Proteins and Enzymes

Protein structure and evolution, mechanisms of enzyme catalysis, techniques to determine protein structures.


  • BSc Biochemistry, BSc Medical Biochemistry


Year Two

20 Credits

By the end of the module the student should be able to:

  • Explain how the amino acid sequence of a protein is related to its structure and hence to its function; including simple ideas of protein evolution and common secondary structure motifs;
  • Describe some common protein folds and structural motifs, and relate these to the functional roles of motifs, and how the structures are stabilised.;
  • Evaluate techniques used to determine the primary , secondary, tertiary and quarternary structures of proteins and explain the biophysical principles behind these techniques;
  • Discuss the mechanisms underlying the catalysis of reactions by certain enzymes and methods used to determine enzyme rates and mechanisms;
  • Analyse and interpret numerical data of ligand binding, UV spectroscopy, pH and enzyme kinetics, including use of SigmaPlot;
  • Download, display and examine protein structure from the RSC protein database.


Exam (65%), Coursework (35%)