Course detail

Introduction to Molecular Biology and Genetics

FEKT-BPC-MOLAcad. year: 2021/2022

Introduction to Molecular Biology and Genetics provides students with knowledge about the basics of contemporary biomedicine based on a dynamically evolving scientific knowledge and combined with the involvement of technical (especially material) and chemical sciences. Annually updated lecture course begins with more detailed approximation of the structure and function of eukaryotic cells, continues lectures on the expression and regulation of genes, protein metabolism, cell signaling and interactions between cells and ends with a series of lectures on current trends in biomedical research and its potentials in human medicine. The final series of lectures focuses on stem cells and cell therapy, tissue engineering, cancer biology, structural and functional genomics, genetic engineering and molecular diagnostics. Lectures are supplemented by practical training, always thematically corresponding to the lectures.

Language of instruction


Number of ECTS credits


Mode of study

Not applicable.


Faculty of Medicine, Masaryk University Brno (LF MU)

Learning outcomes of the course unit

After completion of the course, students are introduced to and have a basic knowledge of:
Structure and function of eukaryotic cells
Transfer of genetic information, its regulation and possibilities of using the knowledge from the human molecular genetics in medicine, including genetic engineering and molecular diagnostics
Tumor cell transformation and possible strategies for cancer treatment
Stem cell biology and tissue engineering contexts and cell therapy
The structure and organization of the human genome and the mechanisms of DNA damage and repair in respect of the stability of the genome and the development of genetic diseases.


Students should have a good foundation of general human biology from high school. Furthermore, the course assumes a general knowledge from the chemistry and the ability to understand the connection between biology, genetics and technically oriented disciplines that are essential for the development of new biomedical technologies.


Not applicable.

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

The course is based on both structured lectures that summarize the basic principles of biological phenomena in the context of current scientific knowledge of the topic or field of science and on the practical classes where students in the experiment or seminar demonstrated illustrating the details of most lectures. Lectures are not generally based on the textbook but data draws from the recent journal literature, often published by the lecturers themselves. Practical interactive lessons draws from the experimental work of guaranteed department.

Assesment methods and criteria linked to learning outcomes

The final exam is in the form of the multiple choice test. Each test contains three questions of the 15 thematic sections, both from the lectures and practical exercises. Examination is aimed at testing the basic knowledge and concepts from the molecular biology and genetics.

Course curriculum

cellular organization of living systems
structure and function of cell organelles
transfer and regulation of genetic information
synthesis and metabolism of proteins
cell membrane and energy metabolism of cells
cell nucleus and chromosome structure
cytoskeletal apparatus of cells
cell cycle and mitosis
intercellular interactions and cell signaling
stem cells and cell therapy strategies
tumor cell transformation
basics of Mendelian genetics
DNA damage and repair in respect of the stability of the genome
genetic engineering and basics of molecular diagnostics

Work placements

Not applicable.


The goal is to educate students in the areas of cell and molecular biology and genetics with an overlap in the development of new (bio)technologies and strategies related to human health.

Specification of controlled education, way of implementation and compensation for absences

Extent and forms are specified by guarantor´s regulation updated for every academic year. Attendance at lectures is prerequisite for the successful completion of the course due to their annual update. Practical exercises are mandatory.

Recommended optional programme components

Not applicable.

Prerequisites and corequisites

Not applicable.

Basic literature

Přehled středoškolské biologie LF MU ( (CS)
Animace a doprovodné texty k jednotlivým tématům ( (CS)
ALBERTS, Bruce et al. Základy buněčné biologie: úvod do molekulární biologie buňky. 2. vyd. Ústí nad Labem: Espero 
Publishing, 2006. ISBN 80-902906-2-0. 

Recommended reading

Not applicable.

Classification of course in study plans

  • Programme BPC-BTB Bachelor's, 1. year of study, summer semester, compulsory
  • Programme BIT Bachelor's, 2. year of study, summer semester, elective

  • Programme IT-BC-3 Bachelor's

    branch BIT , 2. year of study, summer semester, elective

Type of course unit



26 hours, optionally

Teacher / Lecturer


1. Cellular organisation of living systems
2. Cellular memory
3. Transcription
4. Translation
5. Genetic expression control
6. DNA replication
7. Biomembranes and energy transformation
8. Transport of substances
9. Organisation of cellular core
10. Cytoskelet and molecular engines
11. Cellular cycle
12. Cellular signalling
13. Clone and stem cells

Laboratory exercise

26 hours, compulsory

Teacher / Lecturer


1. Bacteria viruses: bacteriophage plaque, determination of the bacteriophage titre.
2. Procaryontic cells: native mounts of fungi , Gram coloring – permanent bacteria mounts.
3. Eucaryontic cells, cytochemical methods for study of cells: Protoyoa, Elodea – preparation of native mounts. Feulgen’s reaction, RNA coloring, Gram’s coloring.
4. Tissue and cellular cultures: the basic principles of cultivation, cryoconservation, collections, applications.
5. Electron microscopy: the principle of the ELM method, methods of preparation of mounts, demonstration –the transmission and scanning electron microscope, the free-etching apparatus, evaluation of ELM images
6. Radioactive isotopes in cellular biology: the principle of utilisation of compounds marked with isotopes, utilisation of radioisotopes for research of specific inhibitors – evaluation of experimental studies, autoradiographical methods – the principle.
7. Impact of deep freezing on cells.Viability tests, detection of membrane integrity disorders (yeast, animal and human cells in vitro), quantitative determination of living and dead cells.
8. Cytotoxicity testing methods – impact of deep freezing on yeast cells, practical applications, in vitro systems, evaluation of the experiment with in vitro testing on human cells.
9. Biomembranes: structure and functions, fusion of cells – an experiment on human and chicken erytrocytes, osmotic effects – an experiment on human erytrocytes, applications (dialysis, fusion of cells – hybridomic technology).
10. Analysis of the cellular cycle: cdc yeast mutants – monitoring of the morphological changes during the cellular cycle, analysis of the growth curve (human cells in vitro, yeast), flow cytometry – the principle, evaluation of histograms.
11. Mitotic division. Coloring of chromosomes, monitoring of permanent mounts – plant meristemes, human lymphocytes.
12. Methods of cellular research (seminar)
13. Internet sources for biomedical research: sources for cellular biology (tissue and line banks, antibodies, catalogs), instruction resources and biomedical information portals, publication databases.