Lower Division MCB Courses

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Biology 1A: General Biology Lecture. (3 units; Syllabus
Prerequisites: A grade of C- or better in Chemistry 1A and Chemistry 1AL or a 4 or 5 score on the Chem AP test; Chem 3A or 112A recommended. Biology 1AL must be taken concurrently (unless exempt by major).
General introduction to cell structure and function, molecular and organism genetics, animal development, form and function. Intended for biological sciences majors, but open to all qualified students. View Syllabus (F,SP,SU)

Biology 1AL: General Biology Laboratory. (2 units; Syllabus 
Prerequisites: Must be taken concurrently with Biology 1A. (F,SP,SU)

MCB 11: Of Molecules and Man: A View for the Layman. (3 units)   
Students will receive no credit for 11 after taking Biology 1A, 11; Chemistry 3A-3B, 10 or 112A-112B, 112H.
Examination of molecular mechanisms that underlie normal functions of living organisms and ways in which those functions are disrupted by medical disorders and environmental agents. Designed to provide non-biologists with an understanding of modern biochemistry and the ways we control and alter the biology of our life and environment. (not currently offered)

MCB 15: Current Topics in the Biological Sciences. (2 units; Syllabus)
Course may be repeated for credit as topic varies. Two hours of lecture and one hour of discussion per week. Prerequisites: Suitable for freshmen who plan to major in a biological science. Students in this course will critically examine modern methods of biological investigations and their social implications. Relevant literature will be used to present basic biological concepts that address the cultural, technological and health aspects of current topics in the biological sciences. Designing and evaluating scientific questions will be stressed. (SP) Matsui

MCB C31: Big Ideas in Cell Biology. (3 units; Syllabus)  

Students will receive no credit for Molecular and Cell Biology C31/Letters and Science C30X after taking Biology 1A, 1B, Molecular and Cell Biology 31, or 41. Two hours of lecture and one hour of discussion per week. An introduction for students who do not intend to major in biology but who wish to satisfy their breadth requirement in Biological Sciences. Some major concepts of modern biology, ranging from the role of DNA and the way cells communicate, to interactions of cells and creatures with their environment, will be discussed without jargon and with attention to their relevance in contemporary life and culture. Also listed as Letters and Science C30X. (SP) Wilt

MCB 32: Introduction to Human Physiology. (3 units; Syllabus)
Prerequisites: One year high school or college chemistry. A comprehensive introduction to human cell biology. The course will concentrate on basic mechanisms underlying human life processes, including cells and membranes; nerve and muscle function; cardiovascular, respiratory, renal, and gastrointestinal physiology; metabolism, endocrinology, and reproduction. (F)

MCB 32L: Introduction to Human Physiology Laboratory. (2 unit; Syllabus)
Prerequisites: 32 or may be taken concurrently. Experiments and demonstrations are designed to amplify and reinforce information presented in 32. Exercises include investigations into the structure and function of muscle, nerve, cardiovascular, renal, respiratory, endocrine, and blood systems. (F)

MCB 41: Genetics and Society. (3 units; Syllabus)
Students will receive no credit after taking Letters and Science 18.
Prerequisites: Primarily for students not specializing in biology. Basic communication of inheritance; gene mapping; gene expression and genetic disease in animals and humans; social inheritance of genetics. Offered alternate years. (SP)

MCB C44: Biology for Voters (3 units; ; Syllabus; cross-listed with L&S C30Y) This is a Discovery Course for non-Biology majors designed to introduce lower-division college students to biology through the lens of the contemporary problems facing people, the planet and the species of the planet. Modern genetic contributions will be presented on such issues as genetic engineering of plants and animals, the emergence of new pathogens, the role of genetic variation among individuals, and the extent to which DNA is and isn't destiny. Each week will close with the presentation and discussion of a defining biological challenge facing the world.

MCB 50: The Immune System and Disease. (3 units; Syllabus)    Students will receive no credit for 50 after taking MCB 102 or MCB C100A/Chem C130.
Prerequisites: High school chemistry or Chemistry 1A and high school biology or Biology 1A. Course will discuss how the immune system resolves, prevents, or causes disease. A general overview of the immune system will be covered in the first five weeks followed by five weeks discussing infectious diseases including anthrax, mad cow, herpes, malaria, tuberculosis, and HIV. In addition, other lectures will focus on current immunology topics including vaccines, autoimmunity, allergy, transplantation, and cancer. (SP)

MCB 55: Plagues and Pandemics (3 units; Syllabus)
Students will receive no credit for 55 after taking 100, C100A, 100B, 102, 103, C103, 150, Chemistry C130, Plant and Microbial Biology C103, and Public Health C102.
Discussion of how infectious agents cause disease and impact society at large. We will examine historical and current examples of plagues and pandemics and consider the question of what we should do to ameliorate the impact of infectious disease in the future. The course is intended for non-majors and will begin by briefly providing necessary background in microbiology and immunology. The primary focus in each subsequent week, however, will be on discussing a particular infectious disease. The course will be broad in scope covering biological, historical, ethical and social implications of each disease. (F)

MCB C61: Brain, Mind, and Behavior (3 units; Syllabus) (Also listed as MCB 61, W61)
Students receive no credit for MCB C61 after completing MCB C100A, 102, 110, 130A, 136, 140, C160, or NeuroSci C160.
Introduction to human brain mechanisms of sensation, movement, perception, thinking, learning, memory, and emotion in terms of anatomy, physiology, and chemistry of the nervous system in health and disease. Intended for students in the humanities and social sciences and others not majoring in the biological sciences. (SP) Presti

MCB C62: Drugs and the Brain (3 units; Syllabus) (Also listed as MCB 62, L&S C30T, Psych C19)
Students will receive no credit for C62 after taking 100, C100A, 104, 136, 160, C160, IB 132, or Chem C130.
The history, chemical nature, botanical origins, and effects on the human brain and behavior of drugs such as stimulants, depressants, psychedelics, analgesics, antidepressants, antipsychotics, steroids, and other psychoactive substances of both natural and synthetic origin. The necessary biological, chemical, and psychological background material for understanding the content of this course will be contained within the course itself. Also listed as Letters and Science C30T. (F)

MCB 64: Exploring the Brain: Introduction to Neuroscience. (3 units; Syllabus)   
Students will receive no credit for 64 after taking C61, C100A, 102, 104, 110, 130A, 132, 136, C160, Chem C130 or NeuroSci C160.
Prerequisites: High school chemistry or Chemistry 1A; high school biology or Biology 1A.This course will introduce lower division undergraduates to the fundamentals of neuroscience. The first part of the course covers basic membrane properties, synapses, action potentials, chemical and electrical synaptic interactions, receptor potentials, and receptor proteins. The second part of the course covers networks in invertebrates, memory and learning behavior, modulation, vertebrate brain and spinal cord, retina, visual cortex architecture, hierarchy, development, and higher cortical centers. (F)

MCB C96: Studying the Biological Sciences. (1 unit; Syllabus)
Two hours of lecture per week. Must be taken on a passed/not passed basis. Prerequisites: Consent of instructor. Freshmen will be introduced to the "culture" of the biological sciences, along with an in-depth orientation to the academic life and the culture of the university as they relate to majoring in biology. Students will learn concepts, skills, and information that they can use in their major course, and as future science professionals. Restricted to freshmen in the biology scholars program. Also listed as Plant and Microbial Biology C96 and Integrative Biology C96. (F) Matsui