Nutrition and Metabolism

Course Information

These course outlines are a guide only. They are provided for the information of prospective students. Although every effort is made to ensure the most up to date information is provided, timetables often change each semester due to the availability of rooms and resources. Content (including lecture/practical topics, assessment and textbooks) is also regularly reviewed to ensure relevance and effective learning.

Unit of Study Overview

Nutrition is a multidisciplinary science that covers the role of food in health and disease. Advances in the fields of molecular biology and biochemistry have increased the focus of nutrition on metabolism and metabolic pathways that transform nutrients. This unit of study aims to explore core concepts of nutrition and metabolism. The focus will be the biochemical reactions that take place in cells, how these are influenced by different nutrients and what are the implications for the whole body. This unit of study will consider the structure and chemical characteristics of nutrients, their metabolism, and their roles in health and disease.

Course Coordinator Contact Details

Dr Kim Bell-Anderson

Room: 474

Telephone: 9351 6267

Fax: 9351 6022



(MBLG1001 or MBLG1901) and (MBLG2071 or MBLG2971) and (BCHM2072 or BCHM2972). For BMedSc students: (MBLG2071 or MBLG2971) and 18 credit points of BMED units of study, including BMED2401 and BMED2405) or (BMED2801 and BMED2802 and BMED2804)

Assumed Knowledge: Intermediate level biochemistry/molecular biology and physiology. Students are strongly advised to complete NUTM3001 before enrolling in NUTM3002 in Semester 2.


Lectures: 1-2pm Tuesdays, 9-10am Thursdays

Tutorials: 1-2pm Wednesdays

Practical Classes: 11am-4pm every second Friday

Lecture Outlines

Core concepts of nutrition
- Introduction (Flux; balance; turnover; metabolic pools)
- Research tools (animals models, cell culture, human trials)

Integration of metabolism: Energy
- Whole body energy metabolism
- Body composition

Control of food intake
- Theories of control, neuroscience of food intake
- Psychosocial factors, implications for body weight management

Metabolism through the lifecycle: Pregnancy and lactation
- Physiological stages and nutritional demands
- Regulation of milk production

Metabolism through the lifecycle: Growth and aging
- Nutritional factors affecting growth and development
- Aging

- Carotenoids, phytosterols
- Phenolic phytochemicals

- Water soluble vitamins
- Fat soluble vitamins
- Minerals

- Pathological syndromes and consequences of obesity

- Adaptation and chronic energy deficiency

Exercise performance
- Macronutrients and physical activity, effects on protein requirements
- Weight maintenance and other body weight issues

Practical Classes

Determination of Glycemic Index and Insulin Action (2 practical classes)

Euglycaemic-hyperinsulinemic clamp

Nutrient tracking in vivo

Calcium ATPase


1. Introduction to Human Nutrition 2nd Edition 2009. Edited on behalf of the Nutrition Society (UK) by Michael Gibney, Susan Lanham-New, Aedin Cassidy, Hester Vorster. Wiley-Blackwell West Sussex UK. ISBN: 978-1-4051-6807-6.

2. Nutrition and Metabolism 2003. Edited on behalf of The Nutrition Society (UK) by Michael Gibney, Ian Macdonald and Helen Roche. Blackwell Science Oxford UK. ISBN:0-632-05625-8.

Advanced text:
3. Metabolic Regulation: A Human Perspective 3rd Edition 2010. Keith Frayn. Wiley-Blackwell West Sussex UK. ISBN: 978-1-4051-8359-8.


One 3hr exam, practical-related tasks eg. laboratory report & notebook, and critical review of journal article