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Supramolecular and Bioinorganic Chemistry


Supramolecular and Bioinorganic Chemistry


Academic year 2018/2019

Course ID
BIO0168A Pds 306-TB
Degree course
[0101M21] Molecular Biotechnology
2nd year
Teaching period
First semester
Related or integrative
Course disciplinary sector (SSD)
CHIM/03 - chimica generale e inorganica
Formal authority
Type of examination
Type of learning unit
Modular course
Inorganic chemistry Physical chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Biochemistry

Course objectives

The course aims at providing the students with the fundamentals of molecular recognition, of the interactions responsible for the formation of supramolecular systems and on the role of metals in biological systems and medicine. The student will be introduced to the principal classes of supramolecular systems (organic / inorganic of biological interest) together with the main techniques currently used for their characterization.


Results of learning outcomes

- Knowledge of the nature of non-covalent interactions at the basis of the formation of supramolecular compounds which are held together by intermolecular bonds.

- Knowledge of the basic coordination chemistry and of the interdisciplinary approach to study the peculiar role of metals in biology and their interaction with organic and biological molecules.

-Basic knowledge of different spectroscopic techniques used to study metals in biological systems and intermolecular interactions.

- Capability to analyse data resulting from the methods indicated above



1) Principles of the molecular recognition (Hydrogen-bond and the weak intermolecular interactions, the coordinative bond; chelating effect)

2) The determination of the thermodynamic stability constant of host/guest supramolecular adducts

3) Organic and Inorganic supramolecular systems; Self-assembling systems: Cyclodesxtrins, Micelles and Liposomes; and their biomedical applications; molecular machines.

4) Basic coordination chemistry for biotechnologists.

5) Overview on spectroscopic methods to study metals in biological systems.

6) Biological ligands for metal ions.

7) Transition metals in biology; the role of Zn, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, Co

8) Metals in brain their role in neurodegeneration.

9) Metals in medicine and metals as drugs.


Course delivery

20 hours lesson + 4 hours seminars


Learning assessment methods

The examination is carried out in written form¸ The final mark is expressed in thirtieths.


Suggested readings and bibliography

1) Jonathan W. Steed, David R. Turner, Karl J. Wallace, ¸Core Concepts in Supramolecular Chemistry and Nanochemistry; Wiley, 2007.

2) JW Steed, JL Atwood Supramolecular Chemistry, Wiley, 2009.

3) RR Crichton Biological Inorganic Chemistry, Elsevier, 2013.


Class scheduleV

Friday11:00 - 13:00

Lessons: dal 12/10/2018 to 18/01/2019

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