Syllabus for Synthetic Biology

Syntetisk biologi

A revised version of the syllabus is available.


  • 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: The Faculty Board of Science and Technology
  • Applies from: week 34, 2012
  • Entry requirements: Alternative 1) 120 credits including Cell biology, Microbiology, Genomic Experimental Methods, Genome Biology Macromolecular Machines is recommended. Alternative 2: Enrolled in Master Programme in Molecular Biotechnology
  • Responsible department: Biology Education Centre

Learning outcomes

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

  • describe how naturally occurring organisms regulate the expression of their genes

  • describe how biotechnology can alter regulation of the genes

  • describe how biotechnology can alter the properties of the cell

  • explain, evaluate and report on practical applications of synthetic biology

  • plan and carry out a laboratory project aimed at creating replicating systems with new properties that can be regulated

  • apply a scientific approach to the planning, execution, reporting and interpretation of advanced experiments that are topical in synthetic biology, and to critically analyse the results and generate testable hypotheses from these experiments

  • critically analyse scientific literature in the area

  • present and defend summaries based on original papers in the area

  • develop ethical perspectives in the area


Structure of genetic material as well as expression and regulation of prokaryotic and eukaryotic systems, including their viruses. Advanced biotechnological methods comprising cloning, mutagenesis, PCR technology, synthesis of nucleic acids and DNA sequence determination. 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 as a methodology in synthetic biology. Ethical aspects.


The course consists of lectures, seminars, labs and literature-based tutorials, all of which are compulsory.


Sections: Laboratory 5 credits; Tutorials and student presentations 1 credit; Theory 4 credits
The Laboratory section requires lab performance according to written and oral guidelines. Active discussion and an oral presentation of a topic is required for the tutorials and student presentations section. The theory is examined through written and/or oral exam.

Reading list

Reading list

Applies from: week 01, 2013

Some titles may be available electronically through the University library.

  • Church, George M.; Regis, Edward Regenesis : how synthetic biology will reinvent nature and ourselves

    New York: Basic Books, c2012

    Find in the library