20349 Oxygen: Chemical and Biological Aspects

Credits: 3 advanced seminar credits in Chemistry or in Life Sciences

Prerequisites: 36 credits in the Sciences, including General Chemistry1 (or General Chemistry I + General Chemistry II, for Biology Students; or General Chemistry I + General Chemistry II), and one of the following: Organic Chemistry or Organic Chemistry for Biology Students. Students must also fulfill all English requirements and take bibliographic instruction in the Library.

Recommended: One of the following: General Biology I, Introduction to Life Sciences

The course is based on three collections of articles edited by Nava Ben-Zvi and Aryeh A. Frimer.

The course aims to acquaint the student with reactions of molecular oxygen and oxydants in organic and biological systems.

The first collection deals primarily with oxidation through triplet molecular oxygen, radical processes and hydroperoxide reactions as well as the role of oxygen in the aging process. The second addresses oxidation by singlet molecular oxygen and its operating mechanisms. The third discusses oxidation by ozone as well as biological aspects the need for ozone in nature and the problem of air pollution. Students are required to submit an assignment on each chapter, and then write a seminar paper based on additional articles in Chemistry or Biology.

Sample seminar paper topics: Auto-oxidation of PUFA study of a mechanism; Bi-carboxylic acids as products of ozonolysis of cycloalkanes; Photo-oxidation protection; delay by carotenoids; The possible role of singlet oxygen in the function of carcinogenics.


1or General Chemistry (20477 or 20487), which is no longer offered.