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​​​​2​14 (16) Introductory Genetics (3L, 3P)

Part I: Principles of Heredity​​

Molecular basis of genetic diversity and heredity; the cell cycle; mitosis and meiosis; chomosomes, genes and heredity; Mendelian genetics; linkage and crossing over of genes on a chromosome; linkage analysis and gene mapping; sexual reproduction and sex determining chromosomes; mutations that affect chromosome number and structure and their phenotypic effects.

Part II: Population Genetics

Introduction to population genetics; population diversity and genotype and allele frequencies; Hardy-Weinberg principle; quantitative genetics and heredity.

PP Biology 124 or 144 or 154

P Mathematics (Bio) 124 or Mathematics 114 or 144

Module co-ordinator: Prof R Roodt-Wilding

Lecturers: Dr NW McGregor, Dr C Rhode, Mrs JA Vervalle, Prof R Roodt-Wilding

215 (16) Introductory Microbial Biotechnology (3L, 3P)

Biotechnology is an applied science, aimed at utilising biological systems and organisms. Biotechnologists therefore use their knowledge of biological systems to generate products or deliver services. This module introduces the student to microbial biotechnology by focussing on the most important aspects of first- and second-generation microbial biotechnology. Themes that will be discussed include bioprospecting, fermentation and bioreactors, microbial metabolic pathways for respiration and fermentation, production of baker's yeast and single-cell protein, the beer- and wine making processes, production of bio-ethanol and the production of pharmaceutically important compounds and enzymes.

​Module co-ordinator: Dr PN Hills

Lecturers: Prof WH van Zyl, Prof FF Bauer, Prof A McLeod, Dr DD van Niekerk

244 (16) Introductory Molecular Biology (3L, 3P)

The biology of the molecule of life. The structure of double-stranded DNA; the processes of replication and recombination of DNA; the deciphering and nature of the genetic code; the processes of transcription and translation; protein structure and function; the regulation of gene expression in prokaryotes and eukaryotes; DNA mutations; DNA repair and transposable elements; the construction and analysis of DNA clones; applications and ethics of recombinant DNA technology; introduction to bio-informatics.

P Genetics 214

Module co-ordinator: Prof JT Burger

Lecturers: Prof JT Burger, Ms M Engelbrecht, Dr C van der Vyver, Dr PN Hills, Dr SW Peters 

245 (16) Introductory Plant and Animal Biotechnology (3L, 3P)

This module follows on from the Genetics 215 module and introduces the student to first- and second-generation biotechnology in eukaryotic systems, including plants, animals and humans. First-generation biotechnology entails the use of organisms/ biological systems as they are, e.g. extracting pharmaceutical products from plants. In contrast, second-generation biotechnology focuses on more specialised techniques, e.g. in vitro propagation, mutagenesis and breeding. Themes that will be discussed include aquaculture, aquatic bioremediation, aquatic bioprocessing, embryogeny, assisted reproduction and embryo manipulation, cell and tissue culture for both plant and animal systems, micropropagation, and the identification, characterisation and production of valuable natural products and pharmaceuticals in plants.

Module co-ordinator: Dr C Rhode

Lecturers: Dr LJ Rose, Dr C Rhode, Dr C van der Vyver, Dr JR Lloyd, Prof A Viljoen

314 (16) Genomes and Genome Analysis (3L, 3P)

The module focuses on the organisation, structure and functionality of genomes and covers the following aspects: genome structure, genome organisation, genome function and methods to study genomes. Chromosome structure and organisation are also studied. Other complementary topics include: Introductory Bioinformatics to study genomes; chloroplast and mitochondrial genomes; genome models; genetics of development.

Flexible assessment.

PP Genetics 244

Module co-ordinator: Prof AM Botha-Oberholster

Lecturers: Prof AM Botha-Oberholster, Dr JC Truter, Mr NFV Burger

315 (16) Advanced Biotechnology (3L, 3P)

This module focuses on the most important aspects of third-generation biotechnology. Third-generation biotechnology can also be described as molecular biotechnology and the themes covered include genetic fingerprinting a​nd molecular forensics, molecular diagnostics, genetic engineering, gene therapy, bio-processing, metabolic engineering (integrated metabolism), bioinformatics and mathematical modelling of biological systems, applied "-omics" and nano-biotechnology.

PP Genetics 215, 245​

Module co-ordinator: Dr SW Peters

Lecturer: Prof MA Vivier, Prof FF Bauer, Dr B Loedolff, Dr PN Hills, Dr SW Peters

324 (16) Molecular Population Genetics (3L, 3P)

The genetic structure and dynamics of populations; frequencies of genes and genotypes; genetic polymorphisms; random mating and the Hardy-Weinberg principle; factors that determine genetic change and genetic equilibrium: mutation, migration, selection and population size; linkage disequilibrium, heterozygosity in subdivided populations; genetic relationships between populations; implications for genetic identifications (DNA typing).

Flexible assessment.

PP Genetics 214

C Genetics 244

Module co-ordinator: Dr AE van der Merwe

Lecturers: Dr AE van der Merwe, Dr C Rhode

344 (16) Advanced Topics in Molecular Genetics (3L, 3P)

Various advanced topics are addressed in this module and include: DNA markers and applications in mapping of genes involved with genetic diseases; diagnostic applications in human genetics; marker-assisted selection in plant and animal breeding; DNA fingerprinting and forensic science; applications from genome projects; personalised medicine and pharmacogenetics; epigenomics; genetic modification; cancer and apoptosis; gene therapy; genetics of behavioural traits.

Flexible assessment.

PP Genetics 244

Module co-ordinator: Prof JT Burger

Lecturers: Prof JT Burger, Dr AE van der Merwe, Dr NW Mcgregor, Dr BJ Koehler van Asch

345 (16) Economic and Legal Aspects of Biotechnology (3L, 3P)

This module is aimed at introducing the biotechnology student to the non-biological (non-natural science) aspects of biotechnology. Students will be introduced to concepts such as the generation and development of creative ideas, entrepreneurship, market research, feasibility studies, the generation of a business plan, financing, profitability, the South African legal system, intellectual property law, patents, plant breeders' rights, trademarks and copyright, licensing agreements, regulatory measures and prerequisites in terms of research practice and GMOs, good laboratory practice, quality control and project management in a research environment.​

Module co-ordinator: Dr PN Hills

Lecturers: Dr S Groenewald, Dr PN Hills, Mrs A Brand, Dr SW Peters

354 (16) Quantitative Genetics (3L, 3P)

Quantitative traits and continuous variation; components of phenotypic and genetic variances; resemblance between relatives; estimation of heritability and breeding value; selection methods and genetic improvement; correlated traits; multiple traits selection; principles of marker-based selection; mapping and characterising of quantitative trait loci.

Flexible assessment.

P Genetics 324

P Biometry 211 or 212

Module co-ordinator: Mr WC Botes

Lecturer: Mr WC Botes