13520 - Animal Biology

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2017/2018

Learning outcomes

After completing this module, the student will have knowledge on general biology of animal organisms (evolutionary biology, reproduction, embryonic development, nutrition, locomotion, breathing and transport, excretion) through the study of model groups. In particular, the student acquires: - a critical and comparative knowledge on biodiversity in the animal field, - a general overview of the adaptations of animals to the plurality environment.

Course contents

INTRODUCTION
Science and Biology in the social context. Brief history of Biology. Modern Biology. The scientific method.

THE ORGANIZATION OF LIFE
The chemical basis of life. Organic compounds: proteins, carbohydrates, lipids and nucleic acids. The organization of the cell. Biological membranes. Cellular communication.

THE FLUX OF ENERGY THROUGH THE ORGANISMS
Energy and metabolism: biological work, free energy, ATP, energy transfer in REDOX reactions, enzymes. ATP synthesis in the cells: the processes of chemical energy extraction.

CONTINUITY OF LIFE
Chromosomes, cell cycle, mitosis and meiosis. DNA replication. From DNA to proteins: gene espression. Mutations. Regulation of gene expression. Genomes. Gene expression and development.

EVOLUTION
Introduction to the Darwinian concept of evolution. Mechanisms of evolution: evolutionary change in populations. Speciation. Marcoevoluton. Evolution od genes and genomes. Development and evolution (Evo-Devo).

BIODIVERSITY
Understand biodiversity: sistematics and phylogeny. Viruses and subviral agents. Bacteria. Archaea. The origin of eukaryotes. Protists.

ANIMAL REPRODUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT
Asexual and sexual reproduction. Oogenesis and spermatogenesis. Fertilization. Segmentation. Gastrulation.

ANIMAL STRUCTURE AND FUNCTION (a primer)
Cells, tissues, organs, and systems. Immune system: xxxxxxxxx, antibodies. Vaccines.

Readings/Bibliography

E.P. Solomon, C.E. Martin, D.W. Martin, L.R. Berg
FONDAMENTI DI BIOLOGIA (Edizione VII/2017)
(Volume unico)
Ed. EdiSES

H. Curtis, N.S. Barnes, A. Schnek, A. Massarini
INVITO ALLA BIOLOGIA (Edizione I/2017)
(Volume unico)
Ed. Zanichelli

D. Sadava, D.M. Hillis, H.C. Heller, M. Berenbaum
BIOLOGIA (Edizione IV/2014)
(Volumi 1,2 e 3)
Ed. Zanichelli

Teaching methods

Lectures

Assessment methods

Written test with both multiple choice and open questions, followed by oral discussion.

Teaching tools

Slides, online contents.

Office hours

See the website of Fabrizio Ghiselli