Zachary Seguin

BIOL Courses

BIOL 101 – Biology in the Modern World

This course will introduce a variety of fundamental concepts of biology to non-majors. The goal is to improve scientific literacy. Topics will include the scientific method, biodiversity, genetics, evolution, physiology, and ecology.

BIOL 110 – Introductory Zoology

A study of the functional morphology of selected animals with special emphasis on the various grades of organization and development in the different phyla. [Offered: F]

BIOL 112 – Introductory Biology 2

An introduction to the basic principles of the structure and function of plants and animals within an ecological and evolutionary framework. The biology of multicellular organisms will be emphasized.

BIOL 120 – Introduction to Plant Structure and Function

A brief introduction to plant diversity, and the anatomy and physiology of vascular plants. The course will include a description of major cell and tissue types, and their organization in roots, stems, and leaves. Topics such as the processes of water and ion uptake, photosynthesis, long distance transport, and growth regulation will also be covered. [Offered: W,S]

BIOL 130 – Introductory Cell Biology

An introduction to the concepts of cell biology with emphasis on (1) the structural organization of the cell and (2) the function of critical molecular processes that are characteristic of living organisms.

BIOL 130L – Cell Biology Laboratory

Experiments to study the principles of cell biology that are elaborated in BIOL 130. [Offered: F,S]

BIOL 139 – Genetics

Mendelian genetics. Chromosomal mechanisms in mitosis and meiosis. The origin, inheritance and adaptive significance of chromosomal changes. Nucleic acids as the carriers of genetic information. Natural selection and the evolution of genetic systems. [Offered: W,S]

BIOL 140 – Fundamentals of Microbiology

Introduction to the biology of bacterial and archaeal organisms. Topics include cell structure and function, methods of cultivation, genetics, phylogeny and taxonomy, and metabolic and genetic diversity.

BIOL 140L – Microbiology Laboratory

Experiments to study the principles of microbiology that are elaborated in BIOL 140. [Offered: S, F]

BIOL 150 – Organismal and Evolutionary Ecology

This course provides students with an introduction to the basic principles of Scientific Reasoning, Ecology and Evolution. Coverage includes hypothesis testing and the nature of scientific inquiry, basic population genetics, physiological ecology, life histories, dispersal, basic population and community ecology, macroevolution, systematics and classification, as well as functional morphology. [Formerly BIOL 250. Offered: F]

BIOL 165 – Diversity of Life

An introduction to the diversity of living organisms from simple prokaryotes to complex eukaryotes. Current ideas on classification and phylogeny will be compared with traditional schemes. Morphology, ecology, and economic uses of representative Phyla and Divisions will be discussed. [Formerly BIOL 265. Offered: W]

BIOL 208 – Analytical Methods in Molecular Biology

An introduction to molecular methods used to analyze the structure of genes and genomes, including DNA sequencing, cloning, restriction mapping and bioinformatic tools. Techniques to monitor transcript and protein abundance, protein-protein and DNA-protein interactions will also be covered.

BIOL 211 – Introductory Vertebrate Zoology

An introduction to the structure, evolution and development of vertebrate organ systems. [Offered: W]

BIOL 225 – Plants and Civilization

This course examines the importance of plants and the role they have in the local and global community. It introduces students to the impact of plants on the past, present and future of human civilization and describes the importance of plants as sources of food, medicine, fuel, shelter, clothing and psychoactive agents. Topics include medicinal plants and human health, the origin of agricultural crops, plants that changed the course of history, plant-based biofuels, the green revolution, plant biotechnology and genetic engineering of plants. [Offered: F]

BIOL 239 – Genetics

Mendelian genetics. Chromosomal mechanisms in mitosis and meiosis. The origin, inheritance and adaptive significance of chromosomal changes. Nucleic acids as the carriers of genetic information. Natural selection and the evolution of genetic systems. [Formerly BIOL 139. Offered: W,S; online F]

BIOL 240 – Fundamentals of Microbiology

Introduction to the biology of bacterial and archaeal organisms. Topics include cell structure and function, methods of cultivation, genetics, phylogeny and taxonomy, and metabolic and genetic diversity.

BIOL 240L – Microbiology Laboratory

Experiments to study the principles of microbiology that are elaborated in BIOL 240. [Formerly BIOL 140L. Offered: S, F]

BIOL 241 – Introduction to Applied Microbiology

Introduction to microbial ecology, environmental microbiology, food microbiology and medical microbiology. Topics in environmental microbiology include biogeochemical cycling and biological treatment of wastes and pollutants. Topics in medical microbiology include concepts of immunology and host-parasite relationships. [Offered: W,S]

BIOL 250 – Organismal and Evolutionary Ecology

This course provides students with an introduction to the basic principles of Scientific Reasoning, Ecology and Evolution. Coverage includes hypothesis testing and the nature of scientific inquiry, basic population genetics, physiological ecology, life histories, dispersal, basic population and community ecology, macroevolution, systematics and classification, as well as functional morphology.

BIOL 265 – Diversity of Life

An introduction to the diversity of living organisms from simple prokaryotes to complex eukaryotes. Current ideas on classification and phylogeny will be compared with traditional schemes. Morphology, ecology, and economic uses of representative Phyla and Divisions will be discussed. [Offered: W]

BIOL 266 – Introduction to Computational Biology

This course provides an introduction to computational methods in biology, including exploration of bioinformatics databases and tools, analysis of protein and DNA sequences, and computer-aided modelling of biological systems. Labs will include practical experience applying computational tools to biological problems.

BIOL 273 – Principles of Human Physiology 1

The physiology of major organ systems of the human body. Topics include neurophysiology and peripheral nervous system, muscle, the cardiovascular system, the components of blood, respiratory system and immune system. The combination of BIOL 273 and BIOL 373 covers all of the major topics of human physiology.

BIOL 273L – Human Physiology 1 Laboratory

Experiments to study the principles of human physiology that are elaborated in BIOL 273. [Offered: W,S]

BIOL 280 – Introduction to Biophysics

Introduction to a physical understanding of biological systems at macro and molecular scales. The course is intended for 2nd year science and engineering students and will cover a broad spectrum of topics in biophysics, as well as an introduction to neurobiology, nanotechnology and biotechnology. [Offered: W,S]

BIOL 301 – Human Anatomy

This course will survey the basic human anatomical features of the skeletal, muscular, nervous, cardiovascular, endocrine and reproductive systems. Emphasis will be placed on functional and clinical anatomy.

BIOL 302 – Functional Histology

A hierarchical approach to biological structure with an emphasis on functional morphology. Starting with the cell, the fundamental unit of structure and function, the material progressively develops how cells organize to form tissues such as epithelium, connective tissue and muscle. Emphasis on how these tissue building blocks cooperate to form the major organs and organ systems of the human body. [Offered: W]

BIOL 303 – Introductory Developmental Biology and Embryology

Fundamental processes and concepts in embryonic development including the acquisition of multicellularity, organization of the early embryo, morphogenesis of tissues, major organ systems, fetal membranes, growth, differentiation and analysis of common developmental defects. [Offered: F, S]

BIOL 308 – Principles of Molecular Biology

Prokaryote and eukaryote genome structure and replication; mechanisms of gene expression and regulation.

BIOL 309 – Analytical Methods in Molecular Biology

An introduction to molecular methods used to analyze the structure of genes and genomes, including DNA sequencing, cloning, restriction mapping and bioinformatic tools. Techniques to monitor transcript and protein abundance, protein-protein and DNA-protein interactions will also be covered.

BIOL 310 – Invertebrate Zoology

The diversity of invertebrate animals will be explored in this class. Topics covered will include reproduction, development, life history, feeding, locomotion, and behaviour. [Offered: F]

BIOL 321 – Plant Anatomy and Morphogenesis

Plant structure in relation to tissue formation and development with particular reference to the angiosperms. Cell, tissue and organ differentiation will be discussed. Phenotypic variation in response to environmental influences will also be covered. [Offered in Fall of even years]

BIOL 323 – Plant Physiology

A study of plant physiological processes with an emphasis on the role of key metabolic pathways in plant growth and development. Topics such as photosynthesis, nitrogen assimilation, growth regulators, mineral nutrition, water relations, and stress physiology will be covered. [Offered in Fall of odd years]

BIOL 325 – Flowering Plants

A study of floral morphology in relation to classification and evolution. An introduction to taxonomy and nomenclature. History of taxonomy. Systems of classification. Mechanisms of pollination. [Offered: F]

BIOL 331 – Advanced Cell Biology

The functional organization of cells with particular reference to cell-cell interaction, the structure, function and development of organelles and the biological roles of cellular membranes. [Offered: W]

BIOL 335L – Molecular Biology Techniques

Selected experiments to provide students with a range of laboratory skills in recombinant DNA technology.

BIOL 341 – Fundamentals of Immunology

This course will provide students with an understanding of the fundamental concepts of the vertebrate immune system. Topics will focus on the components of the immune system, innate and adaptive immunity, immune cell development, communication, and recognition of non-self leading to an immune response. [Offered: W]

BIOL 342 – Molecular Biotechnology 1

Molecular biotechnology applies the principles of recombinant DNA technology (genetic engineering, gene cloning) to the development of commercial products. The methods of recombinant DNA technology, molecular diagnostic systems for detecting diseases and transgenic organisms will be discussed.

BIOL 345 – Microorganisms in Foods

Food preservation, spoilage, poisoning and modern concepts in quality assurance programs are studied. The aim is to understand factors governing microbial changes in foods. Problem solving in the food industry is emphasized. Laboratory work will reflect current practices in quality control and testing.

BIOL 346 – Microbial Ecology and Diversity

Examples from terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, and plant- and animal-associated environments, will be used to illustrate the activities and diversity of microorganisms in these habitats. The importance of the ecological roles of microbes to aspects of agriculture, geochemistry, human biology, and the biology of extreme environments will be considered. [Offered: W]

BIOL 348L – Laboratory Methods in Microbiology

Selected experiments to provide students with a range of laboratory skills in microbiology. [Offered: W]

BIOL 349 – Synthetic Biology Project Design

Synthetic biology involves developing new approaches, based on engineering principles, for genetic engineering of biological systems. Students will prepare a comprehensive research proposal for a synthetic biology project of their own design, under the supervision of a faculty member. Attendance at a weekly journal club focused on synthetic biology will be mandatory [Offered: F,W,S].

BIOL 350 – Ecosystem Ecology

This course provides an overview of the dynamic interactions among microbes, plants, animals and their physical environment with emphasis on ecosystem structure and function. Topics include the hydrological cycle, biogeochemical cycling, ecological energetics, roles of population and community interactions, paleoecology and current topics in ecosystem science. [Offered: F]

BIOL 351 – Aquatic Ecology

Study of the structure and function of lake and stream ecosystems. The course emphasizes biological components and processes, but includes the origin and nature of lake and stream systems and the fundamentals of surface water chemistry and physics. Human influences, management options and current issues will be examined with readings and project work.

BIOL 354 – Environmental Toxicology 1

An introduction to the basic theories, principles and techniques of environmental toxicology. A comparative study of the effects of specific groups of toxicants on ecosystems; biodegradation and cycling. [Offered: F,S]

BIOL 355 – Biology of Human Aging

An overview of current aspects of the biology of human aging and the functional changes associated with both normal aging and pathological problems often present in the elderly. Biological theories of aging and normal age-related structural and physiological changes on all of the major body systems will be discussed. Extrinsic factors such as diet and exercise and their role on the aging process will be examined as well as various medical treatments. [Offered: W]

BIOL 358 – Quantitative Ecology

This course will provide an introduction to the application of mathematical and statistical tools to problems in the field of ecology, using examples from individual, population, community, and ecosystem ecology. Coursework will explore the relationships between models, hypotheses, experiments and data.

BIOL 359 – Evolution 1: Mechanisms

A study of the processes of evolution; the differentiation of populations and the origin of new forms of life. [Offered: F, W; online S]

BIOL 360 – Evolution 2: Fossil Record

An overview of the origin of life, how it evolved and diversified, modern principles of paleontology with particular emphasis on analytical tools to interpret ancient life forms. Patterns, processes of evolution and paleoecology of key groups of microfossils, invertebrates, plants, vertebrates and their trace fossils. [Offered: W]

BIOL 361 – Biostatistics and Experimental Design

An introduction to hypothesis testing and experimental design in Biology. Topics will include: exploratory data analysis, analysis of variance, categorical data analysis, correlation, linear regression, multiple linear regression, power analysis, visualization tools and statistical software. [Offered: W]

BIOL 364 – Mathematical Modelling in Biology

An introduction to the mathematical modelling of biological processes using a variety of techniques including linear difference models, ordinary differential equations, and Markov models. Modelling applications ranging from genetics to ecosystem biology will be addressed. [Offered: F]

BIOL 365 – Methods in Bioinformatics

This course covers bioinformatics methods with an emphasis on analysis of high-throughput `-omics' data. Topics include analysis of genome-scale gene and protein expression, construction of species and gene trees from molecular sequence data, and analysis of biological systems using bioinformatics tools. Included will be practical experience with bioinformatics tools and datasets. [Offered: W]

BIOL 366 – Introduction to Bioinformatics

An introduction to the basics of bioinformatics including computational tools and databases used in the collection and analysis of DNA, RNA and proteins. [Notes: Offered in even numbered years. Offered: W]

BIOL 370 – Comparative Animal Physiology: Environmental Aspects

A comparative study of salt and water balance, circulation, respiratory systems, nitrogenous excretion, and mechanisms of energy acquisition and metabolism in animals. Adaptations to different environments will be emphasized. [Offered: F]

BIOL 371 – Comparative Animal Physiology: Evolutionary Themes

A comparative study of neural, sensory, endocrine, digestive and reproductive strategies across animal taxa. The emphasis will be on evolutionary themes at the organismal, cellular and molecular levels. [Offered: W]

BIOL 373 – Principles of Human Physiology 2

The physiology of major organ systems of the human body. Topics include the central nervous system, the sense organs, the digestive system, the endocrine system, the reproductive system, and the excretory system. [Offered: W]

BIOL 373L – Human Physiology 2 Laboratory

Laboratory exercises to study the principles of human physiology that are described in BIOL 373. [Offered: W]

BIOL 374L – Techniques in Animal Physiology

Laboratory exercises and computer-based simulations to study the functions of the cardiovascular, respiratory, nervous, digestive and excretory systems of vertebrate and invertebrate animals. Students will learn the techniques of recording data with mechanical and electronic instruments, handling of animals, and analysis of data with computational software. [Offered: W]

BIOL 376 – Cellular Neurophysiology

This course gives students background in neuronal signaling, ion channels, and methods in electrophysiological recording methods. The course requires completion of neuro-simulation laboratories, which provide an introduction to biophysical modelling to explain the functions of neural systems.

BIOL 377 – Systems Neuroscience: From Neurons to Behaviour

Systems neuroscience attempts to explain complex functions of the nervous system in terms of underlying neural circuits and molecules. A diverse range of systems - from sea snails and fruit flies to rodents and humans - with the help of interactive computer simulations will be used to illustrate principles of systems neuroscience.

BIOL 382 – Computational Modelling of Cellular Systems

An introduction to dynamic mathematical modeling of cellular processes. The emphasis is on using computational tools to investigate differential equation-based models. A variety of cellular phenomena are discussed, including ion pumps, membrane potentials, intercellular communication, genetic networks, regulation of metabolic pathways, and signal transduction.

BIOL 383 – Tropical Ecosystems

This course examines the fundamental concepts of terrestrial ecosystems in tropical climates. The course has three sections: (1) biophysical aspects (climate, location, landforms, soil, vegetation), (2) tropical resource systems (forest- and agroecosystems) within the framework of conventional and sustainable resource extraction, and (3) current conservation issues. Case studies are presented.

BIOL 403 – Advanced Topics in Developmental Biology

This course explores the cellular and molecular basis of developmental phenomena in animals. Lectures will emphasize the experimental basis for both historical and contemporary knowledge with a focus on the major developmental systems in model organisms. Course content will concentrate on themes that permeate current published research.

BIOL 412 – Arthropod Zoology

A survey of the phylum Arthropoda, including the insects, with emphasis on their classification, interrelationships and ways of life. [Offered: W]

BIOL 414 – Parasitology

This course will explore how parasites affect their host(s) and interact with other parasites. Attention will be given to eukaryotic parasites impacting human and domestic animal health. Public measures of parasite control will be covered. [Offered: W]

BIOL 426 – Phycology

Algae and applied uses of algae. Topics include examination of algal groups from evolutionary and ecological perspectives. Uses of algae in industry and food as well as negative impacts of various algal groups. [Notes: Offered in odd numbered years. Offered: W]

BIOL 428 – Plant Molecular Genetics

An examination of the current molecular techniques used to study plant development physiology. Topics include mutant isolation, transcript and metabolite profiling, gene silencing and protein localization. [Offered: W]

BIOL 431 – Bacterial Molecular Genetics

Bacterial molecular biology with an emphasis on the use of genetic tools to study the biology of microorganisms. Topics include mutagenesis, conjugation, recombination, gene regulation, plasmids, transposons, bacteriophage and genomics. [Offered: W]

BIOL 432 – Molecular Biotechnology 2

How recombinant DNA technology is used to produce vaccines, pharmaceuticals, crop plants, and other commercial products will be discussed. [Offered: W]

BIOL 433 – Plant Biotechnology

Biotechnological approaches and their applications in plant genetic manipulation, transformation and cell culture for plant improvement, propagation, and biochemical production. [Offered: W]

BIOL 434 – Human Molecular Genetics

Recent advances in human molecular genetics will be examined with emphasis on how human disease-causing genes are mapped, identified, isolated and characterized. Examples will draw from research on Duchenne muscular dystrophy, Huntington disease, cystic fibrosis, Alzheimer disease, cancer, vision defects and other disorders. [Offered: F]

BIOL 438 – Molecular Biology of Animal Development

An examination of the current major issues in the regulation of gene expression during animal development with emphasis on technical and conceptual advances. Current research literature will be reviewed. [Offered: W]

BIOL 439 – Environmental and Natural Products Biochemistry

This course deals with the functions, distribution and environmental ramifications of natural compounds produced by plants and other biological systems. Natural products are those compounds usually described as secondary metabolites, i.e. those apparently non-essential products whose physiological and ecological functions are either obscure or are of peripheral importance to the organism. However, many of these non-essential products have profound competitive, economic and pharmacological significance; and as research proceeds, their physiological roles within the parent organisms are becoming clearer. As well, this course has a strong emphasis on how environmental chemical and physical processes impact on living organisms and their biochemistry. [Offered: F]

BIOL 441 – Advances in Immunology

A survey of the recent advances in the vertebrate immune response; the cells and tissues of the lymphoid system; humoral and cell-mediated immunity; initiation and regulation of the immune response; the immune system and disease, emerging techniques used in immunology. [Offered: W]

BIOL 442 – Virology

A survey of viral structures, life cycles, and the interactions of viruses with their hosts. The laboratory component will include procedures used for viral detection and titration, as well as individual library research projects. [Offered: W]

BIOL 443 – Fermentation Biotechnology

Biology of industrial micro-organisms: fermentation systems; fermentation raw materials; downstream processing; biomass production; food fermentations; production of industrial chemicals, food additives, enzymes and other products by fermentation. [Offered: F]

BIOL 444 – Bacterial Pathogenesis

A study of the bacteria involved in pathogenesis, their mode of infection, symptoms and prevention of diseases. The laboratory will focus on identification of bacterial isolates. [Offered: F]

BIOL 447 – Environmental Microbiology

A study of the environmental impact of microorganisms. Aspects of pollution, waste treatment, biodegradation of environmental contaminants, and nutrient cycling will be examined. [Offered: F]

BIOL 448 – Microbial Physiology and Biochemistry

A study of the physiology of microorganisms. Provides biochemical and molecular level detail on the diverse structures and metabolic functions of bacterial, archaeal, and eukaryal cells. Aspects of microbial growth, nutrition and metabolism are examined in the context of how microorganisms develop diverse solutions for meeting essential requirements for life. [Offered: F]

BIOL 449 – Public Health Microbiology

How the health of human populations is influenced by microbial communities. Aspects of the epidemiology of infectious diseases, factors influencing the emergence of microbial pathogens and antibiotic-resistant strains, means to control undesired microbial populations in habitats such as water, biodegradable materials and food will be discussed. Approaches to the regulation and monitoring of microbial agents will also be examined.

BIOL 450 – Marine Biology

Ecological processes and evolutionary adaptation are explored in the world's largest and most diverse ecosystems. The major ocean habitats will be characterized, stressing their importance as resources, moderators of climate and reservoirs of biodiversity. [Notes: Offered: W]

BIOL 452 – Quantitative Fisheries Biology

The practices of fisheries science including the effects of industrial fisheries on fish stocks, methods of capture, obtaining, using and interpretation of vital statistics of fish stocks, population estimation, stock-recruitment, growth, mortality and fecundity. Emphasis is placed on the use of statistical information for making ecological inferences about the status of fish populations. Familiarity with linear regression is essential. [Offered: F]

BIOL 455 – Ecological Risk Assessment and Management

Examination of the use of scientific information characterizing the risks posed to the environment by anthropogenic stresses. Discussions will take place in the context of aquatic ecology and presume a background of standard aquatic toxicology methods. Methods for assessing risks, including environmental impact assessment, risk quotients, national and international risk assessment paradigms, and cumulative effects assessment will be examined. Critical connections between assessment and management will also be discussed. [Offered: F of even years]

BIOL 456 – Population Biology

The analysis of the structure and dynamics of plant and animal populations. Theoretical, mathematical and experimental approaches to the study of population ecology.

BIOL 457 – Analysis of Communities

A study of the organization, structure and development of communities with emphasis on vegetation change. Topics include: diversity, stability; succession; sampling procedures and multivariate analysis. [Offered: W]

BIOL 458 – Quantitative Ecology

The course addresses the integration of mathematical and statistical tools to solve problems in ecology, using examples from individual, population, community, and ecosystem scales. Coursework will explore the relationships between models, hypotheses, experiments and data.

BIOL 461 – Advanced Biostatistics

Advanced aspects of statistics and experimental design for biologists. Topics will include analysis of variance (factorial, hierarchical and blocking designs; fixed- and random-effects models); a-priori and a-posteriori comparisons; multivariate analysis of variance; analysis of covariance; multiple linear regression; multivariate statistics (indirect and direct gradient analysis). [Offered: W]

BIOL 462 – Applied Wetland Science

Advanced concepts on wetland ecosystems in the context of regional and global earth systems processes such as carbon and nitrogen cycling and climate change, applications of wetland paleoecology, use of isotopes and other geochemical tools in wetland science, and wetland engineering in landscape rehabilitation and ecotechnology. Current issues in Canada and abroad will be examined. [Offered: F]

BIOL 465 – Structural Bioinformatics

Functional and structural analysis of proteins using bioinformatics tools. Topics include protein structure visualization, structure comparison and prediction, prediction of protein function and interactions, molecular dynamics, and protein design. [Offered: W]

BIOL 466 – Biogeochemical Microbiology

A study of the microbial contribution to Earth's biogeochemical cycles. This course examines the bacterial and archaeal microbial communities that contribute to nutrient cycling in terrestrial and aquatic environments. Emphasis is placed on the discovery of new organisms and enzymes involved in these processes and the use of innovative methodologies to explore their ecology

BIOL 467 – Plant-Bacterial Interactions

Molecular and biochemical mechanisms used by soil bacteria; bacterial genes involved in plant growth promotion; biocontrol of pathogens; communication between bacteria in the soil; environmental cleanup facilitated by plants and bacteria; regulatory and social issues regarding the deliberate release of bacteria to the environment.

BIOL 469 – Genomics

An applied course on the computational exploration of genomes. Topics include comparative and evolutionary genomics, metagenomics, and genomics applications in health/medicine. The lab will involve analysis of genomic datasets using scripting and bioinformatic software.

BIOL 470 – Methods of Aquatic Ecology

An introduction to methods used to sample and characterize the ecological structure and function of aquatic ecosystems, including basic aspects of the abiotic environment. Field trips to lake and stream sites are combined with laboratory analysis of samples and data. While the main emphasis is on the techniques, the exercises also provide direct experience with some of the natural and anthropogenic variation observable in aquatic systems.

BIOL 472 – Cell Biology of Human Disease

This course focuses on the nature and mechanisms of disease processes. Abnormalities in the structure and function of cells, tissues and organs that underlie disease are explored. Emphasis is placed on current research aimed at understanding the mechanisms of disease and disease therapy, covering topics including inherited disorders, cellular pathology and immunology, diabetes and cancer.

BIOL 473 – Mammalian Reproduction

This course will provide an in-depth coverage of reproductive biology in a range of mammalian species. Emphasis will be on the principles underlying the regulation of key reproductive processes, from the whole animal to the molecular level. Topics will include applications of these principles to human and veterinary medicine, and ethical problems posed by some reproductive technologies. [Offered: F]

BIOL 474 – Bioprocessing

The course will provide an understanding of the principles and practices of processing biological materials, which represents an essential core activity of the biotechnology, agri-food, chemical and pharmaceutical industries. Individual processing operations involved and important industrial processes will be developed in this course. [Offered: W]

BIOL 475 – Current Topics in Applied Microbiology

Students will explore a variety of topics in applied microbiology as reflected by journal articles in the current literature. [Offered W].

BIOL 476 – Systems Neuroscience: From Neurons to Behaviour

Systems neuroscience attempts to explain complex functions of the nervous system in terms of underlying neural circuits. The course focuses on how neural circuits analyze sensory information, form perceptions, make decisions, and execute movements, as well as contribute to high-level mental functions such as language, memory, and self-awareness.

BIOL 477L – Techniques in Animal Physiology

Laboratory exercises and computer-based data collection to study the functions of the cardiovascular, respiratory, nervous, digestive and excretory systems of vertebrates and invertebrate animals. Students will learn animal handling techniques, data collection with state of the art physiological equipment and data analysis using computer software. Tutorials will allow students to investigate and discuss current animal physiology research topics in greater detail. [Formerly BIOL 374L. Offered: W]

BIOL 479 – Population Genetics and Evolution

This course provides an overview of the interplay among mutation, random and non-random mating, genetic drift, gene flow and selection within and among natural populations. Special emphasis is placed on the dynamic role these factors play in the process of population divergence, and ultimately speciation. Case studies will illustrate the application of population genetic methodology in fields such as ecology, conservation biology, and forensic sciences. [Offered: F]

BIOL 480 – Molecular Ecology

This course will provide an overview of the application of modern molecular methodologies such as DNA sequencing and microsatellite genotyping to Ecology and Organismal Biology. Topics covered will include parentage and mating systems, population analysis, species delineation and phylogeography. Special emphasis will be placed on the importance and use of molecular methods in conservation biology. [Offered: Winter in even numbered years]

BIOL 483 – Animal Cell Biotechnology

A study of the techniques and applications of animal cell culture to biotechnology. Topics include basic cell culture technique, gene modification, products of animal cell culture, large-scale productions, and tissue engineering. [Offered: F]

BIOL 484 – Advanced Eukaryotic Genetics

The role of classical genetic analysis in the context of today's genomic era. Topics: meiotic recombination, meiosis, complementation analysis, chromosome aberrations, and genetic interactions. Methods used in model eukaryotic genetic organisms such as forward and reverse genetic screens, genetic mosaics, conditional mutants, and genetic mapping will be discussed. Examples will illustrate how genes continue to be identified using classical-based approaches in a variety of biological processes, including cell cycle progression, cancer and metastasis, learning and memory, as well as pattern formation and embryonic development. Alternatives to traditional mutagenesis-based screens and the links between classical and molecular genetics will also be discussed. [Offered: W]

BIOL 485 – Conservation Biology

An introduction to conservation biology and the ongoing biodiversity crisis. Topics will include the history of conservation biology and impacts on populations, communities, and ecosystems. [Offered: W]

BIOL 486 – Glycobiology

Monosaccharides and their linkages; conformations of oligosaccharides; glycoconjugates/glycoproteins: their physiological functions and how they are synthesized; O- and N-glycosylation; receptors and lectins; glycobiology of plants, viruses and microbes; glycobiology and disease; glycans as bio-energy sources.

BIOL 487 – Computational Neuroscience

Introduction to quantitative principles in the analysis of neurophysiological systems. Biophysics of excitable membranes. Encoding of sensory information in neural spiking activity. Bayesian models in perception and motor control. Models of synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory. [Note for Systems Design Engineering students: It is recommended that one of BIOL 273, 376, 377 or BME 284 or SYDE 384 be taken before or concurrently with SYDE 552. Offered: W]

BIOL 488 – Ecotoxicology from a Watershed Perspective

The course will explore the scientific principles behind predicting the risk of environmental contaminants on ecosystems at the watershed scale. Using an environmental risk assessment framework, case studies will be used with an emphasis on local watershed issues, to more fully understand the mechanisms and processes that control and modify impacts of natural gradients and human activities on the ecology of drainage basins. The course may include a local field trip. [Offered W, even years] Field trip fee: $30-50 to offset cost of transportation.

BIOL 489 – Arctic Ecology

This course explores the unique ecology of Arctic and sub-Arctic ecosystems. Topics addressed will include postglacial history, climate, permafrost, nutrient cycling and food web structure of terrestrial, marine, and freshwater systems, plant and animal adaptations to cold, human ecology, traditional ecological knowledge, climate change, resource extraction, and other human impacts.

BIOL 490A – Biology Field Course I

A two-week field study of terrestrial, aquatic and/or marine biology offered by the Ontario Universities Program in Field Biology (OUPFB). OUPFB offers a diverse array of courses annually that normally take place at off campus locations. Field courses consist of lectures, field exercises, and a small project chosen in consultation with the course instructor(s). Contact the Biology Department field course coordinator for additional information.

BIOL 490B – Biology Field Course II

A two-week field study of terrestrial, aquatic and/or marine biology offered by the Ontario Universities Program in Field Biology (OUPFB). OUPFB offers a diverse array of courses annually that normally take place at off campus locations. Field courses consist of lectures, field exercises, and a small project chosen in consultation with the course instructor(s). Contact the Biology Department field course coordinator for additional information.

BIOL 490C – Biology Field Course III

A two-week field study of terrestrial, aquatic and/or marine biology offered by the Ontario Universities Program in Field Biology (OUPFB). OUPFB offers a diverse array of courses annually that normally take place at off campus locations. Field courses consist of lectures, field exercises, and a small project chosen in consultation with the course instructor(s). Contact the Biology Department field course coordinator for additional information.

BIOL 490D – Biology Field Course IV

A two-week field study of terrestrial, aquatic and/or marine biology offered by the Ontario universities program in field biology (OUPFB). OUPFB offers a diverse array of courses annually that normally take place at off campus locations. Field courses consist of lectures, field exercises, and a small project chosen in consultation with the course instructor(s). Contact the Biology Department field course coordinator for additional information.

BIOL 491A – Aquatic Field Biology

A two-week study of the flora and fauna of lakes, bogs and streams. Emphasis on biosystematics, distribution and dynamics of organisms. Both population and community approaches are stressed. This course will normally be held in Algonquin Park, Ontario each September. Courses sponsored by Ontario Universities Program in Field Biology, at other times of the year also qualify.

BIOL 491B – Field Course in Terrestrial and Aquatic Biology

A two-week study of the flora and fauna of terrestrial environments, lakes and streams. Emphasis on biosystematics, distribution and dynamics of organisms. Both population and community approaches are stressed. This course will normally be held in Algonquin Park, Ontario each September. Courses sponsored by Ontario Universities at other times of the year also qualify.

BIOL 492 – Marine Mammals and Seabirds

A three-week field course at the Huntsman Marine Science Centre, St. Andrews, NB. Marine mammals and seabirds will be observed under natural conditions through frequent field trips at sea and ashore. There is a strong emphasis on field research and each student will complete an independent research project. Lectures and labs will introduce the evolution, zoogeography, morphology, ecology, physiology, and behaviour of diving air-breathing vertebrates.

BIOL 496 – Neuroscience Research Seminar

Current and classical topics in neuroscience research will be explored, discussed and presented by students. [Offered: W, even-numbered years]

BIOL 498A – Short Biology Field Course 1

A one-week field study of terrestrial, aquatic and/or marine biology offered by the Ontario Universities Program in Field Biology (OUPFB). OUPFB offers a diverse array of courses annually that normally take place at off campus locations. Field courses consist of lectures, field exercises, and a small project chosen in consultation with the course instructor(s). Contact the Biology Department field course coordinator for additional information.

BIOL 498B – Short Biology Field Course 2

A one-week field study of terrestrial, aquatic and/or marine biology offered by the Ontario Universities Program in Field Biology (OUPFB). OUPFB offers a diverse array of courses annually that normally take place at off campus locations. Field courses consist of lectures, field exercises, and a small project chosen in consultation with the course instructor(s). Contact the Biology Department field course coordinator for additional information.

BIOL 499A – Senior Honours Project

A senior-year research project.

BIOL 499B – Senior Honours Project

A senior-year research project.

BIOL 602 – Fisheries Biology

The literature and methods of Fisheries Biology. Examination and discussion of selected topics of interest to the class. Emphasis will be primarily, but not exclusively on the ecology, habitats, and management issues related to temperature freshwater fish.

BIOL 604 – Animal Cells in Culture

The theoretical and technological aspects of growing cells from multicellular organisms in vitro and the use of these cell cultures in cell biology, biotechnology, cancer research, developmental biology, immunology and toxicology. Specific topics will include tissue dissociation, media, contamination, microscopic examination, cell storage, cell fusion, heterokaryons, reconstituted cells, hybrids, hybridomas, and the introduction of macromolecules into cells. The stress on specific topics might change from year to year.

BIOL 605 – Environmental Animal Physiology

An advanced study of the physiological processes used by animals to respond to changes in environmental conditions. The study will focus on adaptation strategies used by animals to changes in temperature and other rate controlling environmental factors.

BIOL 606 – Advanced Aquatic Ecology

Team taught by faculty of the Aquatic Ecology Group, fundamental and emerging topics will be examined through literature review, seminar discussions and summary papers.

BIOL 608 – Advanced Molecular Genetics

Genetic aspects of the control of gene expression in bacteria, bacteriophages and (or) eukaryotes will be stressed. Recently published works will serve as the focal points for discussion. The specific content of any one set of topics to be analyzed in a particular term will be determined in consultation with the participants.

BIOL 610 – Biosystematics and Evolution

The processes of organic evolution are examined in detail under the following topics: the nature and origin of variation; the transmission of variation from one population to another (gene flow); breeding systems and isolation; hybridization and introgression; modes of speciation and the species concept. Although plants will be emphasized, examples will be taken from the other major groups of organisms. (Offered in Winter Term, concurrently with BIOL 459) (previously BIOL 473).

BIOL 611 – Plant Growth Regulation I

Critical analysis of the chemistry functions, modes of action and interactions of auxins, gibberellins, cytokinins, ethylene, abscisic acid and other growth substances (including phenolics and synthetic growth regulators) at the molecular, cellular and organismic levels.

BIOL 612 – Phylogenetic Reconstruction and Analysis

An examination of the theory and tools used in the reconstruction of phylogenies. This includes sequence retrieval, alignment and analysis as well as character and distance based phylogenetic applications. Emphasis will be placed on the application of these elements to real data sets.

BIOL 614 – Bioinformatics Tools and Techniques

The thoretical basis of various bioinformation tools will be presented and discussed, and applied to research tasks within the laboratory component of the course. Topics may include advanced BLAST searching, multiple sequence alignments, sequence logos, expression databases, functional annotation of proteins, structural visualization, and comparative structural modeling.

BIOL 617 – Advanced Topics in Environmental Toxicology

A critical evaluation of current research topics in environmental toxicology will be undertaken. Emphasis will be placed on the ecosystem approach to toxicology including cycling of toxicants, routes by which toxicants are removed from the environment and the impact of toxicants on species interaction within communities. Consideration will also be given to new methods for toxic hazard prediction and evaluation, as well as to biotic and abiotic factors that modify toxicant impact.

BIOL 618 – Advanced Microbial Physiology

Discussion of current advances in selected topics in physiology of prokaryotic and/or eukaryotic microorganisms. Recently published research results will be the central points for the discussion. The topics might include but are not limited to microbiol growth behaviour under extreme conditions, microbial roles in the cycles of specific elements, processes of energy conservation, and properties and functions of key enzymes in microbial metabolic pathways.

BIOL 621 – Transport Phenomena in Plants

Critical review of current concepts in the water relations, ion uptake and transport processes of higher plants. Structure and function will be emphasized and appropriate consideration given to the biophysical and biochemical principles involved in each physiological process.

BIOL 622 – Selected Topics in Plant Physiology

Discussions of selected topics not covered in other courses. These may include juvenility, dormancy, senescence, plant response to environmental stress, morphogenesis, photosynthesis and biochemistry.

BIOL 623 – Floral Morphology and Taxonomy

An advanced study of floral structure in which the following topics are dealt with: the diversity of floral structure and how this relates to modes of pollination, systems of classification and the identification of flowering plants, nomenclature, and the origin and evolution of flowering plants.

BIOL 624 – Environmental Biogeochemistry

The influence of physical, chemical and microbiological processes on groundwater geochemistry are examined. Background concepts in microbial ecology and organic geochemistry are developed and related to subsurface environments. Treatment is given to biodegradation of organic pollutants, microbially-mediated redox reactions and organic-metal interactions. EARTH 439 is strongly recommended.

BIOL 625 – Applied Limnology

Management and restoration of lakes and reservoirs. Diagnosis and evaluation of environmental problems, economics, method selection. Analysis of physical and chemical remediation methods including advanced sewage treatment, phosphorus precipitation, hypolimnetic withdrawal and aeration, sediment treatment. Discussion of procedures to control algal and macrophyte biomass including artificial circulation, water level drawdown, mechanical harvesting, biomanipulation and biological controls. Restoration and management of stream habitats and the riparian zone. Recommended: undergraduate course in limnology or water pollution biology.

BIOL 627 – Topics in Applied and Industrial Microbiology

One or more topics will be addressed in detail through review of literature, including patents, and current practices in industrial microbiology. The topics might include but are not limited to Bacillus subtilis: a workhorse in industrial fermentations; production of microbiol lipids; Aspergillus fermentations. Each student will present a seminar on an assigned topic and the class will work as a group to prepare an up-to-date review of publication quality.

BIOL 628 – Morphogenesis

Aspects of genetic and developmental processes that underlie morphogenetic phenomena in diverse eukaryotes will be discussed. Topics may include limb morphogenesis and regeneration, transcriptional response to hormonal action, erythropoiesis, morphogenetic-dependent cell and tissue interactions, differentiation and organization of germ-line tissue, use of developmental mutants to study developing systems, etc. Areas of concentration will be determined at the beginning of each term.

BIOL 629 – Cell Growth and Differentiation

Discussion and evaluation of recent studies relating to the cell cycle and cell differentiation. The cell cycle: mechanisms and regulation of cell growth, DNA replication, mitosis and differential gene expression. The role of cell interactions, hormones and growth factors in the control of proliferation. Cell-cycle models. Cell differentiation: cell interactions and experimental control of differentiation in vitro.

BIOL 631 – Multivariate Methods in Ecology

This course introduces multivariate statistical methods commonly used in ecology. Topics covered will include clustering, ordination, discriminant functions analysis, canonical variates, multiple regression, and some multivariate analyses of variance.

BIOL 636 – Advanced Immunology

Discussion of current advances in selected topics in immunology. The areas to be covered will include cell-mediated immunity, humoral immunity, comparative immunology, and other topics of current interest.

BIOL 642 – Current Topics in Biotechnology

Recent developments in biotechnology, both applied and basic, will be emphasized. The course will cover such topics as the development of vectors for the stable transformation of plant cells, the isolation, characterization and manipulation of plant, animal and microbial genes, and the use of microorganisms to develop new products and processes.

BIOL 645 – Recent Advances in Microbial Ecology

Recent advances in selected topics of microbial ecology will be examined. Topics will be selected from soil, fresh water or other ecosystems with an important microbial component.

BIOL 646 – Paleolimnology

This course examines the use of stratigraphic records from lakes to reconstruct environmental change. Topics include sediment coring techniques, radiometric dating methods, analysis of physical, geochemical and biological indicators, and case studies demonstrating applications to address scientific and management questions. Practical experience is gained from a lake sediment coring field trip and subsequent laboratory analyses. *eligible for MES.

BIOL 650 – Bio-Molecular Tools

The ability to detect, isolate and manipulate bio molecules such as DNA and RNA has created powerful tools that have been instrumental in advancing science and medicine. In BIOL 650 we will investigate the current state of the art biological tools. This course will be prefaced by a historic overview of RNA and DNA as will as other bio-molecules detailing their discovery, chemistry and the relationships between them. Subsequent lectures will then concentrate on how these molecules are manipulated and used in modern biology with a particular emphasis on methods that integrate bio molecules into systems for diagnostics, high-throughput genomics and proteomics, and imaging.

BIOL 651 – Hydroecology for Freshwater Ecosystem Management

This course examines the interaction in both space and time between hydrological processes and lacustrine environments. Applications to freshwater ecosystem management are explored.

BIOL 652 – Advanced Ecology

Discussion of the major concepts in ecology, and current advances in selected topics. A broad overview of important ideas in population, community and ecosystem ecology will be provided, and following this, recently published research results on a subset of topics will become the central focus of the course. Topics might include but are not limited to: spatial-temporal dynamics of populations, meta- and hierarchical community structure, and species-specific influences on ecosystem function.

BIOL 667 – Animal Molecular Biology

Selected topics in molecular biology will be presented at an advanced level with the aim of evaluating recent contributions and developments. Basic concepts and organismic interrelationships will be emphasized. The topics will concentrate on mechanisms of replication, transcription and (or) translation. Specific themes for discussion will be arranged each time the course is presented.

BIOL 669 – Plant Molecular Biology

Critical discussion of current developments in plant biology. The course will cover such topics as the structure, organization, replication and expression of plant and algal genetic material. Emphasis will be placed on understanding basic molecular mechanisms and processes.

BIOL 670 – Photobiology

The involvement of light in biological processes. The first half of the course involves detailed discussions on the physical properties of light, the interactions of light with matter, and photochemical and photobiological methods. The second half of the course deals with the current literature in photobiology. Topics include photomorphogenesis, photoinduced toxicity, photodynamic therapy, photodamage, DNA repair, vision, and transduction of light signals.

BIOL 675 – Advanced Topics in Animal Behaviour

This course will deal intensively with a subject area in the field of animal behaviour. The particular topic for a given term will be determined by the interests of the participating members of the class. Suggested topics include: mating systems in the animal kingdom; patterns of parental care; cost/benefit analyses of social living. Recommended: a basic knowledge of animal behaviour and a devoted interest.

BIOL 678 – Current Topics in Neurophysiology

Principles and applications for the study of membrane proteins in physiological processes will be covered, with particular emphasis on voltage-, receptop- and second messenger-operated channels. Discussions will focus on modern techniques employed in electrophysiology, pharmacology, imaging and biochemistry.

BIOL 680 – Specialized Studies of Selected Research Procedures, Strategies or Topics

Critical evaluation and discussion of topics and procedures in biology that are not covered in existing graduate courses. The course must be specially arranged with a faculty member. Students may take only one BIOL 680 course for credit. (Offered to Master's students only.)

BIOL 681 – Specialized Studies of Selected Research Procedures, Strategies or Topics

Critical evaluation and discussion of topics and procedures in biology that are not covered in existing courses. The course must be specially arranged with a faculty member. Students may take only one BIOL 681 course for credit. (Offered to PhD students only.)

BIOL 690 – Scientific Communication

The goal of the course is to introduce new graduate students in the department of Biology to the basic skills that will be necessary for them to acquire and organize information as well as present it effectively. The course will be given in two sections, in different terms; Topic 1: Life Science Research Skills (fall of a student's first year) and Topic 2: Scientific presentation (winter of a student's second or third year). The participants are expected to also attend and participate in the weekly "Biology Brown Bag Gathering" which is a forum for students and post doctoral fellows to present their research results or lead discussions on current topics of general interest. This series will start each fall with a presentation on "How to give a talk".