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Advanced topics in Biotechnology - BIO00066H

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  • Department: Biology
  • Module co-ordinator: Prof. Seth Davis
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2021-22

Module summary

This module will study and critique the Industrial Biotechnology sector with a focus on molecules of commercial relevance. For this we will will focus on the latest trends in Industrial Biotechnology research. The approach to teaching will centre on student participation in analysis of contemporary research literature, and associated methods and data analysis. The intention is to introduce students to topics that analyse impact-relevant approaches at molecular, cellular and synthetic-biological levels. Considerations will focus on how IB products are discovered/invented and the modified for optimised purposes.

Related modules

Co-requisite modules

  • None

Prohibited combinations

  • None

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Autumn Term 2021-22 to Summer Term 2021-22

Module aims

This module will focus on the latest research in industrial biotechnology research, with a focus on biological systems in the production of chemical products, from biofuels to high-value metabolites and industrial and therapeutic proteins. The approach to teaching will centre on student participation in analysis of recent research literature, and associated methods with a focus on the application of integrating contemporary approaches concentrating on trends in the field. Areas of study will include: plant biotechnology, metabolic engineering, biocatalysis, production of extremophilic enzymes and recombinant therapeutic proteins.

Module learning outcomes

1. Critically analyse research papers in molecular biotechnology

2. Discuss recent research landmarks in biotechnology relating to the manufacturing of chemicals and proteins in cellular systems

3. Design experiments relevant to different aspects of biotechnology

4. Integrate diverse data sets to understand how organisms produce molecular/chemical products


Task Length % of module mark
Online Exam - 24 hrs (Centrally scheduled)
Advanced topics in Biotechnology
8 hours 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Online Exam - 24 hrs (Centrally scheduled)
Advanced topics in Biotechnology
8 hours 100

Module feedback

Cohort-level feedback will be provided on performance in closed exams and made available via the VLE. Histograms of module marks will be posted on the notice boards outside the Biology Student Services office. Individual marks will be made available to you and your supervisor via e:vision. Exam scripts will be made available at the end of either the Spring or Summer terms. You should take the opportunity to discuss your marks and feedback with your supervisor.


During the teaching of the module you will receive feedback that may be at a whole class or individual level. Forms of feedback may include: model answers and discussion of workshop questions, summaries of performance in practicals, VLE-based quizzes, individual spoken comments during workshops, individual written comments on formative work.  

Indicative reading

These are available through the VLE module site.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.