Università degli Studi di Napoli "Parthenope"

Teaching schedule

Academic year: 
Belonging course: 
Course of Bachelor's Degree Programme on BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES
Disciplinary sector: 
Year of study: 
First Semester
Hours of front activity: 



Course description

The educational objectives of the course of Genetics (6 cfu) are to provide the student with basic knowledge on the duplication, transmission and expression of genetic information at the level of prokaryotic, eukaryotic cells, individuals, and populations. Furthermore, it aims to provide essential information for the analysis of the genetic and molecular bases of the evolution and development of living organisms.
Knowledge and understanding: The student must demonstrate knowledge, understanding and reworking the molecular aspects studied during the course of Genetics in order to transform the knowledge learned in a more complex reflection and elaboration.
Ability to apply knowledge and understanding: The student must demonstrate the ability to use the concepts acquired even in areas other than those in which the knowledge learned of Genetics are traditionally used.
Autonomy of judgments: Students must be able to autonomously analyze what they have learned about the aspects of Genetics, in order to use the acquired knowledge as a starting point that allows them to achieve further results, characterized by an ever greater maturity and from an ever wider autonomy of judgment.
Communication skills: The student must have the ability, in a clear and complete way, to demonstrate the contents of the topics related to the course of Genetics using correctly the scientific language; communication must also be understandable to those who do not have specific preparation on the subject.
Learning skills: Attendance is a teaching aid with central importance; however, the student must be able to update himself continuously, through the consultation of texts and publications (also in English) in order to acquire the ability to deepen the topics in the field of Genetics.


No effective prerequisites are required for an effective course attendance. However the student must know the basic concepts of general and cellular biology, in particular those related to cell division. For the final exam, it is a prerequisite to have passed the Molecular Biology exam.


- Mendelian genetics. The laws of Mendel. Principles of probability calculation. Branched outline of crossings. Confirmation of the principle of segregation. Test crossing. Crossbreed of triibrids. Phenotypic classes and genotypic classes.
- Complementary test. Multiple alleles. Changes to dominance relationships. Incomplete dominance. ABO blood groups. Codominance. New phenotypes. Epistasis. Essential genes and lethal alleles. Gene expression and environment. Penetrance and expressiveness. Age of onset. Characters limited to sex. Characters influenced by sex Inheritance and environment. Chi-square test.
- Organization of the genome in chromosomes. Viral chromosomes. Chromosomes of prokaryotes. Eukaryotic chromosomes. Chromatin structure. Repetitive nucleotide sequences. Eucromatin and heterochromatin. The centromere. The telomere.
Genetic analysis in bacteria. Conjugation. Genetic maps for conjugation. Interrupted conjugation. Transformation. Griffith experiment. Avery experiment. Mapping for transformation. Transduction. Lentic and lysogenic cycle of the bacteriophage Lambda. Mapping of genes by transduction. Generalized and specialized transduction. Mapping of genes in phages. Fine map of the gene structure.
- Transposable elements. Procaryotic transposons. Replicative transposition. Conservative transposition. Eukaryotic transposons. Ac / Ds elements of Corn. Ty elements of yeast. Drosophila transposons. Human retrotransposons.
- Human chromosomes. The karyotype. The chromosomal banding. Chromosomal bands. In situ hybridization. High resolution FISH and FISH.
- Construction of genetic maps. The concept of genetic map. Three-point crossing. Interference and coincidence. Accurate calculation of the map distance. Analysis of tetrads. Mitotic recombination. Lod score method. Genetic map and physical distance.
- Hereditary transmission of characters. Analysis of genealogical trees. Recessive characters. Dominant characters. Sex chromosomes. Mechanisms for determining sex. Determination of sex in Drosophila. Determination of sex in mammals. Barr body. X-chromosome inactivation. X-chromosome-related inheritance. Y-chromosome-related inheritance. Alterations in chromosome number.
- Recombinant DNA techniques. Restriction enzymes. Cloning vectors. Plasmids. Essay of alpha complementation. Phages. Lambda bacteriophage. Cosmids. YAC. BAC. Recombinant DNA libraries. Radioactive DNA marking. DNA sequencing. Maxam and Gilbert method. Sanger method.
- Genetic polymorphism. Human Genome Project.
- Cancer genetics. Cell cycle control. Proto-oncogenes. Retroviruses and oncogenes. The tumor suppressor genes. Retinoblastoma. Breast cancer. Mutator genes. The stages of cancer.
- Chromosomal mutations. Genetic mosaicism. Structural anomalies. Deletions. Duplication. Reversals. Ring chromosome. Translocations. Dicentric chromosome. Isochromosome.
- Gene mutations. Silent, synonymous mutations, missense, non-sense and frameshift mutations. Mutations in splice sites. Causes of mutations. DNA repair.
- Developmental genetics. Development in Drosophila. Genes with a maternal effect. Segmentation genes. Homeotic genes. Types of hemoglobin and human development. Antibody molecules.
- Population genetics. Continuous or quantitative characters. The polygenic hypothesis. Statistical methods. The variance. The standard deviation. The correlation coefficient. Regression. Analysis of variance. Heritability. The selection. QTL.
- Regulation of gene expression in bacteria. Inducible genes. Model of Jocob and Monod. Positive control of the lac operon. Reprettable operons. The tryptophan operon. The model of attenuation.

The course of Genetics (6 cfu) provides the student with basic knowledge on the duplication, transmission and expression of genetic information at the level of prokaryotic, eukaryotic cells, individuals, and populations. Furthermore, it aims to provide essential information for the analysis of the genetic and molecular bases of the evolution and development of living organisms.

Teaching Methods

The Genetics course is divided into 48 hours of lectures. During the course some exercises are planned for the development of the problems of Genetics to be solved in the written test.


The slides of each lesson, and other teaching materials will be made available during the course in .pdf format on the e-learning site (http://e-scienzeetecnologie.uniparthenope.it).
The recommended texts are:
Principles of Genetics, D.P. Snustad, M.J. Simmons, EdiSES, V Edition - 2014

Learning assessment

During the course same tests are scheduled. The objective of the tests carried out is to allow the student to ascertain the actual acquisition of the knowledge of the lessons of the Genetics course. The tests carried out consist of 30 multiple choice questions concerning the theoretical contents of the course. The exam for foreign students can be taken in English.
The objective of the final exam is to verify the level of achievement of the previously indicated training objectives. The final exam is divided into 2 parts:
1) A written test in which the student is called to solve exercises on the laws of Mendel and its extents, on the chi-square test and on the calculation of the map distances by means of the 3-point crossing.
2) an oral test in which the ability to link and compare different aspects treated during the course will be evaluated.

More information

The teaching material is accessible in e-learning mode at the link http://e-scienzeetecnologie.uniparthenope.it
The reception time is Tuesday and Thursday from 10:00 to 13:00