Introduces the physics of biological systems. Topics vary according to instructor and student interest, but may include physics of proteins and nucleic acids, biomolecular motors, and diffusional signaling and sensing. Important experimental tools such as magnetic resonance and synchrotron x-ray crystallography will also be discussed. (WR)
Part I Ch 1 - Introduction Ch 2 - Tools for biophysical modeling Ch 3 - Look ahead Ch 4 - Discrete randomness Ch 5 - Useful discrete distributions Ch 6 - Continuous distributions Ch 7 - Poisson processes Ch 8 - What is light? Part II Ch 9 - Color vision Ch 10 - How photons know where to go Ch 11 - Direct and diffractive imaging Ch 12 - Randomness in chemical reactions Ch 13 - Genetic control networks Ch 14 - More general control networks Ch 15 - Noise in gene regulatory networks Ch 16 - What happens in photoreceptors
A few supplementary texts are suggested here, in no particular order. These should all be available in the Marston Science Library:
The goal of this course is to introduce some key concepts in the study of the physics of biological systems. We will study some of the ways that the mathematical and physical models and approaches shed useful light on the functional principles of important biological systems: How do you write down a quantitative, physics-based model that captures the behavior of a biological system in an enlightening and predictive way? The textbook develops statistical ideas and models, dimensional analysis, simple model systems, dynamical equations, and other such tools and then shows how they can be applied in biology. The first half of the course introduces a set of foundational statistical ideas with important applications in the study of biological systems. The second half will apply these tools to a diverse set of examples in biology, centered largely around the role of light in biology.
This course is intended to be accessible to most undergraduate students in science and engineering disciplines, especially those who have had some basic physics (mechanics and electromagnetism in particular) and who are comfortable with calculus of one variable (differentiation and integration).
The textbook author also has a website with datasets and other materials relevant to the homework and examples: Click here for details. Specific datasets are available here.
Homework will be collected in class. It will not be accepted out of class. Please do not slide it under my office door or place it in my mailbox. Each homework assignment will be graded on a 3-point scale (0-3 points). Late homework will not be graded and missed assignments cannot be made up. I will provide some sort of HW drop scheme at the end of the semester, so there is no need for you to provide an excuse for missed homework.
As there are no makeups available for the final exam, you should make no plans to leave campus prior to the scheduled exam date, 7:30-9:30 am, Friday May 4, 2012 (Exam group 4A). Please plan carefully. Check all deadline and exam dates carefully before you make any plans to travel away from campus during the semester. If you purchase an airline ticket to travel during the semester, and you later realize that your travel conflicts with a scheduled deadline or exam, you will have a problem.
Some students may nevertheless suffer from a severe personal or family emergency that forces them to miss a quiz or homework: Therefore, the two lowest quiz/homework scores will be dropped when final grades are calculated.
It is the policy of the University of Florida that the student, not the instructor, is responsible for arranging accommodations when needed. The instructor will not remind the student to schedule accommodations prior to each quiz or exam. If you require extra time for in-class work, you must initiate this request at least seven days before the exam or quiz.
What does "academic dishonesty" mean? Although it is normal and appropriate for students in this course to work together on homework assignments, certain other activities are inappropriate: these include plagiarism, fabricating data or information, giving or receiving any unauthorized assistance on quizzes or exams, and interfering with the academic work of other students. Submitting homework solutions that were simply copied or transcribed from another student, a book, or a website is clearly dishonesty, because it is not your own work. Supplying a false or fabricated excuse for missed academic work is also academic dishonesty. If the incident is the student's first offense at UF, the student will receive a failing grade in PHY4710. If not, the Dean of Students Office will decide the appropriate sanction.
The Dean of Students Office website has further details on academic honesty policies at UF.