Fall 2018 - MBB 730 G100

Mechanisms of Secretory Transport (3)

Class Number: 3614

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 4 – Dec 3, 2018: Tue, Thu, 12:30–2:20 p.m.

  • Prerequisites:

    MBB 322 and BISC 331/MBB 331 or permission of the instructor.



Analysis of mechanisms of protein, lipid, and nucleic acid delivery and transport within cells. The course will examine processes of protein targeting, exocytosis, and endocytosis; molecular mechanisms of COP-and clathrin-mediated vesicle transport; and viral and SNARE-mediated membrane fusion. Lectures will present landmark experiments from classic papers, and student presentations will focus on recent research articles. The significance of these findings with respect to human disease and signal transduction will be considered.


Lecture Schedule:
Each week begins with an analysis of a historical “landmark paper” to introduce each topic. This discussion is followed by student seminars that present current aspects of each topic.

1.   Introductory lecture. Overview and techniques in molecular cell biology.
2.   Protein targeting, recycling and retention.
3.   Membrane structure and viral fusagens.
4.   Synaptic exocytosis, and the SNARE hypothesis.
5.   Yeast SEC genes.
6.   Yeast VPS genes.
7.   Clathrin-mediated endocytosis.
8.   Coatamer-mediated (non-clathrin) vesicular transport (COPI and COPII complexes).
9.   Caveolae and membrane rafts.
10.  Autophagy: stress-induced metabolic recycling.
11.  Nonvesicular lipid transfer & membrane contact sites.
12.  Nuclear import and export.


  • Oral presentations (2) 40%
  • Class participation 30%
  • Final term paper 30%



B. Alberts et al, Molecular Biology of the Cell, 5th Ed., 2007.

Graduate Studies Notes:

Important dates and deadlines for graduate students are found here: http://www.sfu.ca/dean-gradstudies/current/important_dates/guidelines.html. The deadline to drop a course with a 100% refund is the end of week 2. The deadline to drop with no notation on your transcript is the end of week 3.

Registrar Notes:

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