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Medical Diagnostics (LF909)


This module introduces the students to the scientific principles underpinning the format and application of biotechnologically based diagnostics assays and technologies. The focus is on medical diagnostics. The aim
is to give the students a clear understanding of medically oriented diagnostics and the role of biotechnology in realising the clinical and commercial potential.


Principle Learning Outcomes

To develop an understanding of the scientific basis underpinning medical diagnostic assays and technologies and the associated biotechnological principles leading to clinical use and commercial implementation.



Current diagnostic techniques re. microbes, viruses, prions
“Omics”: genomics; transcriptomics; proteomics; metabolomics - their use as diagnostic assays
Immunoassays in biotechnology: immunoassay formats; microarrays; immunosensors; microimmunoassays; “lab on a chip”.
Molecular approaches to diagnosis: Nucleic acid based assays: robotyping; PCR based assays; micorarrays and checkerboard hybridization.
Diagnosis and therapeutics via use of microarrays for microbial community analysis and toxicity screening.
Flow cytometry: diagnostic applications.
Biological imaging: superresolution (light and electron) microscopy; probe specific targeting; nanoparticle labelling. Mechanics of movement (Gate lab).
Multifunctional biosensor development and manufacture – olafactory and organoleptic sensors.
Stem cell research and molecular markers in medicine.
Mass spectrometry as a diagnostic technique – characterisation of intact biomolecules.Cancer cell detection and physiological assessment.
Forensic molecular biology: application of DNA and RNA technologies.