BIOL08006 2019 Biomolecular Technologies

General Details

Full Title
Biomolecular Technologies
Transcript Title
Biomolecular Technologies
N/A %
Subject Area
BIOL - Biology
ESCI - Environmental Science
08 - NFQ Level 8
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2019 - Full Academic Year 2019-20
End Term
9999 - The End of Time
Noel Connaughton, Ana Vale, Nicolas Touzet
Programme Membership
SG_SAPPL_H08 201900 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Applied Archaeology SG_SECOL_H08 202000 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Environmental Science with Ecology SG_SAPPL_K08 201900 Level 8 Honours Degree Add-on in Applied Archaeology

This teaching unit will introduce students to the principles underpinning molecular biology and practical components of biomolecular methodologies which apply to environmental and archaeological sciences.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Explaining the principles underpinning biomolecular analyses


Comparing the principles of key biomolecular techniques


Discussing relevant environmental and/or archaeological molecular biology based case studies


Taking part in and analysing molecular biology based laboratory experiments

Teaching and Learning Strategies

This module will be delivered fulltime. This will include lectures and laboratory practicals, which will be augmented by independent learning and directed learning. This approach is expected to address student learning needs. Moodle will be used as a repository of educational resources. Real field samples will be used for some of the laboratory-based practicals.

Module Assessment Strategies

This module is 60% Continuous Assessment and 40% Final exam.

The continuous assessment will involve 2 class examinations (10% each, planned on weeks 7 and 11) and the drafting and submission of 2 reports (15% each, planned on weeks 8 and 13) and a lab-book (10%) based on the laboratory experiments undertaken throughout the semester.


Repeat Assessments

Repeat Continuous Assessment and/or Final Exam.

Indicative Syllabus

1- Explaining the principles underpinning biomolecular analyses

  • Basic concepts (biomolecules, DNA replication, transcription, translation, genetic polymorphism)

2- Comparing the principles of key biomolecular techniques

  • Review of molecular methodologies (eg. PCR, electrophoresis, cloning, ELISA, sequencing, qPCR, FISH, biosensors, microarrays)

3- Discussing relevant environmental and/or archaeological molecular biology based case studies

  • Case study selection (eg. fingerprinting aquatic microbial communities, DNA-based ID of past remains, origins of modern humans, molecular ecology and forensics)

4- Taking part in and analysing molecular biology laboratory experiments

  • Laboratory practicals (a selection of biomolecular techniques will be employed)

Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
60 %
End of Semester / Year Formal Exam
40 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Class Test 1 Continuous Assessment Closed Book Exam 10 % Week 7 1
2 Class Test 2 Continuous Assessment Closed Book Exam 10 % Week 11 2
3 Laboratory Practicals Continuous Assessment Written Report 40 % OnGoing 4

End of Semester / Year Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Final Exam Final Exam Closed Book Exam 40 % End of Semester 1,2,3

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Lecture Theatre Theory 2 Weekly 2.00
Laboratory Practical Science Laboratory Lab-work 2 Weekly 2.00
Independent Learning Not Specified Self-study work 3 Weekly 3.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 4.00 Hours

Required & Recommended Book List

Recommended Reading
2010-01-01 Environmental Molecular Microbiology Caister Academic Press
ISBN 1904455522 ISBN-13 9781904455523
Recommended Reading
2015-10-13 Gene Cloning and DNA Analysis: An Introduction Wiley-Blackwell

Known world-wide as the standard introductory text to this important and exciting area, the seventh edition of Gene Cloning and DNA Analysis addresses new and growing areas of research whilst retaining the philosophy of the previous editions. Assuming the reader has little prior knowledge of the subject, its importance, the principles of the techniques used and their applications are all carefully laid out, with over 250 clearly presented four-colour illustrations.

In addition to a number of informative changes to the text throughout the book, the chapters on DNA sequencing and genome studies have been rewritten to reflect the continuing rapid developments in this area of DNA analysis:

  • In depth description of the next generation sequencing methods and descriptions of their applications in studying genomes and transcriptomes
  • New material on the use of ChiP-seq to locate protein-binding sites
  • Extended coverage of the strategies used to assemble genome sequences
  • Description of how the Neanderthal genome has been sequenced and what that sequence tells us about interbreeding between Neanderthals and Homo sapiens

Gene Cloning and DNA Analysis remains an essential introductory text to a wide range of biological sciences students; including genetics and genomics, molecular biology, biochemistry, immunology and applied biology. It is also a perfect introductory text for any professional needing to learn the basics of the subject. All libraries in universities where medical, life and biological sciences are studied and taught should have copies available on their shelves.

Recommended Reading
2011-02-08 Biomolecular Archaeology: An Introduction Imprint unknown
ISBN 1444392433 ISBN-13 9781444392432
Recommended Reading
2010-11-15 Molecular Ecology Wiley
ISBN 0470090626 ISBN-13 9780470090626

The book is brand new and will be dispatched from UK.

Module Resources

Journal Resources

Selection of scientific journals relevant to the module including for example the following :

Food Control / Trends in Biotechnology / Toxicon / Applied and Environmental Microbiology / Journal of Archaeological Science / Trends in Ecology and Evolution / Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology / PLOS One / PNAS / FEMS Microbiology & Ecology

Other Resources


Additional Information