Syllabus for Synthetic Biology

Syntetisk biologi


  • 10 credits
  • Course code: 1MB433
  • Education cycle: Second cycle
  • Main field(s) of study and in-depth level: Molecular Biotechnology A1F, Technology A1F, Applied Biotechnology A1F
  • Grading system: Fail (U), Pass (3), Pass with credit (4), Pass with distinction (5)
  • Established: 2012-03-06
  • Established by:
  • Revised: 2019-10-25
  • Revised by: The Faculty Board of Science and Technology
  • Applies from: week 27, 2020
  • Entry requirements: Alternative 1) 120 credits including Microbiology and Genomics and bioinformatics and 5 credits on advanced level. Alternative 2) 15 credits within the Masterprogramme in Applied Biotechnology. 
    English language proficiency that corresponds to English studies at upper secondary (high school) level in Sweden ("English 6").
  • Responsible department: Biology Education Centre

Learning outcomes

Through the course, the students will achieve a deep knowledge in the field of synthetic biology.
On completion of the course, the student should be able to:

  • describe how naturally occurring organisms regulate the expression of their genes
  • describe how the regulation of the genes and properties of gene products can be altered with synthetic biology methods used during the course
  • describe how synthetic biology alters the properties of the cell or the organism
  • apply a scientific approach to the planning, execution, reporting and interpretation of advanced projects with the aim at creating replicating systems with new properties that can be regulated, and to critically analyse the results and generate testable hypotheses from these experiments
  • critically analyse, present and defend scientific literature in synthetic biology, including practical applications such as biofuel and metabolic engineering
  • develop ethical perspectives in synthetic biology


Structure of, expression and regulation in prokaryotic and eukaryotic systems, including their viruses. Advanced biotechnological methods comprising cloning, mutagenesis, polymerase chain reaction, synthesis of nucleic acids, DNA sequence determination, synthetic genomics, CRISPR-Cas9, directed evolution, alternative splicing and computational modeling. Experimental characterisation of structural and functional properties of biomolecules. Bioinformatic analysis and characterisation of genes and biomolecules. Basic theoretical and computational modelling of replicating systems. Laboratory highlighting BioBrick cloning and chromoprotein reporters as a methodology in synthetic biology. Ethical aspects.


The course consists of lectures, seminars, labs and a literature-based symposium. Participation in seminars, the symposium, labs and related lessons, is compulsory.


Sections: Laboratory 5 credits; Seminars and symposium 1 credit; Theory 4 credits
The Laboratory section requires lab performance according to written and oral guidelines. Active discussion, including an oral presentation of a topic is required for the seminars and symposium section. The theory is examined through written exam. 
If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the disability coordinator of the university.

Other directives

A maximum of two of the courses Project in Laboratory Synthetic Biology I, Project in Laboratory Synthetic Biology II and Synthetic Biology may be included in the Bachelor's or Master's degree.

Reading list

Reading list

Applies from: week 27, 2020

Research Articles

  • Liljeruhm, Josefine; Gullberg, Erik; Forster, Anthony C. Synthetic biology : a lab manual

    Find in the library