The aim of the course is to disseminate the knowledge of molecular basis of life. Molecular biology is a specialized branch, the study of the chemistry of molecules which are specifically connected to living processes. Of particular importance to molecular biology are the nucleic acids (DNA & RNA) and the proteins which are constructed using the genetic instructions encoded in those molecules. As a result, molecular biology techniques are at the forefront of most cutting edge scientific research. This course gives information on a number of commonly used molecular biology techniques involving DNA. The molecules which form the basis of life provide scientists with a more predictable and mechanistic tool for scientists to study. Working with whole organisms (or even just whole cells) can be unpredictable, with the outcome of experiments relying on the interaction of thousands of molecular pathways and external factors. Molecular biology provides scientists with a toolkit with which they may “tinker” with the way life works.

Aims and Objectives

Molecular biology deals with

  • Nucleic acids and proteins and how these molecules interact within the cell to promote proper growth, division, and development. .
  • To provide with the core principles of  molecular biology
  • To understand about basic principles and methods of different techniques and their importance.

Learning outcomes:

At the end students will be able to understand

  • How DNA which stores all the information can be isolated and manipulated
  • How genetically modified organisms can be prepared by using different techniques
  • How a gene can be cloned and how’s its expression can be checked

How advanced techniques can be helpful to combat with genetically inherited diseases

Assessment criteria:

  • Sessional (Attendance, assignment & presentation) 10 Marks
  • Practical Exam           15 Marks
  • Mid Term Exam         30 Marks
  • Final Term Marks       45 Marks


  1. Nucleic Acids: DNA-circular and superhelical DNA, renaturation, hybridization, sequencing of nucleic acids, synthesis of DNA, Central Dogma
  2. Proteins: Basic features of protein molecules, folding of polypeptide chain, α-helical and β-secondary structures, protein purification and sequencing.
  3. Transcription: Enzymatic synthesis of RNA, transcriptional signals. Translation: The genetic code, the Wobbling, polycistronic and monocistronic RNA, overlapping genes.
  4. Gene regulation in Eukaryotes: Differences in genetic organization and prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Regulation of transcription, initiation, regulation of RNA processing, regulation of nucleocytoplasmic mRNA transport, regulation of mRNA stability, regulation of translation, regulation of protein activity.
  5. Plant Genomics: Transcriptomics; DNA libraries, their construction, screening and application. Microarray of gene technology and its application in functional genomics.
  6. Proteomics: Structural and functional proteomics, methods to study proteomics Metabolomics; methods to study metabolomics; importance and application of metabolomics
  7. Bioinformatics and Computational Biology. Levels, scope, potential and industrial application of bioinformatics and computational biology, docking.

Lab work

  1. Following techniques will be used for the isolation and analysis of different components:
  2. Extraction of RNA, DNA and proteins. Electrophoreses: One and two dimensional. Purification of proteins, RNA and DNA.  Amplification using P. Northern, Western and Southern Blotting.

Recommended Texts

  1. Nelson, D., & Cox, M., (2017). Lehninger: principles of biochemistry (7th ed.). London: W.H. Freeman-Macmillan Learning.
  2. Lodish, H., Berk, A., Kaiser, C., Krieger, M. & Bretscher, A., (2016). Molecular cell biology (8th ed.). London: W.H. Freeman-Macmillan Learning.

Suggested Readings

  1. Venkat, B.,Sahijram, R.& Murthy, K., (2015). Plant biology and biotechnology (1st ed.). Berlin: Springers-Verlag.
  2. Clark, D., Pazdernik, N. &  McGehee, M., (2019). Molecular biology (1st ed.). Amsterdam: Elsevier Inc.


Course Material