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Genes and Environment (BIOL10003)

Undergraduate level 1Points: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2018
Subject levelUndergraduate Level 1
Subject codeBIOL10003
Semester 2
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

The objective of this subject is to familiarise students with model systems for research in biomedicine; bacteria: beneficial and harmful bacteria; viruses and infectious molecules; fungal pathogens and the role of fungi in medicine; evolution of primates and humans. The modern concepts of genetics, human evolution and model organisms used in biomedicine research.

Topics include the genetic consequence of meiosis; inheritance; chromosomes, genes/alleles, dominance relationships, autosomal/sex-linked inheritance; one locus, blood groups, pedigree analysis, examples of human genetic disease; more than one locus, gene interaction, linkage, multifactorial/quantitative inheritance, heritability; DNA structure and function, replication, transcription, translation, mutation; genes and development; tools used for molecular genetic analysis: restriction enzymes, PCR, gel electrophoresis, aims of the Human Genome Project; recombinant DNA technology; genes in populations; human diversity, polymorphisms, selection, the theory of evolution; species; biodiversity and genetic resources.

Intended learning outcomes

At the completion of this subject, students should be able to

  • understand the various transmission and invasion strategies of parasites.
  • understand the taxa of parasites and the importance of sexual and asexual reproduction to them.
  • understand how natural selection works and resistance evolves.
  • understand the evolutionary history of humans
  • describe the basic mechanisms of inheritance, including the relationship between phenotype and genotype, transmission genetics, recombination and multifactorial inheritance
  • explain the structure of DNA, its replication and the molecular basis of gene expression,transcription, translation, the genetic code and mutation.
  • describe tools used in molecular genetic analysis and aims of the Human Genome Project
  • describe the nature of genetic variation in populations, natural selection, microevolution, reproductive isolation and speciation
  • explain the evidence for the evolution of life including molecular, fossil and phylogenic data with emphasis on primate evolution
  • appreciate the biodiversity of life including the importance of bacteria, viruses and fungi in biomedical science

Generic skills

At the completion of this subject students should be able to:

  • plan effective work schedules to be prepared for tutorials, practical classes and examinations.
  • be familiar with electronic forms of communication and be discerning in the use of the web for seeking information.
  • integrate the computer software packages into the course to assist learning.
  • be able to complete basic manipulations with laboratory equipment, for example the microscope and gel electrophoresis.
  • develop skills in recording observations, analysis and interpretation of data
  • develop basis skills in statistical analysis of genetic data.
  • access basic information from the library both electronically and in a traditional way.
  • begin to develop skills in working collaboratively with other students in a practical class.

Last updated: 24 July 2019