BRM5011 - Foundations for medical biotechnology and its applications - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Chief examiner(s)

Professor Graham Lieschke


Dr Chau Khuong

Unit guides



  • Second semester 2019 (On-campus)


Master of Biotechnology


This unit discusses the fundamentals of human body systems, including cellular, developmental, immunological and haematological processes, and the application of knowledge of these processes in medical biotechnology.

The molecular and cellular basis of common diseases affecting important organs and/or parts of our body will be presented in the context of designing better therapeutic approaches for these disorders.

Moreover, the unit covers the basic rules of animal regeneration to unlock regenerative potential in patients for treatment of a range of currently untreatable disorders, and discusses the manipulation of cell populations in the body to help tissues repair more effectively.

The response of organs after injuries and/or diseases, and the innate regenerative potential that exists for these organs in mammals is examined.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Apply knowledge of the fundamentals of developmental biology and genetics to explain the development of important organ systems
  2. Relate knowledge of neuroscience, haematology, immunology, muscles, heart and bones to the development of medical applications
  3. Identify the basic rules that govern formation of organ stem cells in the embryo and adult and analyse their role in organ regeneration
  4. Discuss on the importance of haematological and immunological systems in regenerative medicine
  5. Demonstrate the molecular mechanisms of tissue injuries and repair processes
  6. Justify contemporary approaches and incentives to treat challenging diseases and injuries of the neural, cardiac, musculoskeletal systems


  • Workshop and practical exercises (30%)
  • Research proposal (1,500 words) (20%)
  • Oral presentation (20 minutes) (20%)
  • Tests (30%)

Workload requirements

4 contact hours (2 hour seminar and 2 hour practical/ tutorial)

8 hours of private study (expected to be spent on assignments, and designated pre-class and post-class learning activities to prepare for classes and consolidate knowledge.

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study