SIU School of Medicine BIOCHEMISTRY
pH and Structural BiologyFaculty: J.W. Shriver Problem Unit 1 - Page 3
Most textbooks of biochemistry contain sections on pH and dissocia-tion and protein structure; some are more extensive than others. Anybiochemistry textbook that covers the subject in sufﬁcient detail soyou can answer the questions in the Problem Sets and Practice Examshould be sufﬁcient. Additional material can be found on the web atthe National Institutes of Health(
).C.Lecture/DiscussionsEspecially recommended for those who have not had biochemistryand for those who have questions.
A written examination will be scheduled. Answers to questions andthe solving of problems will be judged against the learning resources.Examples of exam questions are given in the Problem Sets. The passlevel is 70%.
Module 1: Acid/Base Chemistryof Biomolecules
Water makes up about 70% of a typical cell by weight. It is one of two solvents in which most of biochemistry occurs, the second beingthe lipids of membranes. Water is a very unusual substance and playsa central role in deﬁning life as we know it. Its large dipole momentmeans that it is a highly
liquid (at 37°C) and thus serves as anexcellent solvent for other polar (and
molecules are not easily dissolved in water and are referred to as
Hydrophobic molecules are excluded from an aque-ous environment because they cannot interact well with water andtherefore lead to a structuring of water in their vicinity (an unfavor-able process). Since hydrophobes generally mix well, they separate tominimize their interface with water and form a second distinct envi-ronment - the greasy, oily environment of lipids (
). Thebiochemical system can be viewed as two different environments: the