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CODE 65521
  • 8 cfu during the 1st year of 8762 SCIENZE BIOLOGICHE (L-13) - GENOVA
    LANGUAGE Italian
  • SEMESTER 2° Semester
    Prerequisites (for future units)
    This unit is a prerequisite for:
    • Biological Sciences 8762 (coorte 2022/2023)


    General Chemistry and Lab (CHGEN, code 65521) it has weight 8 credits (6 CFU lectureres, 2 CFU laboratory activities ) and takes place in the second semester, years: 1 ° LT SB. Lessons are held in Italian.
    For enrolled students, the teaching material is available on AulaWeb.



     The General and Inorganic Chemistry is for the biologist a fundamental basic training course which provides students  the information necessary to understand the processes that occur in specialized areas such as biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics and physiology and the principles of the physical and chemical analytical methods necessary to follow subsequent courses such as Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry. The skills  supplied to the student will enable them to   transfer the basic concepts learned in the course of General and Inorganic Chemistry to the interpretation of the various biological processes.


    The student will acquire information to understand processes that occur in specialized fields such as biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics, physiology; but also fundamental principles and methodologies foundamental to be able to profitably follow the teachings of the following years such as organic chemistry and biochemistry.

    The student will develop the ability to transfer the basic concepts learned in the course of general and inorganic chemistry to the interpretation of various biological processes.

    The laboratory module aims to provide the experimental verification of concepts acquired during the course, by linking together different aspects of the theoretical part, using electrochemical methods and qualitative and quantitative chemical analysis.


    The teaching consists of lectures and laboratory activities. Since activities are carried out for the application of the acquired knowledge, practical and methodological activities, the frequency of lectures  is strongly recommended.

    The laboratory exercises are aimed at the experimental verification of the theoretical subjects acquired during the lectures. Exercises in the laboratory, individual report and final discussion with the teacher.


    Introductory general concepts - physical and chemical phenomena - homogeneous and heterogeneous systems - Historical Note on the fundamental laws of chemistry - atom and molecule - Atomic weight - scale of atomic weights - Determination of atomic weights - Atomic number - Isotopes - Molecular weight and weight formula - Avogadro's number - Mole - Extension of the mole concept - formula minimum - molecular formula - Meaning amount of a formula.

    chemical systematic - Oxidation number, formulas and nomenclature of the main classes of inorganic compounds: oxides, hydrides, bases, acids and salts.

    Atomic structure - Fundamental Constituents of the atom - Bohr's atomic model and quantum theory - Energy levels - quantum numbers - the Pauli exclusion principle - Wave Theory - Atomic orbitals and their representation - Principle of Hund - Periodic and electronic configuration - periodic law and periodicity of chemical properties.

    Chemical bond - General concepts - ionization potential - Electronic Affinity - Ionic bond - Covalent bond - Electronegativity- Resonance Theory VSEPR - hydrogen bond - Notes on the metallic bonding - Types of solids - ionic solids and typical ionic lattices .

    Inorganic Chemistry - Periodic table of the elements - Changes in property along the periods and groups - chemical properties of the elements in relation to their structure electronically description of the general properties of the elements and their main compounds.

    Chemical reactions - General and classification of chemical reactions - the quantity of the chemical reactions Meaning - stoichiometric calculations - Redox reactions and dismutation - Reactions in ionic form.

    Thermodynamics - internal energy, enthalpy, entropy, free energy. equilibrium conditions, Elements of chemical kinetics, thermodynamic and kinetic aspect of chemical reactions.

    Homogeneous and heterogeneous equilibria-equilibrium constant - Factors affecting the balance and equilibrium shift - Le Chatelier's principle - Van't Hoff equation.

    Liquid state - Outline of the liquid properties - Vapour pressure - Boiling point - Equation Clausius -Clapeyron.

    Equilibria in aqueous solution - Definition of solution: types of solutions and solubilization - Sizes mechanisms that express the concentration of a solution. Ionic product of water - pH, acids and pOH-  Theories of Arrhenius, Bronsted and Lowry, Lewis.- Strength of acids and bases Acids and Bases poliprotici- Electrolytes anfoteri- pH calculation of strong acid solutions , strong bases, weak acids, weak bases-  pH Indicators- Hydrolysis and calculation of idrolisi  and  buffer solutions pH-  pH buffer systems in the blood- heterogeneous equilibria in aqueous solution- solubility product and its applications- relationship between solubility product and of solubility- Effect of temperature and to the common ion on solubility.

    One component phase diagrams - Definition and generalities  - Water phase diagram .

    -Raoult law - Mixtures of liquids which follow Raoult's Law - Deviations of the law of Raoult- colligative properties of solutions - Variations of the vapor pressure, the boiling temperature, solidification  of the solvent and freeze - Methods cryoscopic and ebullioscopic for the determination of the molecular weights - osmotic pressure and its measurement - Law of Vant'Hoff - determination of the molecular weight by osmotic pressure measurements - Solubility of gases in liquids: Henry's Law.

    electrolyte solutions - Dissociation - Degree of dissociazione- Activities and activity coefficients colligative properties of electrolyte solutions.

    Elettrochemistry- electrode potentials, batteries, electrolysis - Basic concepts in electrochemistry: general information on the electrode potentials and the reversible chemical cells, derived thermodynamic equation of Nernst, Daniell cell, the electromotive force of the battery, potential standards and their use for the prediction of possibilities reaction and for the calculation of the equilibrium constant of oxide reduction reactions. 


    Experimental verification of some of General Chemistry concepts: chemical reactions, ionic equilibria in solution, strength of acids and bases, pH, solubility product: definition, factors affecting solubility, applications Ks in the laboratory. Volumetric quantitative analysis: fundamental concepts, titrations, definition of primary standards, construction of the titration curves for the various reactions used  titration indicators.

    Laboratory exercises:

    chemical reactions in solution: acid-base, precipitation, complexation, oxidation-reduction.

    recognition of cations reactions: NH4 +, Al3 +, Cr3 + Fe3 +, Pb2 +, Cu2 + and the anions CO32-, C2H3O2-, SO42-, Cl-, identification by means of the emission spectrum to the flame of the elements Li, Na, K, Ca, Sr, Ba. Separation and recognition of cations in aqueous solution (Al3 +, Cr3 + Fe3 +, Cu2 +). Qualitative chemical analysis of a mixture of unknown ions. quantitative volumetric analysis: red-ox titration of a sample containing Fe2 + through a previously standardized solution of potassium permanganate with sodium oxalate.


    Recomended books

    The recommended books are available at the library of C.S.B. at the DCCI
    I.Bertini,C.Luchinat,F.Mani Chimica Casa Editrice Ambrosiana , Milano
    R.H. Petrucci, W. S. Harwood Chimica generale, Piccin, Padova.
    A.M.Manotti Lanfredi A. Tiripicchio Fondamenti di chimica Casa Editrice Ambrosiana , Milano
    P.W. Atkins “Chimica” Zanichelli
    P. Michelin Lausarot, G. A. Vaglio Fondamenti di stechiometria, Piccin , Padova
    R. Breschi, A. Massagli Stechiometria ETS, Pisa




    For lessons start and timetable go to the link:

    Please check the module Aulaweb page for timetable updates dependent on the sanitary and epidemic situation.




    The exam consists of a written test and an oral test.

    The written test can be taken at each exam call or during the semester through ongoing checks.

    The student accesses the oral exam if he has achieved at least 15/30 in the written test. The oral exam consists in answering questions asked by the teacher about topics covered during the teaching.

      The oral exam can be taken both in the same exam session and in the subsequent exam sessions published on the UNIGE website.



    The oral test is always conducted by a commission made up of at least two professors and has a reasonable duration. The Commission is able to verify with high accuracy the achieving of the learning outcomes  by placing different questions related to the program actually carried out during the  lessons.The frequency of laboratory exercises is mandatory


    The frequency of the laboratory exercitations is mandatory