Biotechnology for Crop Production

Module summary

Module code: BOTA1018
Level: 6
Credits: 15
School: Engineering and Science
Department: Natural Resources Institute
Module Coordinator(s): Susan Seal


Pre and co requisites

Students will be expected to have biochemistry experience.


Develop understanding of biotechnological innovations that can contribute positively to crop production.
The module aims to develop understanding in:
• To teach the molecular biology principles underlying GM technology
• To teach participants to be able to evaluate the potential advantages and biosafety risks posed by the introduction of a GM crop.
• To provide practical experience of detection of GM plants and bioinformatic analyses.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student will be able to:
1. General understanding of the science underlying GM technology
2. Critically review the scientific principles and methodology underlying the genetic modification of a plant’s DNA
3. Critically evaluate the factors that need to be considered in assessing the biosafety risks associated with the introduction of GM crops
4. Understand and evaluate current research in applied bioscience and biotechnology through reading published papers.

Indicative content

• History of transgenic crops
• Agrobacterium, phytohormones and tissue culture
• Gene expression analysis in plants
• Marker assisted breeding
• Mutations and genome editing
• Molecular diagnostics of relevance to GM crops
• Agronomy in the modern world: Next generation sequencing analysis and its uses
• Benefits, Risks and Containment of GM crops