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Module

MMB8031 : Developmental Genetics

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Simon Bamforth
  • Lecturer: Dr Gavin Clowry, Dr Colin Miles, Dr Katarzyna Pirog, Professor David Elliott, Dr Janet Kerwin, Dr Louise Reynard, Professor Helen Arthur, Dr Helen Phillips, Dr Ralf Kist, Professor Lyle Armstrong, Dr Amanda Greenall
  • Owning School: FMS Graduate School
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semesters
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0

Aims

The primary aims of this module are to:

1. introduce students to the genetic mechanisms controlling developmental processes, and to illustrate their importance for identifying and evaluating inherited disorders in humans.

2. provide the students with a comprehensive knowledge about the latest research technologies applied to the analysis and understanding of gene functions in the developing mammalian embryo.

Outline Of Syllabus

This module will teach fundamental principles of Developmental Genetics and will explain how they impact on medically relevant research areas through the delivery of the taught sessions describing topical research projects currently carried out by group leaders involved in teaching on this module.

Specifically, the module will consider:

•       The early developmental processes that regulate the establishment of the body plan.

•       How gene activities control the formation of “patterns.”

•       The genetic control regulating the development of major organ systems.

•       Key signalling pathways in development.

•       Human tissue-specific gene expression analysis and digital atlases.

•       Syndromes associated with disrupted functions of key developmental control genes.

•       Practical approaches to investigate gene function in vivo and their application in medical genetics.

•       The importance of developmental processes to the therapeutic potential of embryonic and somatic stem cells.

Teaching Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials131:0013:00Non-synchronous online
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion501:0050:00Preparation of Presentation
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion501:0050:00Preparation and Sumission of Short Essay
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical11:001:00Synchronous online
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching42:008:00Present in person: Seminars
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching13:003:00Present in person: Delivery of presentation
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity251:0025:00Additional Reading and Reflective Learning
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study501:0050:00Preparing Notes from Lecture materials, Seminars and Reading
Total200:00
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The lecture materials and interactive seminars will provide the students with specific knowledge as a platform for private study on current areas of developmental genetic research. The practical provides a platform for interactive exploration of the implication and relevance of developmental genetics upon a spectrum of human disease states. A written essay and an oral presentation to the peer group provide an efficient combination to both help to develop, and to directly examine, these abilities. All of these activities relate directly to the knowledge outcomes above.

Assessment Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Prof skill assessmnt1M50Presentation of a research paper, 20-30 minutes, individually
Report1M501500-2000 word critique of research paper
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Lecture materials on modelling developmental disorders, small group teaching (seminars), and a practical will provide specific knowledge and key facts in Developmental Genetics. Together with self-directed reading and study this will enable the students to critically appraise investigations in the field of Developmental Genetics. Assessments in critiquing a research paper and presentation of a research paper are to examine the student’s analytical skills and to evaluate experimental data and to understand how principles in developmental genetics impact on a wider area of medical research.

Reading Lists

Timetable