Methods in Biotechnology (BIO520)

This course provides a comprehensive introduction to biotechnlogy and novel biomedical methodologies. It involves practical laboratory work and aims at improving students presenting and writing skills.

Course description for study year 2024-2025. Please note that changes may occur.


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The course provides a comprehensive introduction to the field of biotechnology that will cover essential topics including synthetic biology, genome editing and engineered microbes. It also explores emerging techniques for advancing human health such as immunotherapy, vaccine technology and nanomedicine. The students will participate in scientific writing and present to the class novel discoveries in various fields. The course includes hands-on laboratory practicals where students will perform important biotechnology techniques.

Learning outcome

The student will gain a comprehensive understanding of relevant aspects of genetic engineering and their importance in modern biotechnology. In addition they will explore emerging biotechnology methods within the field of biomedicine. To enhance their presentation skills, students will receive a training on how to prepare a presentation before the oral exam where they will receive relevant feedback to improve this crucial skill. The practical component of the course involves hands-on experience, during which students will work with model organisms, apply sterile techniques, perform PCR, isolate plasmids, and produce recombinant proteins. The results will be analyzed through gel separation and immunoblotting. Furthermore, students will receive training in writing a scientific report.

Required prerequisite knowledge


Recommended prerequisites

Biochemistry and cell biology


Written exams

Form of assessment Weight Duration Marks Aid
Written midterm exam 2 Hours Letter grades None permitted
Written midterm exam 2 Hours Letter grades

Written exam is by pen and paper. Both exams need to be passed in order to pass the course. It is possible to take the midterm exam again if it is not passed. This must be arranged with the course coordinator.

Coursework requirements

Compulsory oral presentation and 1 lab exercise with report, Laboratory exercises, Projects with mandatory handing in of reports

Compulsory oral presentation must be completed and approved.

1 compulsory laboratory exercise with a report must be carried out as planned and with the assigned groups which will be published in advance. In the event of absence due to illness or other reasons, students must immediately notify the laboratory staff. It is important to note that arrangements for carrying out the lab at other times cannot usually be carried out unless this has been agreed with the laboratory staff in advance. Please note that there are no resit options for the laboratory assignments. If a student wishes to retake the laboratory tasks, they will have the opportunity to do so the next time the course is offered.

For the compulsory presentation and laboratory assignment, these must be approved by the course coordinator within three weeks before the exam date in order to be admitted to the final exam.

Course teacher(s)

Course coordinator:

Federico Fenaroli

Coordinator laboratory exercises:

Dugassa Nemie-Feyissa

Head of Department:

Ingunn Westvik Jolma

Study Program Director:

Mark van der Giezen

Method of work

Two hours lectures with theortical background, laboratory review and discussions for 12 weeks and 6 hours laboratory work and lab reports for 6 weeks.

Overlapping courses

Course Reduction (SP)
Biotechnology, methods (MOT380_1) 10

Open for

Biological Chemistry - Master of Science Degree Programme
Exchange programme at Faculty of Science and Technology

Course assessment

There must be an early dialogue between the course supervisor, the student union representative and the students. The purpose is feedback from the students for changes and adjustments in the course for the current semester.In addition, a digital subject evaluation must be carried out at least every three years. Its purpose is to gather the students experiences with the course.


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