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2010/1 Module Catalogue
Module Provider: Biosciences Short Name: MMIM018
Level: M Module Co-ordinator: STEWART GR Dr (Biosciences)
Number of credits: 15 Number of ECTS credits: 7.5
Module Availability
Semester 1
Assessment Pattern
Examination 40%
Coursework 40%
Practical Training Report 20%
Module Overview
Provision of Overview of Microbial Genetics.
Module Aims
This module is intended to provide an overview of microbial genetics, especially those aspects that are especially relevant to medical microbiology. Attention will be paid to developing an understanding of the techniques of genetic manipulation and the recent advances which have been made with the use of these techniques.  The application of bio-informatics, and post-genomic developments in transcriptional analysis and proteomics will also be covered. The module is structured to include four Wednesdays of lectures and a block week of mixed practicals and lectures over the Easter break.
Learning Outcomes

At the end of the module you should be able to:

  • describe and evaluate the techniques of gene cloning,  DNA manipulation and sequencing
  • discuss strategies for producing recombinant DNA products
  • discuss the regulation of gene expression
  • explain the use of gene probes and PCR
  • critically discuss the application of bioinformatics to analysing molecular data
  • appreciate and describe how post-genomic studies in transcriptional mapping and proteomics can be applied to obtain a fuller understanding of the disease process.
  • perform some modern molecular biology techniques not available in their home laboratories

Additionally, students should use these practical modules to learn the correct way in which to present research material in preparation for their thesis preparation.


 Further information:

It is advisable for you to stay at the University during the block week of mixed lectures/practicals. Your lecture/laboratory time will be scheduled from 9.30 am until 5 pm. The remaining time may be used as you see fit but you are strongly advised to take advantage of the library and computer facilities available to you.


You will be provided with a detailed practical schedule at least two weeks in advance of the practical. This will give you time to do some preparatory reading and preparation.

Module Content

Basic molecular biology, Plasmids, Phages 
Gene transfer 
Causes of variation: mutations, transposition 
Gene probes/PCR: diagnostic applications, epidemiology 
Regulation of gene expression 
Genetic engineering - strategies & applications 
Transcription mapping:  micro-arrays 

Methods of Teaching/Learning
Lectures, practical laboratory sessions.
Selected Texts/Journals

It will be assumed that students have a basic knowledge of microbial genetics; those who have not are advised to read “Molecular genetics of bacteria” by JW Dale & S F Park, Wiley, 5th edition 2010, (ISBN: 0 470850841)  before the module starts.


Recommended reading:


  • Gene cloning and DNA analysis: An Introduction. by TA Brown, 5th Edition, Blackwell, 2006 (ISBN: 978-1-4051-1121-8)  
  • Molecular cell biology. by Lodish et al, 6th Edition, Freeman, 2007 (ISBN-10: 0716776014)
  • From genes to genomes by JW Dale & M. von Schantz, J. Wiley, 2002, (ISBN: 047149783
Last Updated
August 2010