Module Title:Molecular Genetics and Immunology
Language of Instruction:English
Credits: 10
NFQ Level:8
Module Delivered In 1 programme(s)
Teaching & Learning Strategies: This module will be taught in three theory classes, of one hour each, per week for thirty weeks. Timetabling will also accommodate tutorial classes during the year, totaling thirty hours. Relevant class notes, diagrams and self assessment tools will be available at the Institute’s student common drive. Class will be subjected to regular informal testing and peer teaching and learning during class time. Emphasis will be given to case studies linking concepts to realistic situations. Students will be required to review and summarise key published papers on certain topics. Explicit information regarding scientific report writing, and presentation skills will be given and developed. Students will also practice effective social learning and group work. Independent student Learning journals will be kept and presented for assessment.
Module Aim: The aim of this module is to give students a functional competency in the theoretical knowledge and the methods of molecular genetics, biotechnology and immunology.
Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this module the learner should be able to:
LO1 Describe and discuss the basic techniques and applications of genetic engineering, molecular diagnostics and recombinant DNA technology and relate these to biotechnology research and development.
LO2 Outline fundamental principles of eukaryotic genetics at the molecular level, with special emphasis to human disease.
LO3 Demonstrate an appreciation of genomics with special emphasis to the human genome.
LO4 Discuss the role of safety in creation, handling, storage and disposal of genetically engineered microorganisms with respects to the legislation governing this sector.
LO5 Discuss the mammalian immune response with respect to antibody production and vaccine efficacy.
LO6 Explain the basis of antibody and antigen reactions and demonstrate how this interaction can be commercially exploited.
LO7 Evaluate the production of monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies, their current and potential commercial roles and their industrial, environmental and therapeutic application.
LO8 Discuss the principles of protein purification with respect to immunoglobulins
Pre-requisite learning
Module Recommendations

This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is recommended before enrolment in this module.

No recommendations listed
Incompatible Modules
These are modules which have learning outcomes that are too similar to the learning outcomes of this module.
No incompatible modules listed
Co-requisite Modules
No Co-requisite modules listed
This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is mandatory before enrolment in this module is allowed.
No requirements listed

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Molecular Genetics
Nucleic Acid Technologies and Diagnostics: Gene Cloning Recombinant DNA technology. PCR. Cloning vectors. cDNA libraries. DNA sequencing. Clone identification using nucleic acid hybridization and gene probes. Southern blotting. DNA microarrays. Real time PCR. Protein engineering and biotechnology applications. Genomics: Structural genomics: Gene characterization. Genomics projects. Genome sequencing using mapping and direct shotgun approaches. Genetic markers; SNPs and Haplotypes. Functional genomics: Identifying genes in DNA sequences. Homology searches to assign gene function. Describing patterns of gene expression. Assigning Gene Function Experimentally; Gene knockout/knock down, Microarrays and RNA interference. Comparative genomics: case study genes as appropriate: HAR-1 gene, FOXP2 gene , ASPM gene, human frataxin, the globin gene family. Representaional oligonucleoide microarray analysis (ROMA). Genomics projects. The Human Genome Project. Bioethics and the Human Genome Project. Genes and Disease: Detection of genetic disorders using molecular diagnostics, Chromosomal aberrations. Genetically based enzyme deficiencies. Gene control of protein structure: sickle cell anaemia. Trinucleotide repeat expansions and human disease. Genes and cancer. Detection and isolation of genes causing disease, case study: the cystic fibrosis gene. Safety and the genetic manipulation of organisms: Categorisation and containment: naturally – occurring organisms and GMOs. Biohazard waste disposal. Genetically engineered products. Possible hazards from GMOs. Genetic traceability. Regulatory bodies and legislation.
Mammalian immune response: Overview of the mammalian immune response with respect to antibody production and vaccine efficacy. Antigens and immunogens. Antibody and antigen reactions in vivo and in vitro. Antibody affinity and avidity. Structure and properties of immunoglobulins, overview of main isotypes, source of antibody diversity. Commercial antibody production: Polyclonal and monoclonal antibody production. Large-scale antibody production. Antibody purification methods. Applications of antibody and antigenic reactions, kits, monoclonal antibodies in detection, diagnostics and therapy. Vaccines: Immunization: passive and active. Vaccine production and development with respect to problems associated with human vaccines.
Practical's will be delivered as tutorials focusing on problem solving and assisting the student in the interpretation and analysis of molecular data generated through modern molecular techniques including; qPCR, Microarray analysis, Southern hybridization analysis, Eliza, Restriction digests, Primer/probe design and optimization, Manipulation of raw sequence data via bioinformatic tools, Sequencing and DNA fingerprinting. Above techniques will be adopted and substituted as appropriate. In addition to the tutorials students will be asked to review, summarise and present key research papers and current developments in topics encountered during the course of study. Material and presentations generated will be assessed on an ongoing basis.
Assessment Breakdown%
Continuous Assessment10.00%
End of Module Formal Examination70.00%
Continuous Assessment
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Other Two continuous Assessment exams 1,2,3,5,6,7,8 10.00 n/a
No Project
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Practical/Skills Evaluation Student learning Journal 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8 20.00 Every Second Week
End of Module Formal Examination
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Formal Exam Final examination of three hour duration 1,2,3,5,6,7,8 70.00 End-of-Semester

ITCarlow reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload

Workload: Full Time
Workload Type Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload
Lecture 30 Weeks per Stage 3.00
Laboratory 30 Weeks per Stage 1.00
Estimated Learner Hours 30 Weeks per Stage 2.67
Total Hours 200.00

Module Delivered In

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
CW_SABTP_B Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Biosciences with Biopharmaceuticals 4 Mandatory