Date: 15 November 2004
To: All UF Graduate Students
All UF Graduate Coordinators
All UF Graduate Staff
From: UF Graduate School
RE: SPRING 2005 COURSE OFFERING
The UF Agronomy Department has asked us to pass on the following information
about a Spring 2005 course it is offering, in which you may be interested.
AGR 5307 Molecular Genetics for Crop Improvement
Schedule: Tuesdays, Periods 10 and 11 (2 credits)
Location: McCarty B 3124
Instructor: Fredy Altpeter
The goals of this lecture and laboratory demonstration course (AGR 5307) are
to convey a working knowledge of how genes are expressed in plants and how
knowledge of plant genetics, cell biology, biochemistry, physiology and
recombinant DNA techniques can be combined to produce and characterize
plants with novel traits. This will enable students to understand and
discuss molecular crop improvement in the era of functional genomics. Recent
examples of genetically engineered crops and the current efforts of the
biotechnology industry will be discussed. We will also spend some time
discussing the environmental, social, economic and ethical issues related to
genetic engineering of plants.
Students should note that recombinant DNA techniques are useful tools to
analyze genetic, physiological and cellular phenomena in most intensively
studied organisms, not just in plants. Consequently, the experimental
approaches and concepts presented will be applicable in other fields of
biological research. Therefore AGR 5307 should be an important component of
the courses of study for a number of graduate students in the plant and life
Introduce into concepts and applied aspects of plant molecular and cellular
biology that allow students to understand and discuss molecular crop
improvement in the era of functional genomics.
50% of the course will be lectures
20% of the course will be laboratory demonstrations
20% of the course will be analysis and discussion of molecular crop
10% of the course will be a case study on ethical aspects of transgenic
Brief introduction into DNA replication, transcription and translation,
regulation of gene expression.
Methodology from isolating a gene to its defined expression in transgenic
plants. (Database analysis, isolation of nucleic acids, PCR, vector
construction, plant tissue culture, gene transfer, characterization of
transgenic plants, library construction, expression profiling).
Transgene silencing and its application for RNA-mediated virus resistance.
High throughput methods to confirm the potential of candidate genes for
Targets for herbicide, insect, fungal and viral disease resistance.
Resistance management strategies for transgenic crops and turfgrasses.
"Superweeds?" When and how to engineer containment factors into transgenic
crops and turfgrasses.
Laboratory Demonstrations of Methodology:
Database analysis, isolation of nucleic acids, PCR, vector construction,
plant tissue culture, gene transfer, characterization of transgenic plants
Papers: (each student will present one paper)
Molecular improvement of herbicide-, insect-, fungal- and viral disease
resistance in crops and turfgrasses
Risk assessment of transgenic crops
Case study on ethical aspects of transgenic crops:
Students will read and discuss conceptual papers reflecting the view on
ethical aspects of transgenic plants of a specific pro- or anti-GMO group
and will present this view (not their own) for further group discussion.
For further information, please contact:
Laboratory of Molecular Plant Physiology
University of Florida IFAS
PO Box 11O300
2191 McCarty Hall
Gainesville FL 32611-300
Tel.: 352 392 1823 ext. 204, 216 or 218
Fax: 352 392 7248
E-mail: [log in to unmask]