If you consider yourself a person with a passion for natural sciences, curious about the chemical composition of the living beings that surround us, but above all for understanding how the world works from a scientific perspective, the Biochemistry Degree is for you. We invite you to see what the career is about and learn about the work environment in which you could work.
In this brief guide, we’re going to answer the question “Is biochemistry a good major?’’ We will describe the profile of a biochemistry student and possible job opportunities.
Is biochemistry a good major?
Yes, biochemistry is a good major. A major in biochemistry requires having a curious mind and being interested in studying life and chemical processes.
Biochemistry students gain rigorous study that includes basic and introductory courses in biology and chemistry as well as advanced courses exploring topics such as cell biology, microbiology, and genetics.
Biochemists majors study the chemistry of life. They investigate the processes of life on a molecular level and use their knowledge to identify and solve biological problems. They research and develop new products and processes for application to a wide range of areas, including food processing, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, and agriculture.
What does the Biochemistry Major consist of?
Biochemistry is the science that studies and examines the chemical structure of all living organisms. It can be applied in various areas of study, such as medicine, agriculture, genetics, and molecular biology.
The Biochemistry Major trains professionals with extensive theoretical and practical training through work experiences in laboratories. It’s a discipline that encompasses the physical-chemical laws and the biological transformation that influences biosystems and their members.
As a graduate of the Biochemistry Major, you will have acquired the ability to:
- Design and carry out clinical analyzes and other specifications related to the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of human disease.
- Carry out the design and interpretation of toxicological, bromatological, forensic, and legal chemistry, or molecular biology tests.
- To technically direct the laboratories that operate biological material, to act in the regulations and in the preparation of standardization guidelines for reagents, raw materials, and homologation of methods used to carry out the analyzes.
- Contribute to scientific knowledge efficiently and ethically.
Profile of the student of the Biochemistry Major
The student of the Biochemistry Career is a professional trained to fulfill preventive, care, educational, research, and development functions in both public and private institutions.
Students of the Major in Biochemistry will be trained to:
- Cover current and future professional needs.
- Develop scientific research in the area of animal and plant biochemistry.
- Actively participate in the production process.
- Make improvements to the treatment of agricultural products and animal husbandry.
Where does a biochemist work?
Biochemistry involves the study of the basic processes of life, for example, the way DNA is transferred between cells and how it can be manipulated to solve problems. Biochemists work with all kinds of organisms, from microorganisms to plants and animals.
Biochemical techniques are very important to almost all areas of biological research, so biochemists are involved in all areas of modern biology.
In industry, they develop new biochemical products, and monitor the production process, guaranteeing their safety and quality. They work in a wide range of industries, especially food, pharmaceutical, beverage, and other biotechnology and agrochemical companies.
Biochemists working in biotech companies, for example, develop genetic techniques to apply them to the production of essential proteins and hormones, such as insulin, a chemical deficient in people with diabetes.
Biochemists create vaccines and antibodies and investigate how DNA can be manipulated as a resource to treat genetic disorders. Biochemists have also developed DNA fingerprinting techniques for application in forensic science.
In the early days of pharmaceutical research projects, biochemists study how a disease develops and spreads. The results help decide the biological properties and chemical structure that the future drug should have.
Biochemists also help decide what form a drug should take when marketed as a medicine, for example in pill, injection, or lotion form.
Research on a new drug involves routine experimental tests, first performed on cells in a test tube or culture, in a petri dish (in vitro), and then tested on animals and human volunteers.
Generally, clinical biochemists work in hospitals, analyzing tissues and body fluids, to aid in the diagnosis of disease.
Diseases cause changes in the complex biochemistry of the body, so biochemists can detect diseases by analyzing the concentration of certain substances in body fluids and tissues. For example, glucose levels increase in patients with diabetes mellitus, while patients with kidney disease show increased urea.
A typical general hospital performs more than a million biochemical tests per year, for which clinical biochemists use highly sophisticated automated machines that can analyze up to a thousand samples per hour (for example, sodium, glucose, and urea in the blood).
In contrast, identifying an unknown drug extracted from an overdose may require time-consuming and laborious work, with manual testing and the use of a wide range of laboratory techniques and technologies.
Clinical biochemists are also involved in the research and development of new analytical techniques, often working in partnership with industry professionals or university researchers.
Biochemists specializing in agricultural research and the agrochemical industry contribute to the development of products such as pesticides and fertilizers.
They apply their knowledge of genetic modification to develop pest-resistant crops, to improve crop yields, and to increase the amount of time food stays fresh.
Other biochemists are specializing in the environment, who is in charge, for example, of detecting pollutants in food chains.
Informatics and bioinformatics
Many biochemists know bioinformatics, that is, they apply information technologies (such as the internet or databases) to biology.
For example, there are databases on the internet that contain the complete genome sequence of different bacteria. Biochemists can use this information to analyze the similarity of one bacteria to another.
Other areas of expertise
Biochemists can also work in many other areas, including education, medical writing, journalism, marketing, and industry product sales.
9 signs that indicate that you should study a biochemistry major
- Being nerdy: According to one of them defined, being nerdy is one of the inevitable qualities that you should have to study Biochemistry. If you obsess over different subjects that are boring to most people or are like an encyclopedia on legs, your personality is akin to this career.
- Lover of science in general: It’s simple, you have to like to know more about the different scientific processes that happen, either in your body or the product of an experiment. You’ll be involved with science, it’s impossible not to catch your attention if you want to study this.
- Curious by nature: You like to understand how the world works from a scientific perspective. For you, explanations based on assumptions do not carry any weight like biology, physics, and/or chemistry present in daily life.
- You’d rather be alone than working with people: It’s not that you don’t care about people, but that it’s much more comfortable for you to work alone. You likely feel that people hinder your work or you don’t know how they’ll respond to certain stimuli. On the other hand, in the laboratory, you know what to expect from certain chemical reactions, etc. This point is at your discretion
- Altruism: Even if you don’t like working with people, you do want to produce something to contribute to society. Some cure for a disease or a fantastic product that is inexpensive and useful for everyone are some of the ideas that haunt your mind.
- God Complex: You believe that science grants you a privileged position compared to other human beings, therefore you believe that you can make and unmake the existence of different things as if nothing happened.
- The illusion of wearing an apron and working in laboratories: The idea of being in a laboratory excites you more than any other job.
- Perform experiments: You’re one of those who is experimenting through life. But speaking of real experiments, you enjoy checking laws and observing their effects.
- Be methodical: Even when you explain an everyday situation, you do it step by step. This is a quality that helps you a lot if you want to study Biochemistry since it allows you to keep order when performing exercises or experiments.
If you think that your behavior is related to several points on this list, you should prepare and learn more to enter to study Biochemistry and you will finally feel comfortable with people who feel similar to you.
So, Why study a biochemistry major?
Biochemistry has established itself as a fundamental discipline to solve current and future diseases and problems.
Biochemistry is the science that examines the chemical structure of living organisms, especially carbohydrates, lipids, nucleic acids, and proteins, including other tiny particles existing in cells and the chemical reactions that these compounds undergo (metabolism) that They enable them to obtain energy (catabolism) and produce corresponding biomolecules (anabolism).
The notion of biochemistry is based on the fact that every living being includes carbon and, in general, biological molecules are mainly combined with hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, sulfur, and phosphorus.
Biochemistry is a science that approximates the investigation of biosystems and biomolecules. It’s a scientific discipline that encompasses the physical-chemical laws and the biological transformation that influences biosystems and their members.
The purpose of this major is to train a competent professional for the design, implementation, clinical analysis, and other specifications related to the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of human diseases
Carry out the design and interpretation of toxicological, bromatological, forensic, and legal chemistry, or molecular biology examinations
Technically direct the laboratories that operate biological material, to act in the regulations and in the preparation of standardization guidelines for reagents, raw materials and homologation of methods used in carrying out the analyzes; contribute to scientific knowledge efficiently and ethically.
FAQSs: Is biochemistry a good major?
Is biochemistry in high demand?
According to CareerExplorer biochemistry, it is a career with not very high demand, so job opportunities are weak, however, an increase of 6% is expected between 2020 and 2030.
What does a biochemist do in a hospital?
Clinical biochemists play an essential role in the diagnosis and monitoring of patients. The clinical biochemist must first be a trusted and respected analyst who provides his or her results as quickly as required by the patient’s clinical status and suspected diagnosis.
What are the benefits of studying biochemistry?
During your studies, you’ll acquire a wide variety of knowledge that will allow you to get involved in other disciplines in case you do not find the desired exit within Biochemistry. Although not in all areas, most of your knowledge as a Biochemist will serve you anywhere in the world where you want to reside.
What skills does a biochemist need?
Be curious and have a restless mind.
Have skills for logical thinking.
Have a thorough, patient, and methodical approach to work.
Have good organizational skills to plan and carry out experiments.
Have practical laboratory skills.
Have observation skills, precision, and attention to detail.
Have skills in mathematics, statistics, and computers.
Have the ability to present the results clearly and concisely, including the writing of reports.
Have skills for teamwork.
How difficult is biochemistry?
Studying biochemistry requires a lot of study time. Biochemistry is not as difficult as it sounds, if you are passionate about it it will become an extremely amazing course.
In this brief guide, we answered the question “Is biochemistry a good major?’’ We described the profile of a biochemistry student and possible job opportunities.
So, are you going to study a biochemistry major?
If you have any questions or comments please let us know.
Bratcher, E. H. (2020). What You Need to Know About Becoming a Biochemistry Major. Retrieved October 13, 2020, from US News & World Report website: https://www.usnews.com/education/best-colleges/biochemistry-major-overview#:~:text=Those%20considering%20a%20biochemistry%20major,studying%20life%20and%20chemical%20processes.&text=This%20major%20is%20an%20especially,biochemistry%20major%20combines%20them%20both.
What can you do with a biochemistry degree – College Learners. (2020, May 10). Retrieved October 13, 2020, from College Learners website: https://collegelearners.com/is-biochemistry-a-good-career/