Elective courses

Regular courses

BQA510019 – Biochemical Basis of Psychiatric Disordersases 
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Instructor: Ana Lúcia Severo Rodrigues
Description: Neurochemical mechanisms implicated in the pathophysiology of major psychiatric disorders (depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and anxiety): role of neurotransmitter systems, intracellular signaling pathways, transcription factors, neurotrophic factors, and neuroplasticity mechanisms. Endogenous mechanisms of mood regulation. Biochemical mechanisms of action of pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments. Biochemical bases for the development of new treatment strategies.

BQA510037 – Molecular Bases of Cancer
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
Instructor: Rozângela C. Pedrosa and Alfeu Zanotto Filho
Description: Concepts on the molecular basis of cancer. Metabolic reprogramming in tumor cells. Genetic signatures in cancer. The role of inflammation in carcinogenesis. Molecular targets in cancer therapy.

BQA4216000 – Structural and Molecular Biology
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
Instructor: Hernán F. Terenzi and Bóris J. C. Ugarte Stambuk
Description: Protein-protein interaction. DNA-protein interaction. Biochemical and biophysical methods of analysis of protein-protein interactions (electrophoresis, ‘crosslinking’, circular dichroism, fluorescence spectroscopy). Biochemical and biophysical methods and analysis of DNA-protein interaction (electrophoresis, ‘UV-crosslinking’, ‘electrophoretic mobility shift assay’, enzymatic and chemical ‘footprinting’). Chemical reagents to elucidate the molecular basis of DNA recognition by proteins. Three-dimensional structure of DNA-protein complexes from biochemical and molecular biology experiments. Heterologous expression of proteins in E. coli (practice).

BQA4212000 – Toxicological Biochemistry
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
Description: Absorption and distribution of toxic agents. Metabolism of toxic agents. Interaction of toxic agents with specific molecular targets. General mechanisms of detoxification and toxicity of some toxic agents. Carcinogenesis, neurotoxicity, hepatotoxicity, and nephrotoxicity.

BQA510047 – Functional and Molecular Biology of Obesity and Diabetes
Credit Hours: 04 (60 class hours)
Instructor: Alex Rafacho
Description: i) endocrine physiology and signal transduction: water-soluble and fat-soluble hormones; ii) physiology of pancreatic islets: development, biosynthesis, secretion and hormonal action; iii) physiology of food intake: neurohumoral regulation; iv) biology of adipose tissue: structure, metabolism and functions; v) obesity and metabolic syndrome (MS): diagnosis and pathophysiology; vi) history of diabetes mellitus (DM): from papyri to recent discoveries; vii) molecular basis of insulin resistance; viii) type 1 diabetes mellitus and monogenic diabetes: diagnosis and pathophysiology; ix) type 2 diabetes mellitus: diagnosis and pathophysiology; x) basic notions of pharmacotherapy in DM; xi) experimental designs in obesity and DM; xii) elaboration of a scientific question involving obesity or diabetes.

BQA51003 – Science and Management of Laboratory Animals with emphasis on Biochemical Assays
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
Instructor: Rozângela C. Pedrosa
Description: Legislation, bioethics, and biosafety in the use of laboratory animals. Animal facilities. Animal welfare and behavior. Laboratory animal breeding. Experimental models.

BQA410012 – Cytoskeleton: Pathophysiological Aspects
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Instructor: Ariane Zamoner Pacheco de Souza
Description: The content of this course covers the study of cellular and molecular aspects of the cytoskeleton of eukaryotic cells, with emphasis on the main constituents of the cytoskeleton: microtubules, microfilaments, and intermediate filaments. Functional aspects of the cytoskeleton in cells. The cytoskeleton and neurodegenerative diseases. Molecular mechanisms of cell signaling. Protein kinases and phosphatases. Cytoskeleton as a target in different cell signaling pathways. Involvement of the cytoskeleton and cell signaling in the regulation of cell function and pathophysiological processes.

BQA4206000 – Co-orientation of Scientific Initiation
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Description: Orientation of an undergraduate student by the Ph.D. candidate on the theme of the Doctoral project. It aims to provide preliminary experience in human resources orientation and training.

BQA 4210000 – Steroids I and II: Classical mechanisms of action and modulation of cellular activities in target tissues
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
Instructor: Fátima Regina Mena Barreto Silva
Description: Structural characteristics and solubility, biosynthesis, transport, catabolism and excretion, ligands of nuclear receptors, principles of signaling via nuclear receptors, classification of nuclear receptors, transactivation of nuclear receptor elements, signaling by retinoids, vitamin D3 and thyroid hormones, classical mechanisms of action, developmental consequences and metabolic disorders.

BQA510041 – Advanced Studies in Research I
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Instructor: Prof. Dra. Joana M. Gaspar
Description: Production and dissemination of knowledge: research paradigms, interdisciplinarity, and innovation. Research project: theoretical and methodological aspects. Preparation of articles for journals indexed in international reference bases. Development of projects for raising international financial resources.

BQA510031/41 – Functional Genomics and Bioinformatics
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
Instructor: Prof. Dr. Guilherme Razzera and Prof. Dr. Guilherme Toledo
Description: Genomic organization, gene annotation, alternative splicing mechanisms and their implications for transcription and translation processes. The course provides the practical application of knowledge in the assembly of transcriptomes in different physiological situations, as well as the comparative 3D modeling of proteins and molecular docking of ligands of interest.

BQA4221000 Neuro-Immunoendocrine Interactions
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Description: Functional and structural basis of the immune system, inflammatory response, and stress-induced immune responses. Neuroendocrine control of immune function and chemical messengers involved in neuroimmune-endocrine interactions. Activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis by cytokines, inflammation, and behavioral changes. Neuro-immune-endocrine interactions and drugs of abuse, autoimmune diseases, and diseases of the central nervous system. Techniques applied to the study of endocrine and neuro-immune processes.

BQA4213000 – Molecular Mechanisms of Intracellular Signaling
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
Rodrigo Bainy Leal and Carla Inês Tasca
Description: Molecular mechanisms involved in signal transduction. The action of cytokines, growth factors, and neurotransmitters. Protein kinases and protein phosphatases. Organization and functioning dynamics of intracellular cell signaling modules. Protein-protein interaction. Regulation of the activity of enzymes, cytoskeletal proteins, receptors, anchoring proteins, ion channels, and transcription factors through phosphorylation mechanisms. Role of these mechanisms in the regulation of cellular activities related to development, cell death, cytotoxicity, cytoprotection, and neuroplasticity.

BQA510042 – Methylglyoxal metabolism and associated pathologies
Credit Hours: 04 (60 class hours)
Alcir Luiz Dafré
DescriptionCharacteristics and synthesis of alpha-ketoaldehydes; Detoxification mechanisms: glyoxalases (Glo1/2), alpha-ketoreductases (AKR), deglycases (DJ1/PARK7), triosephosphateisomerase (TPI). Glycolysis and other associated metabolic pathways; Methylglyoxal and receptors: RAGE, GABA(A), and TRPA1; Recent discoveries. Pathologies associated with methylglyoxal: diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s; Central effects of methylglyoxal: anxiety, depression, epilepsy; Molecular targets of methylglyoxal.

BQA510021 – Mitochondrial Oxidative Metabolism
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Alexandra S. Latini
Description: Oxidative processes are involved in the control of mitochondrial energy production. The main oxidative processes in different cellular scenarios in the central nervous system, as well as in peripheral tissues, will be discussed. The main tools used to study mitochondrial function will also be presented.

BQA510048 – Scientific Methodology Applied to Biomedical Sciences
Credit Hours: 04 (60 class hours)
Alex Rafacho
Description: i) history of empirical science: from philosophy to the scientific method; ii) characterization of the scientific method and scientists’ formation; iii) inside scientific publication: what and why to publish, journals, and publication process; iv) evaluation of scientific activity: indices, citations, and frauds; v) elaboration of a scientific question: where to start the questions and how to proceed with the bibliographic review; vi) objective: the heart of everything; vii) research planning and data collection: actions that precede planning, design, statistics, and sampling; viii) analysis and interpretation of results: what should and should not be taken into account; ix) scientific writing: the logic and structure behind the text and the routine of scientific writing; x) dissemination in congresses: preparation of works and the importance of dissemination in scientific events; xi) training scientists (academic routine): why train scientists? xii) simulation of an oral presentation at a scientific event: creation, elaboration, and dissemination of the work.

BQA510035 – Neurobiology of Obesity and Metabolic Diseases
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Joana M. Gaspar
Description: Mechanisms of metabolic regulation by the central nervous system in the regulation of nutritional and energy homeostasis. The main pathways of the central nervous system for regulating the regulation of energy homeostasis will be discussed, namely control of hunger and energy expenditure. The main processes that lead to the deregulation of these neuronal mechanisms and how they cause eating disorders and metabolic diseases will also be addressed.

BQA4223000 – Patch Clamp and Electrophysiology: techniques for studying ion channel activity
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Introduction to the structure and function of ion channels, measurements, and activity of voltage-gated ion channels, introduction to Patch Clamp and electrophysiology, construction of electrode measurements, design and recording of pipettes, and bath solutions, data collection, and analysis.

BQA510034 – Intellectual Property, Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Biosciences
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Instructor: Rozângela Curi Pedrosa
Description: Concepts in Intellectual Property (IP). National and international legal frameworks in IP. Types of intellectual protection: trademarks, invention patents, utility model patents, industrial designs, cultivars, computer programs, and integrated circuit topography. Priority search in the Patent database. Access to Genetic Heritage. Academic plagiarism. Technological Prospecting. Innovation Concepts. Innovation systems. Concepts and processes in Entrepreneurship. Business plan. Technological entrepreneurship in Biosciences: Startup, incubators and technology parks.

BQA4214000 – Proteins: Structure and Study Methods
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
Hernán F. Terenzi
Description: Levels of protein organization and functional diversity. Mechanisms modulating protein activity. Structure-function relationships. Catalysis, and allosteric modulation of protein activity. Post-translational modifications. Protein chemistry.

BQA510036 – Regulation and Metabolic Integration
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
 Afonso Celso Dias Bainy and Rodrigo Bainy Leal
Description: Carbohydrate, lipid, amino acid, and nucleic acid metabolism. Photosynthesis and the carbon cycle. Secondary metabolism. Metabolic interrelationships. Regulation of metabolism: gene expression, compartmentalization, enzyme inhibition/activation, allosteric modulation, post-translational modifications. Metabolic receptors and sensors. Signal transduction mechanisms. Metabolic engineering principles.

BQA410013 – Redox Regulation
Credit Hours: 03 (45 class hours)
Alcir Luiz Dafré
Description: Recent findings on redox regulatory mechanisms in biological systems. Redox regulation through the antioxidant systems related to glutathione and peroxiredoxin. Role of hydrogen peroxide, nitric oxide (NO), and superoxide in redox signaling. Classical signaling pathways modulated by redox reactions.

BQA4208000 – Topics in Biostatistics
Credit Hours: 02 (30 class hours)
Instructor: Marcelo Farina
Description: (i) Basic concepts in Biostatistics; (ii) Descriptive statistics; (iii) Statistical hypothesis tests; (iv) Gaussian distribution; (v) Comparison of means; (vi) One-way Analysis of Variance; (vii) Analysis of Variance of two or more factors; (viii) Correlation; (ix) Use of Statistical Software.