How do animals and humans take food, air and water and process these into chemicals that fuel their activity and build their tissues. Do this course to discover the answers.

A solid knowledge of biochemical processes is a valuable asset in a wide range of careers, from human health services and biological research, to pharmaceuticals, farming and animal health care.

Learn to explain a range of common biochemical processes with emphasis on animal and human biochemical processes. Prerequisites: Biochemistry I and II eqivilent. knowledge.Together with Biochemistry I & II; this course builds your knowledge to a first year college or university level.


Study the chemical processes that occur within a plant

This course builds on a foundation of knowledge you have developed through Biochemistry I and II, or similar studies elsewhere.

It provides insights which strengthen a fundamental understanding of how plants grow; and in doing so, it has valuable and practical benefits for horticulturists, farmers, plant scientists or anyone else who is involved in growing plants.

Nominal Duration
   100 hours


PREREQUISITE:   Biochemistry II or equivalent


There are eleven lessons in this module as follows:

1.   Introduction - Metabolism, Energy Transfer within the Cell
2.   Glycolysis - ATP Synthase, Glycolysis, Pentose Phosphate Pathway
3.   Movement Through Membranes - Lipids and Fats, Membranes, Kinetics and Mechanisms of Transport, Ionophores, Aquaporins
4.   Electron Transport and Oxidative Phosphorylation - Citric Acid Cycle, ATP Production
5.   Sugar and Polysaccharide Metabolism - Monosaccharides, Sucrose, Starches, Starch Biosynthesis, Carbohydrate Metablism, Gluconeogenesis, Cell Wall
6.   Lipid Metabolism - Lipids, Fatty Acid Biosynthesis, TAG Formation, Fatty Acid Oxidation
7.   Photosynthesis  - Light Reactions, Dark Reactions, Photorespiration, CAM
8.   Nucleotide Metabolism - Nitrogen Fixation, Assimilation of Ammonia into Amino Acids
9.   Enzyme Activity - Enzyme Classification, Kinetics and Regulation
10.  Reproductive Processes in Plants - Sexual and Asexual Reproduction, Gene Expression, RNA and Protein Synthesis, Eukaryotic DNA Replication
11.  Other Processes - Hormones, Growth Regulators, Growth Retardants, Use of Plant Hormones in Horticulture

Course Aims
Explain the process of glycolysis. 
Describe the transport mechanism of bio-chemicals through plant membranes. 
Explain the structure and metabolism of carbohydrates
Explain the metabolism of lipids.
Explain the processes of photosynthesis and the role of the light and dark reactions of photosynthesis in the growth of plants. 
Explain biochemical nucleotide metabolism.
Explain enzyme reactions and catalysis in biochemistry.
Explain metabolic processes relevant to reproduction in plants.
Explain other biochemical processes including biochemical communication through hormones.


What is Metabolism?

Metabolism refers to all the chemical reactions in an organism that sustain its life. There are reactions that give energy and small molecules that are the base of bigger structures, and reactions that take up energy and molecules to build up new structures.

Metabolism within an animal or plant is complex, involving many different chemical reactions; each having an effect upon others. Despite the complexity of living metabolism, organisms maintain relative stability by a set of processes known as homeostasis.

There are two main types of pathways in metabolism:

1. Catabolism: Pathways that result in the degradation of biochemical substances to smaller compounds and molecules, and that give energy away (liberate energy).

2. Anabolism: Pathways that result in the synthesis or building up of more complex compounds from simpler biochemical substances. They consume energy to build up the new materials (molecules, organelles, cells, tissues, organs).


There are four key characteristics common to metabolic pathways:

A. Metabolic pathways are irreversible.

B. Each metabolic pathway has a first committed step.

C. All metabolic pathways are regulated.

D. Metabolic pathways in eukaryotic cells occur in specific cellular locations.

This course helps you to develop a deeper understanding of plant metabolism.