BSc minor Plant Biotechnology (WUPBT)

The BSc Minor Plant Biotechnology covers all relevant topics in this academic field.

Continue to an overview of the courses in this minor

Building on general BSc-level knowledge on cell biology, genetics, plant physiology and molecular biology, students will be introduced into the principles of plant biotechnology, plant pathology, functional genomics, plant breeding, and the development and analysis of transgenic plants. This is followed by more in-depth training in the structure and function of genomes of prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms, genetic analysis to unravel biological phenomena, including adaptation, symbiosis and ageing. Relevant aspects of genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, transcriptomics and immunology will be treated in an integrated way.

Central to plant biotechnology is its applied character. Various applications are introduced, explained and trained in the projects and practicals that are included in the courses that make up this BSc minor. This includes, amongst others, the understanding of plant-pathogen interactions, the development of disease resistant plants, breeding for the improvement of quality characteristics, and analysis of the effects of various plant compounds on health.

This BSc minor is preparatory for the MSc Plant Biotechnology, and the MSc Plant Sciences, specializations Plant Breeding and Genetic Resources and Plant Pathology and Entomology.

NOTE: This minor contains courses with a maximum number of students participants. If you want to follow this minor as a "Bijvak or "exchange" student make sure you also choose alternative courses (and register these course in the form). That way you have an alternative if you cannot participate in this course. The information on if a course has a maximum number of participants can be found via the overview of the courses in the minor.

Learning Outcomes

After successful completion of this minor students are expected to be able to:

  • apply relevant laboratory techniques for gene isolation, plant transformation and analysis of gene expression patterns in transgenic plants;
  • realise the (im-)possibilities of the applications of plant biotechnology from a technical and societal point of view;
  • understand and be able to describe the general procedures of plant breeding programmes;
  • explain different strategies to prevent, control and fight plant pests and diseases (chemical, biological, by cultivation, through (molecular) resistance breeding);
  • understand the tools used for development of genetic, physical and sequence maps of prokaryotic and eukaryotic genomes, the relations between these maps and their specific application in genome mapping;
  • have a broad view on how genomic information provides a wealth of information on the organization, functioning and evolution of microbes, plants and animals;
  • have thorough understanding of the concepts of genetic transmission, genetic recombination, and comprehend the common strategies of genetic analysis;
  • develop strategies for biochemical pathway engineering to improve or alter the production of compounds having an effect on health and use, at a basic level, the '~omics' to unravel biochemical pathways and to make an inventory of compounds produced in plant species that are essential for medical use.

Target group

This minor is interesting for WU-students of the BSc programmes:

  • BBI Biology, except BBI-A
  • BBT Biotechnology
  • BML Molecular Life Sciences

Assumed Knowledge

For Bachelor and BSc Biology and/or Life Sciences programmes.

Overlapping courses or content with

  • BBI-A Biology – major Cell and Molecular Biology
  • BPW-A Plant Sciences- major Plant Genomics and Health




First semester (period 1, 2 and 3)

Programme or thematic

Programme minor