2023-2024 / ANIM0005-1

Functional biochemistry in health and disease


9h Th, 9h Pr

Number of credits

 Master in agricultural bioengineering (120 ECTS)2 crédits 
 Master in innovation management and the food design (120 ECTS)2 crédits 


Martine Schroyen

Language(s) of instruction

English language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the second semester


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

This course includes the following chapters: bioenergetics and metabolism (organization and regulation of the metabolic ways), glycolysis and hexoses catabolism connecting glucose and sugars, aerobic and anaerobic conditions, production of lactate....), citric acid cycle (citrate and respiratory chain of transport of electrons, components of the cycle of citrate and ways biosynthetic...), oxidative phosphorylation, biosynthesis of carbohydrates and gluconeogenesis (metabolism of glycogen, regulation of the metabolism of the carbohydrates....), biosynthesis of lipids, biosynthesis of amino acids and nucleotides (desamination, ion ammonium and cycle of urea, catabolism....).

In addition, the pathways and networks underlying biological functions e.g. immunological interactions, and the metabolic background of health disorders will be illustrated. Individual and group work will focus on such pathways and networks to understand the difference between health and disease in a biochemical manner.

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

The objective of this course is to describe the different metobolisms associated to cell activities and to describe the mecanismes of biosynthesis in animals and humans.
After completing the course the student is expected to
to describe and to explain the biochemistry of the biological functions.

This course contributes to the acquisition of the following skills:

  • Identify relevant qualitative and quantitative information related to an agronomic or biomedical process
  • Interpreting information related to an agronomical or biomedical process in order to identify the main elements
  • Diagnose agronomical or biomedical processes in technical terms
  • Present work by means of a powerpoint presentation

Prerequisite knowledge and skills


Planned learning activities and teaching methods

This course is taught in English.

Firstly, a few hours of theory on biochemistry and metabolism are foreseen. During these sessions, questions and exercises are listed and the students need to send in their answers by e-campus. Thereafter, the students are divided in small groups and they need to analyze a specific biochemical situation or they need to explain a disease at the biochemical level.

Mode of delivery (face to face, distance learning, hybrid learning)

Face-to-face course

Additional information:


Group discussions for the preparation of the presentation, together with the lecturer

Presentation of the individual work and the group work

Recommended or required readings


Exam(s) in session

Any session

- In-person

oral exam

- Remote

oral exam

Additional information:

40% of the final note is based upon the answers to the questions or exercises. 60% of the final note come from the presentation of the group work. There will a peer assessment for the group work.

If the student does not succeed during the first session (questions and group work), the second session will consist of a written exam.

Work placement(s)

Organisational remarks and main changes to the course


Martine Schroyen

Association of one or more MOOCs