is one important objective of this course. If you think the data are good or bad, say so, and why. What controls did the authors present carefully or leave out? How does the data support various models presented in that paper or other papers that you have read? At the beginning of each class period, every student will be required to submit two carefully designed questions pertaining to the paper assigned for that class meeting.

Grading will be allocated as follows:
performance as primary discussant: 50%
participation in other discussions: 25%
submission of questions relating to assigned paper: 25%