Modules for course C7AA | MSC/MBB
MSc Molecular Biology with Biotechnology

These are the modules currently offered on this course in the 2019–20 academic year.

You can also view the modules offered in the years: 2018–19; 2020–21.

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Year 1 Modules

Compulsory Modules

Semester 1

  • MSE-4040: Human Molecular Genetics (20)
  • BSM-4104: Tech. of Mol Biol & Biotech. (20)
    This is a practical module designed to equip the student with expertise in standard molecular biology techniques. The course will start with training in methods designed to extract DNA and RNA from animal and plant tissues, and progress to the analysis of these nucleic acids on agarose and polyacrylamide gels. The mapping of plasmids will be covered, as will the analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms and restriction fragment length polymorphisms in the human genome. .
  • BSM-4105: Env. & Indust. Biotechnology (10)
    This module will address aspects of environmental and industrial biotechnology including Industrial microbial biotechnology, Microbial oil degradation, Degradation of chlorinated organic pollutants, Metagenomics, Metal-microbe interactions, Biomining, Acid Mine Drainage, Mineral bioprocessing and Bioremediation.

Semester 2

  • BSM-4101: Marine Biotechnology (10)
    1 The "Blue Revolution" Marine aquaculture and biotechnology, current status, future perspectives, problems and ethics. 2 "Drugs from the sea". Marine Pharmacology and potential for novel chemical leads for treatment of disease. Antibacterials, anticoagulants antifungals, anti-inflammmatory, immunosuppressants, antimitotics, neuroactive compounds. 3 Genetically modified fish: Objectives. Growth regulation by overexpression of GH (growth hormone), improved cold/freeze tolerance- Antifreeze genes, Improved disease resistance. GM sterile fish (GtH knockouts, triploids). 4 Outcomes and impacts of GM fish: Ethics, Environmental impacts, Adverse side effects on humans and fish. 5 Disease diagnosis in aquaculture. Diseases of fish, crustaceans and molluscs. Production of SPF stock. Disease diagnosis via PCR and immunochemical assays. 6 RNAi as a novel therapeutic approach to viral diseases: Prospectives and problems.
  • BSM-4103: Plant Biotechnology (10)
    This module will cover plant transformation technology in detail, including the development and use of plant transformation vectors based on the Ti plasmid. The development and use of the most widely grown transgenic crops worldwide will be studied in detail, and future transgenic crops in the "pipeline" will be examined. Plant biotechnology as applied to modern plant breeding including the use of marker assisted selection and QTL analysis will be studied with respect to abiotic stress resistance. Finally, the controversies which have arisen with respect to transgenic crops will be examined.
  • BSM-4110: Research Project (60) Core
    Projects will be offered in a number of areas including Medical Biotechnology, Plant Biotechnology, Marine Biotechnology, Systems Biology, and Environmental Biotechnology, Molecular Biology, Medical Genetics and Immunology The exact nature of the projects will be determined by the individual supervisors, and communicated to the students well in advance of the commencement of the Research project.
  • BSM-4121: Bioinformatical Analysis Tools (10)
    This module teaches PG research & master students how to apply open-access databases and bioinformatics programmes to biological problems. The module starts with three workshops in which students are introduced to bioinformatics tools designed to study (i) DNA & RNA, (ii) genomes and (iii) proteins. At the end of the third workshop, each student will get a set problem that can be solved using the available internet resources. Help will be provided in two drop-in sessions. The problem solving process has to be summarized in a 15min oral presentation at a scientific symposium. The acquired skills have to be applied to an unseen problem in a 2h supervised practical test in a computer room at the end of the module.
  • BSM-4124: Recombinant protein expression (10)
    This module will address aspects of the production of recombinant proteins in bacteria. These will include details of plasmid vectors used to drive expression in different eukaryotic systems and details of promoters and leader sequences which can be used to both drive expression and details of secretory pathways in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cell systems. Cloning and selection strategies to insert suitable coding sequences downstream of suitable promoters in plasmid vectors will be covered, and the analysis of recombinant plasmids will be detailed. Cloning, purification and analysis of the recombinant proteins produced in bacterial systems will be covered in the two practical sessions allocated to this module. Lecture material will, in addition, use the topic of microbial diversity to study specific examples of the production of biologically important recombinant proteins.
  • BSM-4125: Project Preparation MBB (30)