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Brassica oleracea Cultivars (Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Sprouts)
Genetically Modified Food - What's the Gripe?/R.S. Callow
This course is available to interested societies and groups on request.
Introduction. Genetic modification of our food has aroused much public concern in recent times. This concern is fuelled by misrepresentation and ignorance of the processes involved. The course will address these issues, informing participants and equipping them with the means to arrive at their own informed judgements.
Course Outline. The aims of this course are to examine the modes of genetic modification and to explore the implications of genetically modified food for human society. Each session will begin with a presentation, describing the evidence and reasoning behind a scientific topic. It will be followed by a discussion of topical issues relevant to the talk. Your participation will be encouraged. We shall begin with an examination of the genetic material and its role in reproduction, inheritance and development. We shall then consider how this material has and may be modified and how the modification of our food has shaped human history and is likely to determine human survival. Talks will be supported by supplementary notes and by Power-Point presentations which will include graphical and textual evidence. Discussions will be informed by the talks, recommended books and supplementary notes issued in advance. Students will be encouraged to prepare for topics under debate, to form their own views and to discuss them with others. No specialist knowledge will be assumed.
1. Sexual and Asexual reproduction Breeds, Cultivars and Clones
2. Cells and Chromosomes Chemicals and Cancer
3. Chromosomes and Genes Jumping Genes
4. Genes and DNA Mutants and Mutation
5. Genes and Development Diet and Disease
6. The History of Genetic Modification Culture and Cultivation
7. Natural and Artificial Selection Feast and Famine
8. Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Nutritional Needs
9. Genetically Engineered Foods Frankenstein Food
10. Costs and Benefits of GE Foods Green Food
As a result of this course, it should be possible for you to:
1. Understand the origin and causes of genetic variation;
2. Appreciate the importance of agriculture in human history;
3. Evaluate traditional and modern breeding methods;
4. Assess the costs and benefits of genetically modified food.
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