Medical Biotechnology
Course infoSchedule
Course moduleNWI-MOL104
Credits (ECTS)6
CategoryBA (Bachelor)
Language of instructionEnglish
Offered byRadboud University; Faculty of Science; Moleculaire Wetenschappen;
PreviousNext 5
dr. M. Ansems
Other course modules lecturer
prof. dr. R.W.J. Collin
Other course modules lecturer
dr. ir. W.F. Daamen
Other course modules lecturer
dr. P.J.T.A. Groenen
Other course modules lecturer
dr. W.J.A.J. Hendriks
Other course modules lecturer
Academic year2020
KW1  (31/08/2020 to 01/11/2020)
Starting block
Course mode
Registration using OSIRISYes
Course open to students from other facultiesYes
Waiting listYes
Placement procedureDone manually by Back Office
ExplanationDone manually by Back Office
At the end of the course you are able to:
  • describe molecular and cellular principles of biotechnology
  • describe the application of biotechnology to prevent, diagnose or treat human disease
  • identify recent developments in medical biotechnology
  • design new strategies to use medical biotechnology in clinical practice
  • recognize and evaluate ethical, regulatory and societal aspects of biotechnology in medicine
  • work and collaborate effectively in a group
  • effectively communicate scientific information orally and in writing
Medical biotechnology is the application of living cells or cell material in the development or generation of products to prevent, diagnose or treat human disease. Historical examples of biotechnology in support of medicine are the development of vaccines against smallpox and the production of antibiotics or human insulin by bacteria or yeast. Exciting 21st century developments are genetic engineering with CRISPR/Cas, gene therapy and stem cell-based regenerative medicine. Medical biotechnology is a rapidly evolving field integrating knowledge obtained in molecular, cell biological, genetic and immunological scientific areas.

Through this course, you will obtain an overview of how interdisciplinary efforts help shaping modern healthcare by developing biotechnological diagnostics and therapeutics for precision medicine. Principles and concepts of medical biotechnology will be discussed in a scientific, medical and societal context, including ethical and legal considerations. Together with fellow-students you will use this knowledge and write a medical biotechnological research proposal and present this at a mini-symposium. The course Medical Biotechnology presents an excellent foundation for students interested in molecular life sciences in relation to modern clinical practice.

Key words
Recombinant therapeutics, genetic engineering, gene therapy, vaccines, molecular diagnostics, biologics, stem cells, regenerative medicine, tissue engineering, immunotherapy, medical ethics

Instructional Modes

Presumed foreknowledge
Knowledge obtained in the courses “Animal Cell Biology” and “Biochemstry & Molecular Biology II”, or equivalents, is required. Application deadline is July 31, 2020. In view of the maximal number of students that can participate in the course, a selection procedure may be conducted (see Bijzonderheden/Additional comments).
Test information
Assessment consists of four parts (each must be graded at least 5.5 to pass the course):
  • Written exam (individual; total weight 40%)
  • Written mini-review and research proposal (group; weight 40%)
  • Oral presentation of research proposal (group; weight 10%)
  • Performance, initiative, input and participation during the course (individual; weight 10%)
  • Specifics
    NWI-MOL104 is identical to the first half of the Radboudumc minor MED-MIN13 for Biomedical Sciences and Medical students. Usually, some 15 Radboudumc students participate in the minor. This means that around 30 slots may be available for Molecular Life Sciences and (Medical) Biology students. Application deadline is July 31, 2020. A selection based on motivation will be made by the coordinators in August 2020. FNWI students should therefore also send a letter of motivation to the course coordinator, Wiljan Hendriks, July 31 at the latest.
    Required materials
    Learning Management System (Brigthspace)
    Links to additional study material (reviews, primary research papers) will be provided via Brightspace.

    Recommended materials
    Lodish et al., Molecular Cell Biology, 8th ed., McMillan Higher Education/ W.H.Freeman & Company
    Griffiths et al., Introduction to Genetic Analysis, 11th ed
    Abbas et al., Cellular and Molecular Immunology, 9th ed

    Instructional modes
    Interactive Lectures

    Based on the lecture, background literature and assignments (to be found in the Course Manual), discussions on the subject will be held and clarifications will be given.

    Preparation of meetings
    Prepare by answering the accompanying questions (listed in the Course Manual)

    In total: 9 h


    Please note that the lectures most likely will NOT be recorded. Handouts of the lectures will be published on Brightspace, and accompanying articles are listed in the Course Manual.

    In total: 20 h

    Minisymposium (student presentations)
    Attendance MandatoryYes

    During this afternoon all student teams will present their research proposal. At the end of the symposium your peers will elect the best project.

    In total: 4 h

    Practical computer training
    Attendance MandatoryYes

    By means of computer-assisted educational means (E-learning modules) you will learn more about i) Rec-DNA and Recombinant Proteins, and ii) Genetically Modified Organisms.

    In total: 4 h

    Project (team work)
    Attendance MandatoryYes

    As a team (3-5 students) you design, write down and present a PhD research proposal.
    Guidance via tutor meetings will be provided.

    In total: 48 h, 2880 min

    Self Study

    In total: 3600 min, 60 h

    Tutor group meeting
    Attendance MandatoryYes

    During six meetings with the Tutor, the team will discuss in-depth items relating to the writing of the Research Proposal.

    Preparation of meetings
    Tutors need to be provided, well in advance, with meeting agenda and relevant teamwork products.

    In total: 5 h

    Test weight4
    Test typeExam
    OpportunitiesBlock KW1, Block KW2, Block KW3

    Written assignment
    Test weight4
    Test typeAssignment
    OpportunitiesBlock KW1

    Test weight1
    Test typePresentation
    OpportunitiesBlock KW1

    Test weight1
    Test typeParticipation
    OpportunitiesBlock KW1