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Title: Understanding the practical consequences of metabolic interactions – a software package for teaching and research
Authors: Wong, Kelvin Wai Wah
Barford, John P.
Porter, John Francis
Keywords: Education
Biochemical pathways
Issue Date: May-2004
Citation: Proceedings of the second teaching and learning symposium, Hong Kong (May 17, 2004), Senate Committee on Teaching and Learning Qaulity, and Center for Enhanced Learning and Teaching, HKUST, 2004
Abstract: METSTOICH, a metabolite balancing software package, was developed for use in teaching metabolic pathways and their interactions. Based on the metabolism of Baker's Yeast, the package has been used to examine the relationship between cell yield, cell composition, P/O ratio, and energy (ATP) utilization during cell growth. After the simulation was developed, a number of problem sets were developed which targeted particular cellular interactions. These had increasing levels of difficulty. The simulation was then trialed in the postgraduate course BIEN502 (Biochemistry for Bioengineering). Initial trials indicated that the package provides a useful supplement to traditional methods in teaching metabolism. Student evaluation of the course indicated that the simulation was considered a very useful supplement to traditional teaching methods, and that it was easy to use and to understand. The simulation was supported by a large help file which included background theory, nomenclature and the problem sets. Some minor operational faults and some suggestions by the students for further improvement were incorporated into a revised simulation. This will be trialed further in CENG565 (Environmental Biotechnology) and CENG361 (Biochemical Engineering). In addition, a supplementary grant will allow it to be trialed in Biochemistry, where the more basic biochemical details will be focused upon.
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