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Academics Academics > Majors & Minors



Janet Kirkley

Professor & Chair of Biochemistry

2 East South Street

Galesburg, IL 61401-4999



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Major, Minor

The field of biochemistry is one of the most vital and dynamic of the sciences. Understanding biological processes at the molecular level allows for greater insights into life itself, as well as cutting-edge disease therapies and prevention.

Knox's biochemistry major is a well-rounded program that covers biochemistry and cell and molecular biology. It's the major of choice for a wide variety of careers, especially if you are interested in biomedical research and health care.

The biochemistry major consists of four core courses taken after pre-requisite study in biology and chemistry. For the required elective, students have a wide range of choice, including courses in immunology, molecular medicine, pharmacology, biological spectroscopy, and proteins and enzymes. They may also take selected courses in biology or chemistry.

Each segment of the curriculum is developed broadly, while progressively teaching you the skills needed for in-depth work. Finally, in senior-level research, you develop a project proposal that connects to a faculty member's current research efforts, assemble the appropriate materials, conduct the research, and produce a final report

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The biochemistry program is located in the Sharvy Umbeck Science-Mathematics Center. Scientific equipment is housed in several special research centers, as well as in individual faculty members' laboratories. Facilities include:

  • Center for Microscopy- fluorescent microscopes with digital image capture, transmission and scanning electron microscopes, video/Normarski microscope, darkroom and accessories
  • Center for Tissue Culture-Class II A/B3 biological safety cabinet, water-jacketed CO2 incubators 
  • Nuclear and electronic spin resonance spectrometers (NMR/ESR)
  • Gas chromatograph/mass spectrometer (GCMS) and X-ray spectrometer
  • Waters high performance liquid chromatograph (HPLC)
  • FPLC protein purification system
  • Molecular Biology Center instrumentation for cloning, polymerase chain reaction, and Northern and Western blotting
  • Image Analysis Center-Bio-Rad Fluor-S MultiImager
  • Center for Spectroscopy- circular dichroism, laser, polarimetric and stopped-flow CD

The Kresge Science-Mathematics Library provides easy access to 30,000 books and scientific journals, including more than 70 journals in biology and chemistry alone, that supplement the College's main collection of more than 281,000 volumes in Seymour Library.

Knox College

Printed on Wednesday, May 25, 2016

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