Module Details

Module Code: AGRI S9Z05
Full Title: Animal Biotechnology
Valid From:: Semester 1 - 2019/20 ( June 2019 )
Language of Instruction:English
Duration: 1 Semester
Credits:: 7.5
Module Owner:: Caroline Gilleran
Departments: Unknown
Module Description: This module aims to provide students with an understanding of how biotechnology can provide new tools for improving animal health, enhancing animal reproduction and increasing livestock productivity. This module also aims to provide students with a knowledge of the genetic engineering of animals and an appreciation of the legislative and ethical considerations of using such innovative biotechnological approaches.
Module Learning Outcome
On successful completion of this module the learner will be able to:
# Module Learning Outcome Description
MLO1 Critically evaluate advanced and innovative biotechnologies utilised in animal reproduction and demonstrate practical competence in this area.
MLO2 Assess and evaluate the impact of biotechnological technologies on animals health and productivity.
MLO3 Critically assess and synthesise existing and emerging technologies in the area of genetic engineering of animals.
MLO4 Appraise and reflect on current legislation and constructively criticise the ethical, social and biosafety implications raised by the genetically engineering of animals in agriculture.
Pre-requisite learning
Module Recommendations
This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is strongly recommended before enrolment in this module. You may enrol in this module if you have not acquired the recommended learning but you will have considerable difficulty in passing (i.e. achieving the learning outcomes of) the module. While the prior learning is expressed as named DkIT module(s) it also allows for learning (in another module or modules) which is equivalent to the learning specified in the named module(s).
No recommendations listed
Module Indicative Content
Reproductive Biotechnology
Artificial Insemination (AI); Embryo transfer and in vitro fertilization; livestock cloning; Genetic and biochemical aspects of embryo development and viability; Biotech approaches to oestrous detection; Biotech approaches to sperm sexing in cattle.
Biotechnology and Animal Health
Biotech based vaccines; Rapid biotech based diagnostic tests for infectious disease; Molecular-based typing of pathogens to monitor spread of disease within and between herds and trace the source of disease; Genetic analysis of animal pathogens.
Biotechnology and Animal Growth
Improved feed, hormones and other biotech products that enhance animal size, productivity and growth rates. Sample case study: Synthetic hormone bST (bovine somatotropin) used in the U.S. to increase milk yield in lactating cows.
Transgenic animals
Genetic engineering of animals. Recombinant protein production in transgenic animals. Pharmaceutical, industrial and agricultural applications. Sample case study: Production of human antithrombin in transgenic goats.
Risk assessment and Legislation
Risk assessment of GMOs with regard to biosecurity and food safety; The importance of Quality Control and traceability in GMO food-production; The risks associated with GMOs in the food-chain; Legislation and 'best practice' regarding GMO feedstocks, GMO labeling, GMO traceability etc.
Ethical issues
Ethical aspects of the biotechnology industry, especially with regard to GM animals and the introduction of GM organisms in the food-chain.
Module Assessment
Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work40.00%
Final Examination60.00%
Module Special Regulation


Full Time On Campus

Course Work
Assessment Type Continuous Assessment % of Total Mark 10
Marks Out Of 0 Pass Mark 0
Timing Week 7 Learning Outcome 1,2,3,4
Duration in minutes 0
Assessment Description
Learning outcomes will be assessed synoptically with those of the "Food Biotechnology" module. The synoptic assignment will be worth 20% overall - with 10% counted towards each module. Students will complete a report, debate and/or discussion on aspects of GM foods/GMOs and relevant social issues. This assessment will cover one or more of the Learning Outcomes for each of the modules involved (e.g. essay on GMO legislation, a group report on current use of a biotechnology application in food production, a presentation and discussion on ethical issues of GMOs or a similarly relevant assessment).
No Project
Assessment Type Practical/Skills Evaluation % of Total Mark 30
Marks Out Of 0 Pass Mark 0
Timing n/a Learning Outcome 1
Duration in minutes 0
Assessment Description
A.I. Technical practical course, demonstrate competency in a skills based assessment and MCQ test.
Final Examination
Assessment Type Formal Exam % of Total Mark 60
Marks Out Of 0 Pass Mark 0
Timing End-of-Semester Learning Outcome 1,2,3,4
Duration in minutes 0
Assessment Description
End of semester final examination
Reassessment Requirement
A repeat examination
Reassessment of this module will consist of a repeat examination. It is possible that there will also be a requirement to be reassessed in a coursework element.

DKIT reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload

Workload: Full Time On Campus
Workload Type Contact Type Workload Description Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload Hours
Lecture Contact This module will consist of 3hrs each week for lectures or practicals (two 3hr practicals per semester) Every Week 2.50 2.5
Tutorial Contact Tutorials will be used to support lectures / practicals Every Second Week 0.50 1
Online Contact Contact On-line discussion forum Every Week 0.50 0.5
Practical Contact This module will contain two 3hr practicals per semester, instead of lectures Twice per semester 0.00 0
Independent Study Non Contact No Description Every Week 5.00 5
Directed Reading Non Contact No Description Every Week 3.00 3
Total Weekly Learner Workload 11.50
Total Weekly Contact Hours 3.50
This module has no Part Time On Campus workload.
Module Resources
Recommended Book Resources
  • T. A. Brown. (2010), Gene Cloning and DNA Analysis: An Introduction, 6th ed.. Wiley.
  • T. A. Brown. (2011), Introduction to Genetics: A Molecular Approach, Garland Science.
  • A.S. Verma, A. Singh. (2014), Animal Biotechnology: Models in Discovery and Translation, Academic Press.
Recommended Article/Paper Resources
  • Current research publications from peer-reviewed journals will be used as additional material.
Other Resources