BIO325 CRISPR Genome Editing

Credits (ECTS):10

Course responsible:Guro Katrine Sandvik

Campus / Online:Taught campus Ås

Teaching language:Engelsk

Limits of class size:Because we have limited capacity in the laboratory, this course will maximum take 40 students.

Course frequency:Annually

Nominal workload:250 hours.

Teaching and exam period:This course starts in Spring parallel. This course has teaching/evaluation in Spring parallel.

About this course

This course will give a thorough introduction to CRISPR technology through lectures, group teaching and hands-on lab experience. This course will give a solid background of CRISPR and the molecular mechanisms underlying this technique. Furthermore, the course will give an introduction to what CRISPR can be used for, delivery techniques, newer CRISPR methodology such as activation and repression of transcription, mRNA interference and various methods for knock-in. Also new Cas variants will be discussed, and CRISPR methods for labeling DNA, RNA, enrichment for sequencing etc. The course will also discuss methods for evaluating off-target effects and will also cover challenges and opportunities for CRISPR in different models, such as fish, mammal, plants, and bacteria, both whole organisms and cell cultures. The ethics around CRISPR technology and the laws in different countries will also be a subject in this course. In the lab course the students will get practical hands-on experience with CRISPR. They will learn to design gRNA targeting different genes, and they will make knock-in cells and knock-out fish embryos (e.g. zebrafish, salmon) and plants (e.g. Arabidopsis). Finally, they will analyze the effect of the CRISPR treatment with various molecular biology techniques. In addition to learning CRISPR, the students will also use many common molecular biology techniques, such as pcr, gel analysis, miniprep and DNA extraction. In addition, they will get experience in advanced techniques such as microinjection of fish embryos, cell culturing and transfection, and sequencing.

Learning outcome

Knowledge: The students will have knowledge about gene editing theory, mechanisms and history. They will also have overview of new gene editing techniques and the potential these techniques have for science, agri- and aquaculture. Moreover, they will have knowledge about regulation of CRISPR in Norway and in other countries, and which type of discussions that are going on around the use of this technique.

Skills: The students will be able to plan their own CRISPR experiment after completion of this course. They will be able to assess different methods and what kind of adjustments these needs to make them work in different organisms. The students will also be able to do CRISPR experiments with plants, fish and cells and assess the success of the gene editing. They will also be able to discuss the ethics around genome editing.

General competence: The students will be able to critically assess which way to use a genome editing technique to find knowledge about different genes in different species. Through theoretical training and discussions and reflections about ethical perspectives in the course, they will be able to contribute to a healthy debate in the society around this subject.

  • The course includes several learning methods. These include lectures, groupwork, lab work and colloquium teaching.

    One assignment is to plan a CRISPR experiment, design and evaluate gRNA for a gene the student is interested in, or a given gene The students will present their gene and the plan for CRISPR experiments and potential output.

  • Group teaching, colloquiums, and lab teaching with lecturers and PhD students with CRISPR expertise. A learning guide will be distributed with the curriculum and other resources. Lecturers and colloquium teachers are available during office hours for additional questions. Canvas
  • BIO120, BIO100
  • Collective assessment where the assignment counts 30 % and the final multiple on-campus exam counts 70 %. Lab reports must be approved to pass the course.

  • An external examiner will contribute to evaluation of the course set-up and/or grading of one of the assignments.
  • Lab exercises.
  • 100
  • Priority is given to students admitted to the Master program Genome Science (M-GS) because this is an obligatory course for them. Students admitted to the Master program Plant Sciences (specialization Biotechnology) are also given priority.
  • Special requirements in Science