Developmental and Applied Genetics

University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Developmental and Applied Genetics

  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    CELS 191 and 54 further points

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    Developmental genetics of bacteria, yeast, animals and plants; mutant screens to investigate gene function; applications of genetically engineered plants and animals in biotechnology; safety and regulation of GE organisms.

    GENE 223 provides an overview of the genetic basis of development in a broad range of organisms - from microorganisms to animals and plants. Development specifies the morphology of these organisms. The course includes examples of how genetic engineering is used to understand development and how genetics can be applied to biotechnology. Examples include genetic manipulation in animals, yeast and plants. The lecture course is complemented by a laboratory course that gives hands-on experience of methods that are used in developmental genetics and biotechnology.

    Teaching Arrangements
    There are six weeks of laboratory classes, in three 2-week blocks. Students are assigned to one of two lab streams (Monday or Friday afternoons). Laboratory classes run from 2.00 pm to 6.00 pm (room 201, Microbiology building).

    Course Structure
    The lecture course is divided into 5 topics:
    - Bacterial model systems (3 lectures)
    - Yeast as a model eukaryote (4 lectures)
    - Animal development (10 lectures)
    - Plant development (4 lectures)
    - Biotechnology (9 lectures)

    The practical sessions of the course will provide the opportunity to experience some of the methods used in developmental genetics and biotechnology and to learn skills required for the interpretation of results. This includes genetic analysis of yeast, embryonic development in animal and plants (including chemical manipulation of zebrafish development), the use of commercial kits for detecting genetically modified organisms and discussion of the ethical, economic and environmental issues around the use of genetic engineering.

    Learning Outcomes
    The broad objectives of GENE 223 are to understand:
    - The complexity of developmental genetics in bacterial model systems
    - The use of yeast as a simple model of eukaryote development
    - The diversity of animal models for development; signalling in animal development
    - Sex determination as a developmental cascade
    - Genetic screens as tools to build genetic pathways
    - Production and use of transgenic plants to understand development
    - Genetic control of flowering
    - The use of genetically engineered organisms as chemical factories
    - Manipulation to improve quality and yield
    - The production of transgenic foods and the associated health, safety and regulatory issues

    Introduction to Genetic Analysis (Griffiths, Wessler, Lewontin, Gelbart, Suzukin and Miller), 10th Edition. The 9th Edition of this book is also satisfactory if you have access to a copy.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.