Conditions of Use
The book covers a good range of basic biology topics. Several chapters highlight clinically-relevant applications of the basic science, which should provide good preparation for students pursuing health care careers. The combined topic areas of... read more
The book covers a good range of basic biology topics. Several chapters highlight clinically-relevant applications of the basic science, which should provide good preparation for students pursuing health care careers. The combined topic areas of cell, biochemistry, and genetics relate well to each other, so it is nice to have all three areas covered in the same text. A stand-alone course in either Cell Bio, Biochemistry, or Genetics would likely need additional resources for more depth and application. However, this is a good overall introduction, and a good resource for students who are reviewing key concepts.
The content appears accurate and the figures, labels, and captions are helpful.
The book's focus on core concepts allows it to be relevant and without being likely to become obsolete. The organization is such that existing chapters could be amended or new chapters added if/ when updates are needed. Since the current text covers Sanger sequencing, a future update might also include information about next-generation sequencing technologies.
The prose is clear and concise. Key concepts are addressed without excessive detail or jargon, making for an accessible introduction or review.
The overall formatting appears consistent for the text, layout, and figures.
The book spans a range of content areas, but instructors could easily select a relevant subset of chapters for different course needs.
Within each of the three main topic areas, the chapters follow a logical order. In addition, each content area allows a reader to have a better depth of understanding of the other topics.
The navigation interface is straight-forward.
There were no significant grammatical or typographical errors.
The book is not culturally insensitive, and appears to avoid reference to potentially sensitive topics. However, some of the language in the genetics section could be updated to recognize the complexity of sex determination vs gender identity. In addition, the field of genetics is impacted by considerable cultural complexity in the relationship between genetics and identity, and in ways that genetics research in the past has been used to harm some groups. This is not addressed in the text, but awareness of these issues is likely to be important for future clinicians.
This text provides a clear, accessible overview of core concepts relevant to the field. The concise content could allow instructors to pair this text with different types of resources depending on the focus or needs of an individual course.
This textbook does a nice job giving a basic clear-cut introduction to the topics of Cell Biology, Genetics, and Biochemistry. It covers the most critical basic principals in each category. However, the book is not comprehensive in each subject... read more
This textbook does a nice job giving a basic clear-cut introduction to the topics of Cell Biology, Genetics, and Biochemistry. It covers the most critical basic principals in each category. However, the book is not comprehensive in each subject matter. The coverage is simplistic and a fair amount of material is left out. While the information is clear, there is very minimal expansion or application of the knowledge. Some definitions or explanations seem abrupt and not very thorough.
The material presented appears to be accurate. However, there is a feeling that material is missing for sufficient prep for pre-clinical students.
The information covered will be relevant for a long time as this basic knowledge rarely changes. It provides foundational knowledge than can be built upon over time. More information could be added to demonstrate relevance to topics in society.
The text is clear, but feels "dry". The correct terminology is used. The writing is clear but almost feels robotic as if facts are simply stated but there is no excitement, passion, or emotion in it. This may be good for readers who simply want the straight-up facts without any added flavor to pique interest.
The text is consistent in its style and format. However some sections are surprisingly short while others may be long.
The text is divided up into sections that can be referenced to. The sections are numbered and you could reference to headings or subheadings if needed.
The organization of the text is easy to follow. You can click on a larger topic which is divided into subtopics. It would be nice if the subtopics (weblinks) followed the same format as the first topics (click on pictured boxes).
Fairly easy to navigate without issues.
The grammar is fine.
The text does not appear to be culturally offensive, but it also doesn't seem to include any cultural references or diversity of viewpoints. It simply states scientific facts.
This is an excellent resource and overview of simple cell and molecular biology, basic genetics and a great introduction to clinically-relevant biochemistry. read more
This is an excellent resource and overview of simple cell and molecular biology, basic genetics and a great introduction to clinically-relevant biochemistry.
The content, including diagrams, appear to be accurate and well-labeled.
The current content is up-to-date, and by the nature of the material will remain relevant for the foreseeable future. The format will also allow for additional sections to be added if new information should be included.
The text is written in language that undergraduate students will find accessible, while remaining scientifically accurate. Descriptions and definitions are clearly explained throughout.
The text is consistent and makes consistent references; additionally, the diagrams are similar and consistently drawn/labeled, which makes then simple to follow and relate to other sections of the text.
Subheadings are used very well, and present easily digestible sections of content that can be assigned and addressed independently. It should be very simple to reorganize as needed for a particular course or study needs.
The three major sections (biochemistry, genetics and cell biology) are very nicely organized by subtopic, and presented in a logical and easy to understand order.
There are no issues with navigation, and all images and charts are clear. Additionally, the image text descriptions (when hovering over image) are very nice summaries of the content for readers who rely on audio information.
No grammatical errors detected.
This text is not culturally insensitive or offensive in any way. However, no reference to race other than a mention of the cystic fibrosis incidence in Caucasians. Since this text does contain correlations with clinical situations and medically-related statistics, it might be helpful to include some reference to differences that might be racially relevant when teaching students. It might also be beneficial to include gender/sex differences and age-related difference for clinical values (lipid profiles, for example) so students understand that other factors can influence the values as well as pathological states.
This in an incredible resource for any student studying cell biology, genetics and biochemistry! I would also highly recommend this as reference material for courses that expect students to have a foundation in the above topics. The clinical perspective is also very helpful and hopefully makes the material more interesting and engaging for students in pre-clinical courses.
Table of Contents
1. Biochemistry basics2. Basic laboratory measurements 3. Fed and fasted state 4. Fuel for now 5. Fuel for later 6. Lipoprotein metabolism and cholesterol synthesis 7. Pentose phosphate pathway (PPP), purine and pyrimidine metabolism 8. Amino acid metabolism and heritable disorders of degradation9. Disorders of monosaccharide metabolism and other metabolic conditions10. Genes, genomes, and DNA 11. Transcription and translation 12. Gene regulation and the cell cycle 13. Human genetics 14. Linkage studies, pedigrees, and population genetics 15. Cellular signaling 16. Plasma membrane 17. Cytoplasmic membranes 18. Cytoskeleton 19. Extracellular matrix
Ancillary MaterialSubmit ancillary resource
About the Book
Cell Biology, Genetics, and Biochemistry for Pre-Clinical Students is an undergraduate medical-level resource for foundational knowledge across the disciplines of genetics, cell biology and biochemistry. This USMLE-aligned text is designed for a course in first-year undergraduate medical course that is delivered typically before students start to explore systems physiology and pathophysiology. The text is meant to provide the essential information from these content areas in a concise format that would allow learner preparation to engage in an active classroom. Clinical correlates and additional application of content is intended to be provided in the classroom experience. The text assumes that the students will have completed medical school prerequisites (including the MCAT) in which they will have been introduced to the most fundamental concepts of biology and chemistry that are essential to understand the content presented here. This resource should be assistive to the learner later in medical school and for exam preparation given the material is presented in a succinct manner, with a focus on high-yield concepts.
The 276-page text was created specifically for use by pre-clinical students at Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and was based on faculty experience and peer review to guide development and hone important topics.
Instructors reviewing, adopting, or adapting parts or the whole of the text are requested to register their interest at: https://bit.ly/interest-preclinical.
Instructors and subject matter experts interested in and sharing their original course materials relevant to pre-clinical education are requested to join the instructor portal at https://www.oercommons.org/groups/pre-clinical-resources/10133.
Suggested Citation LeClair, Renée J., (2021). Cell Biology, Genetics, and Biochemistry for Pre-Clinical Students, Blackburg, VA: Virginia Tech Publishing. https://doi.org/10.21061/cellbio. Licensed with CC BY NC-SA 4.0.
About the Contributors
Renée J. LeClair is an Associate Professor in the Department of Basic Science Education at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, where her role is to engage activities that support the departmental mission of developing an integrated medical experience using evidence-based delivery grounded in the science of learning. She received a Ph.D. at Rice University and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the Maine Medical Center Research Institute in vascular biology. She became involved in medical education, curricular renovation, and implementation of innovative teaching methods during her first faculty appointment, at the University of New England, College of Osteopathic Medicine. In 2013, she moved to a new medical school, University of South Carolina, School of Medicine, Greenville. The opportunities afforded by joining a new program and serving as the Chair of the Curriculum committee provided a blank slate for creative curricular development and close involvement with the accreditation process. During her tenure she developed and directed a team-taught student-centered undergraduate medical course that integrated the scientific and clinical sciences to assess all six-core competencies of medical education.