Fall 2021 - MBB 420 D100

Selected Topics in Contemporary Biochemistry (3)

SARS-CoV-2 Pathogenesis and Immunity

Class Number: 4346

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 8 – Dec 7, 2021: Wed, 2:30–4:20 p.m.

    Sep 8 – Dec 7, 2021: Fri, 2:30–4:20 p.m.

  • Prerequisites:

    Will be announced before the start of the term and will depend upon the nature of the topic offered.



The topics in this course will vary from term to term, depending on faculty availability and student interest.


Special Topic: SARS-CoV-2 Pathogenesis and Immunity


This course will explore our current scientific understanding of SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19, including mechanisms of viral transmission and pathogenesis; evolution; and the human immune response to infection and vaccines.  Course readings selected from the primary literature will introduce advanced topics in molecular and cellular biology related to the study of virology and immunology.


Topics include:


  • Coronavirus structure and genome organization
  • Viral replication cycle
  • Pathology and pathogenesis
  • Epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 and related viruses
  • Host immune responses
  • Viral evasion of immunity
  • Vaccines and vaccine strategies
  • Novel immune and drug therapies


  • Exam #1 20%
  • Exam #2 20%
  • Written summaries 20%
  • Final Project 40%


This course is in person.



MBB331 with a minimum grade of C.
Completion of MBB326 is recommended prior to enrolling in this course.

Department Undergraduate Notes:

  • For help with writing, learning and study strategies please contact the Student Learning Commons at
  • Students requiring accommodations as a result of a disability, must contact the Centre for Accessible Learning (778-782-3112 or e-mail:  caladmin@sfu.ca)

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in fall 2021 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with approximately 70 to 80 per cent of classes in person/on campus, with safety plans in place.  Whether your course will be in-person or through remote methods will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the fall 2021 term.