Medical Biochemistry

What is Medical Biochemistry?

Medical biochemistry looks at the structure and function of living things in relation to their application to medicine. Here at Leeds, we offer it for those students who wish to specialise more in areas relating to human health and diseases.

Why study Medical Biochemistry?

If Biochemistry is where your passion lies but you would also like to pursue an interest in medicine and medically related careers, then medical biochemistry at Leeds is an ideal choice. Through modules in neurodegeneration, cardiovascular disease and immunology, you will develop a strong understanding of the implications of biochemistry within medicine alongside the research and experimental skills all our students are equipped with.

MBiol, BSc Medical Biochemistry (Integrated Masters) has received interim accreditation by the Society of Biology. Find out more about MBiol BSc Accreditation (pdf download).

See also: Biochemistry

Course Overview

Our exciting Medical Biochemistry programme integrates practical, tutorial and lecture courses to deliver a course that will develop your knowledge from basic principles to the latest cutting edge developments in biochemistry.

BSc Year 1 BSc Year 2 BSc Year 3

Core modules

  • Introductory Integrated Biochemistry
  • Molecules and Processes of Life

Topics include

  • Structure and function of proteins and nucleic acids
  • Copying, processing and regulation of genetic information
  • Essential metabolism and its relation to disease

Introductory Biochemistry:
Practical Skills
Weekly laboratory classes will introduce key experimental techniques and the
skills required for effective experimental design and execution.

Introductory Biochemistry:
Problem solving and data handling tutorials
Weekly tutorials will develop skills in
solving biochemical problems through
interpretation of experimental data.
Additional, regular tutorials develop
scientific writing skills.

Programme modules

  • Intermediate Integrated Biochemistry

Topics include

  • Biological membranes and cell signalling
  • Molecular genetics
  • Theory and application of modern, biochemical techniques
  • Biochemical basis of health and disease

Intermediate Biochemistry:
Practicals
Students continue to develop their
practical skills and the weekly laboratory classes will have greater emphasis on experimental and project design.

Intermediate Biochemistry:
Skills
Students continue to develop
quantitative and analytical skills;
critical interpretation of research
literature and presentation skills.

Programme modules

Project chosen from

  • Laboratory
  • Literature
  • Computing

     

     

    Advanced topics 1,2 and 3 include

 

  • The molecular basis of innate immunity
  • Oncogenes and tumour suppressors
  • The world of viruses
  • Neurodegeneration from genes to therapy
  • How to create better proteins by directed evolution
  • Molecular motors

Optional modules

  • Pharmacology
  • Introduction to Genetics
  • Introduction to Microbiology
  • Introduction to Immunology

Optional modules

  • Biological membranes and cell signalling
  • Molecular genetics
  • Theory and application of modern, biochemical techniques
  • Biochemical basis of health and disease
  • Intermediate Biochemistry Practicals
  • Intermediate Biochemistry Skills
Advanced Biochemistry Skills:
Students continue to develop their analytical and research skills, together with their transferable skills, to prepare for a wide range of careers upon graduation.
Total Credits: 120 Total Credits: 120 Total Credits: 120

Course changes may occur given the fast-moving nature of the field and above is an indicative list only.

BSc year one

Year one offers a foundation in the key elements of biochemistry that can be applied to the medical specialisation that will come later in the degree. Alongside practicals and lectures, there will be weekly academic small group tutorials that will give you a chance to discuss the key concepts of biochemistry and develop your scientific skills in preparation for years two and three.

BSc year two

With an in-depth focus on topics that underpin modern biochemistry, such as the molecular pathologies of human health and disease, year two offers a chance to build on the foundations of year one and begin to become a true expert in your subject. By taking on more responsibility for your experimental design, you will learn more advanced laboratory techniques and further develop your research skills.

BSc year three

In year three you will develop the specialist knowledge that will enable an understanding of the current research within biochemistry and how it relates to the development of medical treatment for disease. Alongside studying modules in advanced topics in medical biochemistry such as oncegenes and tumour suppressors, you will also undertake an independent research project that will see you take ownership of your own research, under the supervision of a field leading expert.

MBiol year three and four

Year three of the MBiol will offer research preparation modules and a literature review alongside compulsory modules to help you make the step up to Masters level. In year four you will undertake an original extended-research project that will truly set you up for a career in research. Alongside this you will also study Masters level modules that will further develop your skills and give you the edge in the graduate job market.

Please note that year one and two are the same as the BSc for the MBiol.

To find out more about this MBiol degree programme download our guide and our overview on MBiol programmes.

Teaching

Our degrees are delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials and practicals. The first and second year will see a focus on these three teaching methods, building your skills, understanding and knowledge for your final year research project, which will see independent research and learning complemented with the guidance of leading experts in the field.

Typical timetable (3 year BSc)

  • Year one includes ten to twelve hours of lectures, a tutorial and a six hour lab practical session, plus private study time.
  • Year two consists of around eight to ten lectures per week, tutorials and a six hour lab practical session, plus plus private study time.
  • In year three your research project will take around three days per week (mainly in Semester One), you will also attend a number of associated lectures, plus private study time.

Across all three years, additional workshop and seminar sessions will complement your lectures and lab practicals, and you will also undertake private study. 

Discover more about our teaching.

The structure of your course will depend on the pathway that you choose:

Qualification

Course Title

Duration

BSc

Medical Biochemistry

3 years

BSc

Medical Biochemistry with industrial placement year

4 years

BSc

Medical Biochemistry with a study year abroad

4 years

MBiol, BSc

Medical Biochemistry

4 years

MBiol, BSc

Medical Biochemistry with industrial placement year

5 years

MBiol, BSc

Medical Biochemistry with a study year abroad

5 years

 

 

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Medical Biochemistry

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