Biochemistry and Pathobiochemistry

Accreditation valid until: 28. 11. 2028

Chairman of the Subject Area Board:

prof. MUDr. Zdeněk KLEIBL, Ph.D.

Institute of Medical Biochemistry and Laboratory Diagnostics
First Faculty of Medicine Charles University and General University Hospital
U Nemocnice 2
128 08  Prague 2
phone: +420 224 965 745
e-mail: @email

 

Coordinator for the Second Faculty of Medicine:
prof. MUDr. Richard Průša, CSc.
Department of Medical Chemistry and Clinical Biochemistry
Second Faculty of Medicine Charles University and Motol University Hospital
V Úvalu 84
150 06  Prague 5
phone: +420 224 435 300
e-mail: @email

 

Members of the Subject Area Board

Characteristics of the study programme

The objective of studies in the study programme is preparation of the student for autonomous scientific explanation of molecular principles of life processes in the human organism, their direction and molecular mechanisms of their disorders.
Biochemistry and pathobiochemistry is concerned with the issues of biomacromolecules, i.e. proteins and enzymes, polysaccharides, lipoproteins and nucleic acids, as well as their component units and other important low molecular weight substances in living systems (amino acids, peptides, saccharides, lipids, steroids). The objective of the field is also explanation of their mutual changes and their role in cell signalling. Another very important sphere is the research into super-molecular cell structures and their function. The programme also focuses on the principles of disorders of the said structures and their functions, i.e. on the molecular nature of the origin, development and course of pathologic states. One important part of the study is the physiological and pathogenetic importance of reactive forms of oxygen and nitrogen; the subject of the study programme is mechanisms of action of the substances that damage the nucleic acids and biomembranes. In the study programme, attention is paid to research into disorders of cell signalling, including cancerogenesis and atherogenesis, molecular nature of hereditary and acquired metabolic disorders, mechanisms of maintenance of stable internal environment (metabolic and ionic balance) and the allied pathologic disturbances. The programme also deals with the development of new laboratory diagnostic methods.

Admission procedure requirement specific to the study programme

The conditions and course of the admission procedure for the part-time of study are the same as the conditions for the full-time form. 

We recommend to contact your potential supervisor in advance and consult the suitable form of preparation for the interview. Each study programme has its own specifics, so the supervisor can help you to prepare for the specialized entrance examination (the interview).

Topics of dissertation thesis

The SAB did not list any topics. The candidate chooses the preliminary topic individually and contacts a potential supervisor. He/she consults with him on the chosen topic and agrees on its more precise specification. In case of any ambiguity, we recommend that you also contact the chairman of the SAB. If necessary, he/she can recommend that he/she consult the topic with another specialist according to the focus of the intended project.

If the candidate does not know which topic/supervisor to choose, he/she will contact the chairman of the SAB, with whom he/she will consult on a suitable topic and a potential supervisor.

This choice is preliminary, the admissions board may, after consultation with the candidate, nominate another supervisor.

Supervisors of the study programme

Each supervisor must be approved by the SAB. The criteria for admitting new supervisors are determined by the SAB. If the proposed supervisor has not yet been approved by the SAB, this must be done no later than the enrollment of the applicant in the study (provided that the applicant is accepted). You can find a list of supervisors approved by the SAB here. After clicking, the supervisor's workplace and contact information will be displayed.

Requirements during the study

Study obligations for full-time and part-time form of study are the same. 

  • After admission, compilation of ISP, its acceptation by the supervisor and guarantor of the programme.
  • Passing of at least two courses organized by the SAB of Biochemistry and Pathobiochemistry or by the coordinating SAB of the doctoral study programmes of Biomedicine published at http://pdsb.avcr.cz after discussion with the supervisor and his recommendation.
  • Language examination in English.
  • State doctoral examination (recommended in the 1st to 2nd year of study conditions see below).
  • Participation in national and international congresses.

Requirements for internships

At least one month long study stay or internship abroad recommended.

Listed courses

B90275 Biomedicine and biotechnology

Requirements for the SDE

Requisites for commencement of the examination:

  • Passing at least two courses organized by the SAB for Biochemistry and pathobiochemistry or the Co-ordinating Council of DSPB.
  • Language examination in English. The SAB recommends and internationally recognized type of examination (TOEFL, Cambridge), however study rules of particular faculties allow to take the language examination at the faculty’s institute of languages and admit recognition of the state language examination in English.
  • On principle, the state doctoral examination always takes place before submission and defence of the dissertation thesis.

The course of the SDE

The applicant shall present his/her topic in a 10–15 minutes long speech. The board shall ask 4–6 questions. In a closed session, the board shall evaluate the course of the examination and sets the mark. The result will be announced to the student. The members of the board will sign the protocol of the examination.
 

Examination topics for the SDE

General biochemistry topic areas

- Relation of the structure of biomolecules to their properties and functions – proteins, nucleic acids, saccharides, lipids.
- Metabolism of saccharides and lipids in the aspect of biological energetics.
- Enzymes – mechanisms of action, kinetics, regulation of activity.
- Biological synthesis and decomposition of amino acids, their transformation to specialized biomolecules – porphyrins and bile pigments. Neurotransmitters, hormones.
- Biochemistry of transmission of genetic information (enzymology of nucleic acids).
- Proteosynthesis.
- Regulation of gene expression.
- Molecular principles of intracellular cell signalling.
- Molecular principles of intercellular communication.

Supramollecular biochemistry

- Structure of membranes and cell organelles
- Cytoskeleton
- Extracellular matrix
- Function of cell organelles (Golgi apparatus, endoplasmic reticulum, lysosomes, mitochondria, ribosomes)
- Membrane transport
- Cell cycle and its regulation, tumour cell proliferation
- Apoptosis

Examples of special topic areas (according to the doctorand’s bias)
Methodology

- Isolation and purification of biomolecules
- Immunochemical methods
- Sequencing of proteins and nucleic acids
- Manipulation with nucleic acids, gene engineering
- Isolation of cells, cell cultures
- Spectrophotometry

Other questions considering the topic of the dissertation thesis – will be set by the examining board and supervisor.

Recommended literature

A university textbook of medical biochemistry, e.g.
Harper’s illustrated biochemistry, by Murray R. K. et al.
Medical Biochemistry, by J. Baynes and M. Dominiczak
Molecular Biology of the Cell, by Bruce Alberts

Publication activity requirements

Being the first author of a publication, principal investigator of a grant by Grant Agency of Charles University (GA CU) or similar.

Defence requirements

  • State doctoral examination;
  • At least two original publications pertaining to the topic of the dissertation thesis, with the total impact factor at least one. In one of them, the applicant should be shown as the first author. Position of the first author shared with a collaborator is accepted if the total impact factor of the publication is at least 4.0.
  • The SAB requires a Summary of the Dissertation.

Profile of a graduate of the study programme

The graduate is acquainted with current research topics, trends and experimental approaches especially in the following areas: inborn errors and their biochemical consequences, metabolic disorders, current issues in experimental oncology and research of cellular signalling disorders especially in connection with proliferation, differentiation and programme death of cells. It is ready to transfer the knowledge to the development of new laboratory diagnostic and therapeutic methods. Graduate knows the rules of scientific work and the principles of the work in biochemical and biological laboratories. He/she is acquainted with the question of financing the research and with the procedure for obtaining a grant. He/she is trained in methods of presentation of results and their publication in a appropriate journals. Graduate acquainted with a number of biochemical and molecular biological methods.

Information about graduate employment 

Graduates will be employed as researchers at theoretical institutes of medical and natural science faculties, institutes of the Czech Academy of Sciences, biomedical research centres and possibly as employees of clinical laboratories. They will also be in high demand as university teachers.

Created: 19. 5. 2021 / Modified: 10. 3. 2022 / Responsible person: ThDr. Jitka Sýkorová, Ph.D.