From UBC Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Advances in Food Biotechnology
FOOD 521
Instructor: Dr. Simone Diego Castellarin
Dr. Vivien Measday
Office: #211-FNH Building (Dr. Castellarin)
#325-FNH Building (Dr. Measday)
Office Hours:
Class Schedule: 4-5:30 PM Wednesday in FNH 50
4-5:30 PM Friday in FNH 320
Classroom: FNH 50 & FNH 320


File:FOOD 521 Syllabus 2016.pdf

Course Description and Format

FOOD 521 is a topical course intended to provide an advanced understanding of key concepts and current applications of biotechnology in the production and processing of foods. The course utilizes lecturing, student-directed presentations and discussions to cover topics on recent advances in important areas of food biotechnology from an international perspective. The topics include genetic engineering, genome analysis, functional foods, bioconversion of food materials, as well as improvement of food quality and food safety.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, students will:

  • Be able to discuss how molecular biotechnology is being used to address major challenges associated with healthier and safer food production, and processing.
  • Develop an advanced understanding of current food biotechnologies with a focus on genetic engineering.
  • Be able to describe the fundamental principles in implementing biotechnologies in various aspects of food production and processing.
  • Improve oral communication through presentation and class-based discussion of food biotechnology.

Academic Integrity

You are expected to act in accordance with the University of British Columbia policy on academic integrity ( If you are unsure of appropriate behaviour, please consult the instructor.

Course Resources

Book chapters and journal articles will be selected from the books and journals listed below for the preparation of the lectures. These resources can be accessed online.

Reference textbooks:

- Fundamentals of Food Biotechnology. Byong H. Lee. John Wiley & Sons Inc. 2015. Print ISBN: 9781118384954; eBook ISBN: 9781118384947 (available from UBC Library website).
- Genetically Engineered Crops: Experiences and Prospects. Committee on Genetically Engineered Crops: Past Experience and Future Prospects; Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources; Division on Earth and Life Studies; National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The National Academies Press, Washington, DC. ; eBook ISBN 978-0-309- 43738-7 (available online).

===Journals:=== Common scientific journals will be: IFT Food Technology Magazine; Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry; Food Microbiology; Journal of Food Science; Applied and Environmental Microbiology; Microbial Biotechnology; Journal of Biotechnology; Trends in Food Science & Technology.


- Midterm 30%
- Group Project 30%
Oral presentation 15%
Written report 15%
-Final 35%
-Participation in discussion for group projects and in-class activities 5%

The course is composed of lectures, student presentation, and topical discussions. Evaluation will be based on (i) written examinations, (ii) presentations, and (iii) in-class participation. ===Mid-term and final examinations:=== The mid-term and final examinations are in class written examinations.

Group project:

Students will work in groups of two on a randomly assigned food biotechnology topic. Each group should submit a written report on this topic via the assignment section of the Connect site. The report is due at 12 PM Pacific Time by November 17, 2016. The written report should consist of 1,000- 1,500 words with proper citations using the APA Citation style. The reference list is excluded from the word count. All text should be Times New Roman 12-point font, double spaced. The last five classes will be dedicated to student presentations (20min for topic). It is expected that each student will present (10 minutes each). A class-based discussion (5 min) will follow the presentation. Details on the group presentation will be posted on Connect by the midterm date. Please make sure that you check Connect promptly for announcements and updated information.


Active participation to the class will be considered.

Group Project Topics

The project topics will be decided and assigned to the groups by September 30, 2016.

Schedule Term 1 (September – December 2016)

Lecture Date Topic
1 Sep 7 Course introduction and overview. Survey on student knowledge on biotechnologies (SDC&VM)
2 Sep 9 Review of role of biotechnology in food production (SDC)
3 Sep 14 Biotechnology in dairy industry: Fermented foods and starter culture I (Guest lecture by Dr. Azita Madadi- Noei)
4 Sep 16 Biotechnology in dairy industry: Fermented foods and starter culture II (Guest lecture by Dr. Azita Madadi- Noei)
5 Sep 21 Biotechnology in beverage industry: yeasts and fermentation (wine and beer). (VM)
6 Sep 23 Molecular Biology. DNA, RNA, and proteins. (VM)
7 Sep 28 Molecular Biology. Overview of bacterium, fungus, plant genomes (SDC)
8 Sep 30 Molecular Biology. Molecular tools/genetic engineering for food production and analysis – PCR, restriction digests, cloning, microsatellite (VM)
9 Oct 5 Molecular Biology. Protein engineering in food science. (Guest lecture by Dr. Rickey Yada)
10 Oct 7 Biotechnology in wine industry: Improvement of Saccharomyces yeast strains used in wine making (VM)
Oct 12 Midterm
11 Oct 14 Biotechnology in agriculture: Crop Breeding (SDC)
12 Oct 19 Biotechnology in agriculture: Genetic modification of crops (SDC)
13 Oct 21 Biotechnology in agriculture: CRISPR/Cas system (Guest lecture by Dr. Abel Rosado)
14 Oct 26 Aquatic/Animal food biotechnology. (VM)
15 Oct 28 Functional foods and nutraceuticals (Guest lecture by Dr. David Kitts)
16 Nov 2 Production of nutraceuticals in plants (SDC)
17 Nov 4 Example
18 Nov 9 Example
Nov 11 Remembrance Day
19 Nov 16 Discussion on food biotechnology and ethical issues (SDC&VM)
Nov 18 Food Biotechnology Topic I: Student Presentation
Nov 23 Food Biotechnology Topic II: Student Presentation
Nov 25 Food Biotechnology Topic IIII: Student Presentation
Nov 30 Food Biotechnology Topic IV: Student Presentation
Dec 2 Food Biotechnology Topic V: Student Presentation