Medical biochemistry is taught to medical, dental and pharmacy students in accordance to the programmes adapted to those specialties. The quintessence of this course is development of analytical biochemical-medical way of thinking in a student with the help of problem-based assignments. This means that all the basic knowledge studied (not mechanically memorized!) throughout the course is gradually integrated in logical analysis of both fundamental and clinical problems by the students. We believe, that this is the only way for a coming-to-be specialist to follow the rapid development of medical science – to be prepared for life-long studying and orientate adequately in piling information of internet age. Finally this approach, in integration with other fundamental sciences, will generate a needful solid basis for a student in becoming an up-to-date top specialist. There must be added that the objective presumption of the latter is an active participation in lectures, seminars and practical works by the student.
Lectures. The Department of Biochemistry has published some original books. Those sources contain all the basic information needed to learn medical biochemistry programme. That is why the lectures concentrate on the principal problems of human biochemistry as well as on themes that have proven to be most troublesome for students.
Practical works/ seminars. Practical works and seminars mostly include problem-based analysis. We introduce theoretical basis of biochemical methods and give a possibility to achieve a certain level in using them. Every major theme ends with a test to control the theoretical (and practical) skills of students. The debts in practical works/ seminars should be corrected by the end of regular class-work in each semester. If a student has missed 3 or more seminars/ practical works without an effective reason, he/she may be prohibited to attend practical works/ seminars this year. Attending seminars equals attending practical works meaning both are compulsory. If a student misses one seminar, he/she is expected to prepare a written review on a theme concerning this seminar. The level of preparation and the skills acquired during the seminar are evaluated in A-F system, valid in TU.
Preliminary examination. With a final grade “A”, the student has achieved at least 91% of the level needed for midterm. Final grade “B” gives 81%, “C” 71%, “D” 61% and “E” 60%. With a final grade “F” the student is not allowed to the preliminary exam.
Exam. In order to be allowed to the exam both the final grade for the semester preceding the exam and the grade of midterm should be at least “D” (or acknowledged for the latter). The exam is oral. The questions of the exam are presented as problem analyses. If the final grades of the preceding semester as well as of the semester ending with a midterm are “A”, the student gets to present only one problem analysis. The final grade “B” adds one problem analysis, "C" adds two and “D” adds three problem analysis. The order of retaking midterm or exam follows the instructions presented in Tartu University rules for the organisation of education (can be looked up in the booklet of TU, Medical faculty).
ARBK.01.003 Medical Biochemistry (8 ECTS), for students of dentistry
Objectives and brief desciption
Medical Biochemistry is completely human organism-oriented topic for dentists. The aim of the course is to give an updated discussion of the selected and medical relevant knowledge of human body basic biomolecules and the metabolic pathways underlying the functions of human body; to provide the students with knowledge about the oxidative stress and oxidative stress-driven diseases (including caries, periodontitis, gingivitis); to give an updated basics of nutrition, extracellular matrix and bone (tooth) metabolism and disorders of calcium and phosphate metabolism, and to develop student´s biochemical-medical thinking. The latter is needed: a) for understanding the molecular mechanism of functioning the human organism and development of diseases (especially connective tissue); b) for using the medical biochemistry experience and knowledge permanently developing science-based dental practice. The following problems are highlighted: a) basic biomolecules of human body (carbohydrates, lipids, amino acids, nucleic acids), their biofunctions, disorders and main diseases (biochemical-medical background of the metabolic disorders in the case of carbohydrates, lipids, amino acids, nucleic acids); b) biochemistry of saliva, extracellular matrix, bone, teeth; c) contemporary biochemical analysis of science-based human nutrition; e) clinically informative markers of human body biofluids; f) assay of proteins and clinical marker enzymes in biofluids of human body.
ARBK.01.029 Biochemistry (3 ECTS), 2nd semester, for students of medicine
Objectives and brief description
Biochemistry in Faculty of Medicine is a medicine-based subject, which introduces chemical structure of low molecular weight metabolites and polymeric biomolecules of human body, reactivity of their functional groups and major metabolic reactions. (Basically, subject is: General Principles of Medical Metabolomics). The aim of teaching of Biochemistry is to give general knowledge about human body bioactive molecules from the medical metabolomical viewpoint, which can be used as good basis in studies of medical biochemistry and other subjects following biochemistry (physiology, pharmacology, patophysiology, microbiology, clinical biochemistry etc.). Biochemistry in Faculty of Medicine is a subject, which introduces medical students to the classification and nomenclature of human body biomolecules, explains configuration, conformation and stereochemistry of metabolites and other biomolecules. General types of metabolic reactions of human body and their biomedical background are important parts of subject. Furthermore, structure and biomedical characteristics of structural and functional biomacromolecules as peptides, proteins, carbohydrates, lipids and nucleic acids are introduced. Last part of Biochemistry deals with mixed macromolecules and structure of cellular membrane. Biochemistry is medicine-based subject, therefore all examples of human body biomolecules and reactions are chosen on the basis of human metabolism and today´s medical diagnostics.
ARBK.01.030 Medical Biochemistry (11 ECTS), two semesters, 2nd year, for students of medicine
Objectives and brief description
Medical Biochemistry is completely human organism-based topic which uses contemporary new original specific textbooks. The aim of this human-organism targeted course is to provide students with basic knowledge of contemporary Medical Biochemistry and develop biochemical-clinical thinking, which are required: a) for understanding of molecular mechanism of human organism functioning and development of diseases; b) for systemic acquiring of new scientific conceptions needed for evidence based medicine; c) for using the Medical Biochemistry experience and knowledge in hospital practice. In particularly, the following problems are highlighted: -basic biomolecules of human body (disorders of structure and diseases); -clinically informative biochemical parameters of several fluids of human body; -assay of proteins and several clinical marker enzymes in fluids of human body; -biochemical background of the metabolic disorders in the case of carbohydrates, lipids, aminoacids, nucleic acids; -biochemical/molecular background of main diseases; -biochemistry of liver, kidney, muscles, brain; -biochemical background of detoxification of xenobiotics (including drugs); -contemporary biochemical-medical background of nutrition.
ARBK.01.042 Bioorganic Chemistry (5 ECTS) 3rd semester, for students of pharmacy
Objectives and brief description
Bioorganic chemistry is medicine-based course for pharmacy students. Main objective of this course is to master the knowledge about basic organic chemistry, nomenclature of organic compounds, their classification, and reactions of most important functional groups. The course is important for medically relevant knowledge about structure and physico-chemical properties of drugs, metabolites and other bioactive organic compounds and also about their synthesis and functionality. Course basic topics are helpful in further studies of Medical Biochemistry, Physiology, Pharmacology, etc. The following problems are highlighted: a) the principles of nomenclature and classification of organic compounds,especially drugs and metabolites; b) stereochemistry of drugs, metabolites and biomacromolecules and its biomedical importance; c) general types of chemical reactions and synthesis methods of organic compounds; d) structure and activity relationships of organic compounds (especially metabolites of human body and drugs), e) general types of metabolic reactions of human body and their biomedical importance.
ARBK.01.043 Medical Biochemistry (5 ECTS), 3rd semester, for students of pharmacy
Objectives and brief description
This course provides students with basic knowlegde of contemporary Medical Biochemistry and develop biochemical-clinical thinking. Primary aims of this course: a) To give an updated discussion of the selected and in practical work relevant knowledge about human body biomolecules and the metabolic events, underlying the specific functions of cells of the human body and disorders. b) To give an updated and human body oriented biochemical basis of medicinal products containing of vitamins and/or minerals and cosmetics, food additives and analyse pharmaceutically important aspects of nutrition. c) To develop biochemical-pharmaceutical thinking and to create the basis for using the biochemical experience in the practice of the future and to guarantee the systemic acquiring of new scientific conceptions in the field of biochemistry. The following problems are highlighted: a) basic biomolecules of human body (their structure an biofunctions); e) vitamins and hormones and human organism (including science-based analysis of medical preparations of vitamins); c) overview of metabolism of carbohydrates, lipids, amino acids, nucleic acids; d) biochemical background of detoxification of xenobiotics (including drugs); c) science-based analysis of role of human nutrients and principles of nutrition.