Departments

Each of the basic science departments within the Division offer discipline specific degree programs either through the College of Arts and Science for undergraduate B.Sc. degree programs, or through the College of Graduate Studies and Research for graduate work.

A route for students interested in pursuing B.Sc. Degrees in the life sciences and/or careers in health care professions

The basic science undergraduate B.Sc. degree programs offered stem from a common core platform of biomedical science courses. Visit the Common Core page for what to take in year one and two. Prior to registration in third year, students choose to major in Anatomy & Cell Biology, Biochemistry, Microbiology & Immunology or Physiology-Pharmacology.

In addition to teaching in programs for the Division, Faculty members also provide teaching services to undergraduate medical students, as well as other health professional and science students, and to those who require educational modules within the biomedical sciences. Research activities encompass major themes including Biomedical Imaging of Structure & Function using synchrotron-based approaches, Cardiovascular Research, Cell Cycle/Cancer, Immunology, Infectious Disease, Neuroscience, Metabolic Regulation & Diabetes, and Structural Biology. Wherever possible, efforts are continuously made to develop collaborations with clinician scientists.

BMSC Common Core Platform

The Division of Biomedical Sciences was created within the College of Medicine to provide governance and administrative structure for the five Basic Science Departments of Anatomy & Cell Biology, Biochemistry, Microbiology & Immunology, Pharmacology and Physiology. The Division adheres to the by-laws of the College of Medicine, but is independent in governance with respect to budget and Faculty complement.

The mandates of the Division include both teaching and research activities. We provide educational programming to undergraduate medical students as well as other health professional and science students; students in basic science B.Sc. programs and others who require educational modules in the biomedical sciences; and Graduate Student and Post-Doctoral Fellow training. All of the Divisional Departments offer B.Sc. degree programs in Anatomy and Cell Biology, Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology, and Physiology/Pharmacology through the Collge of Arts and Science. These B.Sc. programs share a common Biomedical Sciences (BMSC) core platform in years 1 and 2 that provide our students with a strong educational experience in the life sciences as preparation for all Health Science disciplines. The Division also offers assistance in resident training through refresher courses and assists with continuing professional learning; and cooperates with and assists the School of Physical Therapy in the offering of the Masters of Physical Therapy program.

Research activities include investigation in the biomedical sciences and development of collaborations with clinician scientists. Major research themes incorporate Biomedical Imaging of Structure & Function using synchrotron-based approaches, Cardiovascular Research, Cell Cycle/Cancer Immunology, Infectious Disease, Neuroscience, Metabolic Regulation & Diabetes, and Structural Biology.

The mission, vision, values and goals of the Division of Biomedical Sciences, College of Medicine are interconnected with those of the Colleges of Arts & Science, Graduate Studies & Research and the University of Saskatchewan. All support and reinforce the themes of providing quality education to the people of Saskatchewan and beyond.


There are five Departments within the Division of Biomedical Sciences that offer 3-year, 4-year, and Honours B.Sc. degree programs in:

  • Anatomy and Cell Biology (ACB)
  • Biochemistry (BIOC)
  • Microbiology & Immunology (MCIM)
  • Physiology and Pharmacology (PHPY)

These programs follow a “common core platform” of courses during Years 1 and 2. This common Year 1 and 2 course platform provides students with an educational foundation and skill set in the various biomedical sciences disciplines that enables them make an informed choice as to which specific degree major (ACB, BIOC, MCIM or PHPY) they wish to pursue as they progress into Years 3 and 4 of their B.Sc. program.

We are Biomedical Sciences

First Year of Study

Term One
Term Two
BIOL 120.3** BMSC 200.3**
CHEM 112.3** CHEM 115.3**
PHYS 115.3** PHYS 117.3**
MATH 125.3** 3 cu Other Type C*
3 cu Other Type C* 3 cu Other Type C*

Second Year of Study

Term One Term Two
BMSC 220.3** BMSC 210.3**
BMSC /BIOL 224.3** BMSC 230.3**
CHEM 250.3** BMSC 240.3**
3 cu Other Type C* PLSC 314.3**
3 cu Other Type C* 3 cu Other Type C*

* Suggested Type C Requirements chosen in the first two years include but are not limited to 100-level English, Psychology, Sociology, Economics, Archeology, Anthropology, History; PHIL 120.3, 133.3, 234.3. For a complete list of Type C Requirements consult the current University of Saskatchewan course calendar athttp://www.usask.ca/calendar/

**See course desciptions in next section.

The Division of Biomedical Sciences Common Core Platform Courses

BIOL 120.3

The Nature of Life

An introduction to the underlying fundamental aspects of living systems: covering cell biology, genetics and the evolutionary processes which lead to complex, multi-cellular life forms.

CHEM 112.3

General Chemistry I

Structure, bonding and properties of materials. Topics include atoms and molecules, bonding, molecular structure, intermolecular forces, states of matter, and properties of materials. The laboratory illustrates material covered in the lectures.

CHEM 115.3

General Chemistry II

Chemical reactions, including the rates and energetics of reactions and specific types of reactions. Topics include stoichiometry, chemical reactions, chemical kinetics, equilibrium, specific reactions, and thermodynamics.

CHEM 250.3

Introduction to Organic Chemistry

An introduction to organic chemistry; students will learn to name organic compounds, predict some of the properties and reactivity of compounds based on molecular structure, and grasp the importance of these concepts and their application to all sciences and life in general. Almost all the reactions in living matter involve organic compounds, and it is impossible to understand the molecular processes of living systems without knowing organic chemistry. CHEM 250.3 is intended as a basis for other courses, and a beginning for understanding organic and bio-organic chemistry. The laboratory will introduce students to basic chemical laboratory skills frequently used in organic chemistry.

MATH 125.3

Mathematics for the Life Sciences

An introduction to mathematical modeling with a focus on applications to the life sciences. Topics include: algebraic functions and their graphs, limits and rates of change, differentiation techniques and applications, exponential and logarithmic functions, integration and the area under a curve, introduction to differential equations. The main feature of this course is the use of structured examples from life sciences to establish a need for mathematical techniques. Necessary mathematical terms and concepts will be developed. The emphasis throughout this course is on applications of mathematics to life sciences with just enough theory to support applications. Extensive examples from Biology, Health, Chemistry and Physics will be used.

PHYS 115.3

Physics and the Universe

Provides the first part of an introduction to physics. Emphasis is placed on mechanics, electric and magnetic fields, electric currents and circuits, and the physics of atoms and particles. The course concludes with a discussion of our current understanding of the history of the universe and a discussion of the frontiers of our current understanding of the physical world. Some applications of physics in technology and the health sciences are also discussed.

PHYS 117.3

Physics for the Life Sciences

Introduces students to aspects of physics which are of particular relevance for the health and life sciences. This course can be used as the second part of an introduction to physics. Topics include torque and angular momentum, fluid mechanics, oscillations and waves, thermal physics, optics, and nuclear physics. Emphasis is placed on bio-medical applications of physics.

PLSC 314.3

Statistical Methods

An introduction to statistical methods and their application to experiments. Includes probability, means and variances, "t" tests, analysis of variance, experimental designs, simple regression and correlation, and chi-square tests. Designed for students in the biological sciences.

BMSC 200.3

Biomolecules

An introduction to the structures, general properties, and functions of simple and complex biomolecules: amino acids, peptides, proteins, enzymes, carbohydrates, lipids and nucleic acids as well as membranes and solute transport.

BMSC 210.3

Microbiology

An introduction to the structure, physiology, genetics and pathogenicity of microorganisms. Topics include the structure and composition of bacteria and viruses, bacterial growth, genetics, and regulation, the role of microorganisms in disease, and an introduction to the immune system.

BMSC 220.3

Eukaryotic Cell Biology

An introduction to the biology of eukaryotic cells. Topics include organization of eukaryotic chromosomes; the flow of genetic information from nucleus to cytoplasm; cellular membranes and organelles; control of cell division; and signaling between cells. Contrasts between eukaryotic cells and prokaryotic microbial cells will be discussed, as well as distinctions between plant and animal cells.

BMSC 224.3

Animal Body Systems

This course will study the problems all animals have to overcome in order to survive and reproduce, and the different body systems that must deal with both unique and common environmental challenges.

BMSC 230.3

 

Metabolism

An introduction to the thermodynamic aspects of energy metabolism and the principles of anabolic and catabolic metabolic pathways. Emphasis will be placed on the overall purpose of the major pathways, the precursor molecules leading into these pathways, the important pathway products and the basic types of control that regulate metabolic flux. Examples in prokaryotic systems will be provided where possible.

BMSC 240.3

Laboratory Techniques

This laboratory course provides an introduction to the theory and application of basic techniques in biochemistry, cell biology and microbiology which will serve as a foundation for upper year specialization courses.

Divisional Seminar Series

About the Divisional Seminar Series

In order to celebrate accomplishments and bring in speakers presenting topics of general interest to the Biomedical Sciences, the Division has decided to present a Divisional Seminar.

Each Department of the Division is urged to bring forward speakers that they think will present topics that will bring many people together.

Previously Presented

Date of Seminar Speaker Home University Title of Talk Host Department
March 26, 2015 Dr. David Edgell University of Western Ontario Microbiology & Immunology
November 21, 2013 Dr. Terry Machen University of California, Berkeley Pseudomonas aeruginosa activation of innate immune defense, including Cl secretion, in airway epithelial cells Physiology
November 13, 2013 Dr. Anne Rose University of British Columbia Helicases in DNA Repair: Insights from C. elegans Biochemistry
September 18, 2013 Dr. E. Shoubridge McGill Posttranscriptional regulation of mitochondrial gene expression Biochemistry
November 8, 2012 Dr. George Chaconas University of Calgary Molecular Biology of the Lyme Disease Spirochete Microbiology & Immunology
October 25, 2012 Dr. Lance Nash American University of the Caribbean The Deep Cervical Fascia: The use of E12 Plastination & Confocal Microscopy Anatomy and Cell Biology
September 12, 2012 Dr. Emanuel Strehler Mayo Clinic Second Messenger Systems in Cellular Signaling Pharmacology
June 1, 2012 Dr. Naweed Syed University of Calgary Trophic factor induced synapse formation and synaptic plasticity: From Growth cones to neuro-chips Anatomy and Cell Biology
May 11, 2012 Dr. Ross MacGillivray University of British Columbia Functional Characterization of the Human Multi-Copper Oxidase Hephaestin Biochemistry
April 2, 2012 Dr. Rodrigo Lacruz University of Southern California

Tooth enamel mineralization: New signaling pathways & their impacts on human health

Anatomy and Cell Biology
April 10, 2012 Dr. Tanya Smith Harvard University & Peabody Museum

Biological rhythms in teeth reveal clues into human evolution

Anatomy and Cell Biology
March 15, 2012 Dr. Stan Floresco University of British Columbia Dopaminergic circuits underlying risk-based decision making Physiology
February 9, 2012 Dr. David Haniford University of Western Ontario Regulation of bacterial transposition systems by Hfq Microbiology & Immunology
October 24, 2011 Dr. Neil Cashman University of British Columbia Protein Misfolding-Specific Targets for Neurodegenerative Diseases Pharmacology
September 15, 2011 Dr. David Morgan University of California, San Francisco, CA Control of Chromosome Segregation in Mitosis Anatomy and Cell Biology
July 21, 2011 Dr. Max J. Scott North Carolina State University

The Drosophila Male Specific Lethal RNA-protein complex:chromosome binding, evolution and transcription regulation

Biochemistry
April 14, 2011 Dr. Redwan Moqbel University of Manitoba Do Tryptophan Catabolites (kynurenines) and Glutamate Have a Role in Th1 and Th2 Apoptosis and Survival Microbiology & Immunology
March 31, 2011 Dr. Tom Hobman University of Alberta

RNA virus capsid proteins: Forcing suicidal cells to live

Microbiology & Immunology
March 10, 2011 Dr. Abigail Salyers University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign The Human Intestinal Tract: a Hotbed of Antibiotic Resistance Gene Transfer Microbiology & Immunology
March 3, 2011 Dr. Huidi Wang Brock University Adventitia in Vascular Function Pharmacology
February 9, 2011 Dr. John Rubinstein University of Toronto Electron Cryomicroscopy of ATP Synthase and V-type ATPases Biochemistry
January 19, 2011 Dr. Richard Lehner University of Alberta Role of CES3/TGS in Lipid Storage and Secretion Biochemistry
November 30, 2010 Dr. Paul Fernyhough University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Adult Peripheral Neurons in Diabetes Physiology
April 20, 2010 Dr. Peter A. Smith University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta BDNF and Central Sensitization in Neurpathic Pain Anatomy & Cell Biology