Year
2021
Units
4.5
Contact
2 x 1-hour lectures weekly
5 x 1-hour tutorials per semester
1 x 1-hour workshop weekly
5 x 2-hour computer labs per semester
Prerequisites
BIOL2772 - Molecular Biology
Enrolment not permitted
1 of BIOL8004, BIOL9004 has been successfully completed
Assessment
Assignment(s)
Topic description

In this topic students will learn fundamental concepts about genes and genomics that form the core of current molecular approaches that are now used to study biological processes. Students will build on concepts introduced at second year level. The topic will review the central dogma of molecular biology DNA to RNA to protein and then go on to explore in more detail how gene expression is controlled. In addition students will learn more about basic tools of recombinant DNA and how these are applied to solve interesting biological problems in human medicine, forensic science and the biotechnology industry. Finally students will learn the fundamentals of whole genome sequencing, how the human genome was sequenced and will also review bioinformatics and experimental approaches to make use of sequence data.

Educational aims

This topic aims to:

  • Familiarise students with recombinant DNA technology and how it is applied to gene discovery and understanding more about the function of genes and proteins. A particular emphasis will be placed on the Human genome project and how in recent years we have moved to study genes and gene interactions on more global scale and how bioinformatics had aided this
  • Further develop students' generic skills in creativity and problem-solving, independence, using online resources, communication to scientific and non-scientific audiences and critical thinking
Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to be able to:

  1. Develop further your understanding of the concepts of molecular biology: from the processes and regulation of DNA structure, gene transcription and translation
  2. Develop further your knowledge and understanding of DNA and genomics techniques of the past and the present including those used for DNA and genome sequencing and newly emerging sequencing techniques. This includes acquiring an appreciation for how these techniques are used to diagnose and understand the pathology of human diseases, to develop new disease treatments and underpin approaches to personalised medicine
  3. Appreciate the role bioinformatics and information technology have played in genomics research
  4. Gain further awareness and hands-on experience in the principles of database searching, using search engines, sequence alignments, and molecular phylogeny using web-based and stand-alone bioinformatics programs
  5. Enhance your critical thinking skills in interpreting, summarizing and placing genomic and DNA based research in context and presenting data and scientific ideas, and communication to scientific and non-scientific audiences

Key dates and timetable

(1), (2)

Each class is numbered in brackets.
Where more than one class is offered, students normally attend only one.

Classes are held weekly unless otherwise indicated.

FULL

If you are enrolled for this topic, but all classes for one of the activities (eg tutorials) are full,
contact your College Office for assistance. Full classes frequently occur near the start of semester.

Students may still enrol in topics with full classes as more places will be made available as needed.

If this padlock appears next to an activity name (eg Lecture), then class registration is closed for this activity.

Class registration normally closes at the end of week 2 of each semester.

Classes in a stream are grouped so that the same students attend all classes in that stream.
Registration in the stream will result in registration in all classes.
  Unless otherwise advised, classes are not held during semester breaks or on public holidays.