Interested in a career in biotechnology? - Université d'Ottawa

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BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


1






Table of Contents
:


1. General information about the course...................................................................page 2
-
3


2. Marking
Scheme...................................................................................................pages 4
-
5


3.
List of potential NSERC/Seminar topics
..............................................................pages 6
-
7


4.
How to give a seminar.
.
.........................................................................................pages 8
-
9


5. Examples of Abstracts
...........................................................................................pages 10
-
1
3


6. How to prepare an NSERC g
rant for this course
...................................................pages
14
-
18





Students are
invited
to submit a short personal biography and photo. I learn about
y
ou
r
background and
become
better
acquainted with
you
on a personal level
. In
addition, if
you ask for a letter of recommendation at a later date, I have a reminder of who you are.

This is entirely optional
-
you can submit a biography plus photo or biography without
photo or neither.





BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


2



C
ourse Objectives


"Topics in Biotechnology"
is a lecture/seminar course designed to introduce you to
Biotechnology from the basic to the applied. The basic techniques used in molecular cloning will be
described during the introductory lectures along with examples of how the technology is used. More
advanced work will be introduced during student seminars and by guest lecturers.


By the end of the course you should be able to




Understand the basic cloning strategies and why they are used;



Through the seminar programme, gain an appreciation for a broad

range of research areas within
biotechnology and some aspects of the business of biotechnology;



Through class discussions

and writings
, learn how biotechnology interacts with society.



Develop and write your own research applications. You can use them to e
nter competitions!


Outline of Materials to be Covered




vectors and their use



expression of foreign proteins (bacteria, fungi, plants, baculovirus)



targeting proteins to cellular compartments



bioremediation &...
(if there is time)


Contact Information

Office:

New Biosciences Complex III
,

GDN 256

Phone:


613
-
562
-
5800
-
6347

E
-
Mail:

johnson@uottawa.ca

(I
nclude the course code
BIO4174

in the subject line
)


Office Hours:
By appointment
.
I will set up a timetable for
discussion of grant applications.


Lecture Time and Location:

(Sep. 5
-

Dec. 5)



Thursday


LEC


14:30
-
16:00


Simard Hall (SMD)



Room: 422



Tuesday


LEC


16:00
-
17:30


Simard Hall (SMD)



Room: 422


Course Materials

Can Be Downloaded Through


http://www.courseweb.uottawa.ca/BIO4174


Interested in a career in biotechnology? Why not start at Biotalent Canada!


http://www.biotalent.ca/default_e.asp



BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


3


It is the policy of the Department of Biology that the following
Faculty Regulations be stated in the
Course Handouts


A
ttendance



Please be aware of the Faculty regulations concerning absences from examinations and other
tests as described on the Faculty of Science web page. It is the policy of the Department of Biolo
gy that
these regulations are enforced and that this policy be explicitly stated in the course outlines.


P
lagiarism



Students should be clear as to the meaning of plagiarism. You may copy a short section of one or
two lines from another publication if th
e material copied is in quotation marks and referenced. If you
copy extensively or without attribution, this is PLAGIARISM and will be heavily penalized. The
penalties may include total loss of the mark. For a general discussion on what is acceptable, look

at the
Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website

( http://www.uottawa.ca/plagiarism.pdf ).


P
enalties


The
l
ate
p
enalty for
m
issing a
deadline is 10
% of the
a
ssigned
m
ark per
working Day. Thus is the mark
was originally 40%, the loss is 4 mark
s per day.


A form for medical deferments can be found on the Faculty of Science WEB page.


For students in need of learning support



Students,

who require accommodations or academic support because of a physical or learning
disability, or any condition that affects their ability to learn, are invited to register with


Access Service

In person:


UCU 339

Telephone:


562
-
5976

TTY:



562
-
5214

E
-
mail:

adapt@uottawa.ca

Web:



www.sass.uottawa.ca


BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


4


MARKING SCHEME




Mid
-
term (1.25 hour)

25
%




Seminar


20%



Class Participation

10%



Proposal


45%


M
arking Scheme Expanded


When presenting material, the
majority of the work chosen must be published within the last 3 years.



Read the literature! There are biotechnology
-
oriented journals that can be read, e.g., "Trends in
Biotechnology", "Biotechnology" and most molecular 'journals will have relevant mate
rial. Also there
are relevant books in the library, many purchased within the last year. The Library has electronic access
to major journals at
http://www.biblio.uottawa.ca/section
-
home.php?g=en&s=biblio&c=home


And there is the
INTERNET
!

With the Interne
t it is

buyer beware


so always o go back to the
original sources in
PEER
-
REVIEWED JOURNALS
.


Midterm



The midterm on
will cover all materials in
the lectur
es
.

There will be choice.


Sample
Midterm
questions


1.
What defines your choice of vector?

Discuss.

2.
Why not use
E. coli

for all cloning experiments?

3. What factors should guide your choice of protein localization.


Hints:



If you don’t know the answer, go on to answer a questions you do know first! Get some marks.

1.

Answers may include anno
tated figures or cartoons.

2.

You may answer in point form but paragraphs are better.

3.

If the question asks you to devise an experiment,
start with a statement of what the experiment
attempts of prove and description.

4.

It is better to describe 2 experiments th
oughtfully rather than 4 superficially.

5.

Provide a summary statement.


BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


5


NSERC
Proposal



The central part of the course is for you to develop a grant proposal on a topic that interests you.
The same topic will be central to your seminar. You will present
several times during the course and
receive feedback. We will also review examples of previous submission and receive hints from seminar
speakers. Past p
roposals have been modified and used in competitions such at




iGEM



Student Technology Venture Challeng
e

(
$10,000
)



TD Canada Trust “$100,000 Go Green Challenge”


Seminar



The material for the seminar will be derived from your background reading done for your
proposal. It is an opportunity to




inform your colleagues/peers about the topic you find so interes
ting



organize your thoughts



receive feedback about your proposal prior to actually handing it in.



All students will write a report on each
external
seminar as part of their participation
mark
. Within 20 lines they must summarize the topic and provide
answers to the five questions
below.





why is this important?



how can biotechnolog
y help to solve these problems?



do their experiments justi
fy their approach and optimism?



where is the field going in the future, AND



what is going on in Canada?



All students will write a report on
the student
seminar
s

a
s part of their participation mark
.
Within 20 lines they must summarize the topic
and provide
ONE great
suggestion for improving
the NSERC proposal.
If there are a large number of seminars I may di
vide the work up by having
groups review only one of the speakers. For example I could ask half the class to report of speaker
1 and the other half on speaker 2.



This will be sent to the professor
before 8:30am

t
he Monday following the seminar.

Send it
w
ithin the E
-
mail, NOT as an attachment.


BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


6


This list is not an exhaustive one, but outlines some general suggestions for your seminar and
poster topics. Once a topic has been chosen and registered, then a schedule will be prepared.
Register
your choice
(and a second in case it has been chosen) by E
-
mail to johnson@uottawa.ca


SEMINARS WILL BE PRESENTED IN THE ORDER THAT THE TOPICS ARE LISTED!


MEDICAL BIOTECHNOLOGY

M
-
1.
Somatic and
Germ line therapy

M
-
2.
Targeting proteins for degradation: a therapy for

neurological diseases

M
-
3.
Antibody mimics

and their use in therapy.

M
-
4. Production of blood products by genetic engineering.

M
-
5. Synthetic oligonucleotides: potential as therapeutic agents.

M
-
6. Production of human hormones.

M
-
7. Antisense RNA or RNAi
and its use in medical therapy.

M
-
8.
Molecular approaches to the study of parasitic diseases.

M
-
9.
Towards a rational drug design (protein or DNA level).

M
-
10. Biomaterials
.


AGRICULTURAL BIOTECHNOLOGY

A
-
1.
Engineering plants to change photosynthsis

A
-
2.
E
ngineering inoculants for improved plant growth.

A
-
3. Engineering plants for future environments

A
-
4.
Plants as chemical factories (plastics, oils, chemicals).

A
-
5. Improving plant nutrition.

A
-
6. Biotechnology and the forestry industry.

A
-
7. New sources o
f insect resistance (beyond BT)

A
-
8. Engineering improved fungal resistance in transgenic plants.

A
-
9. "BIOPharming"
-
transgenic plants expressing pharmaceuticals..

A
-
10. "BIOPharming"
-
transgenic farm animals expressing pharmaceuticals.


IMPROVING
TECHNOLOGIES

I
-
1. Metabolic engineering.

I
-
2. Can genomics imp
rove vaccine production?

I
-
3.
Turning waste into value
-
added products

I
-
4.
Biofuels

I
-
5. Novel uses for Antibodies in diagnostics

I
-
6. Proteins from bacteria living in extreme environments.

I
-
7.

Protein engineering: improving enzymes.

I
-
8. Biotechnology and the food industry
.

I
-
9
. I
ndividual
ized medicine
s.

I
-
1
0
.Metagenomics: clues from sequencing a world of microorganisms.



BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


7


ENVIRONMENTAL TECHNOLOGIES

E
-
1. The release of recombinant organisms: en
vironmental aspects.

E
-
2. Molecular techniques in conservation biology.

E
-
3. "Bioremediation": engineering of bacteria for waste control.

E
-
4.

Biog
eochemistry”: can iron dumping control global warming?

E
-
5. Identification of individuals, populations and s
pecies.

E
-
6. Insect control by recombinant means.

E
-
7.

Biomining

: biotechnology and the recovery of minerals

E
-
8. Bioengineered organisms to detect pollutants or land mines.

E
-
9. Biotechnology and clean fuels.


OTHERS

O
-
1.

Toxicity testing: alternatives to animals.

O
-
2. Biotechnology:
do patents block innovation?

O
-
3. Ethics of mass screening programmes.

O
-
4. BIO
-
Fear and GMOs.

O
-
5. Biotechnology targeted to agriculture in LDCs

(Lesser Developed Countries)

O
-
6
. Biotechnolog
y targeted to industry in LDCs

O
-
7
. Biotechnology targeted to medicine in LDCs


There are
hundreds

of possible topics to stir your imagination (and thicken your wallet).
Therefore we will allow you to pick “
topic of your choice with permission of instruct
or".
Or why not
take a contrary position?


THE SEMINAR
(for BIO4174)


In order to prepare a good proposal you will need to do background reading in the area you have
chosen.
The seminar will give an overview of the subject
that you have chosen
while at the same time
describing a few chosen experiments at the cutting edge. I am testing both your breadth and depth on the
topic!
The level of the seminar should be towards a 4
th

year student in biotechnology (not the prof!!) as
should the quality of
the Powerpoint slides.


You must submit an Abstract before the end of October so I can post all of them on the WEB
site.
Your one page
A
bstract will be followed by a list of
2
-
3
key references.



What information you chose to present and how you present it

is up to you. But I will be asking
myself these questions when I mark.




why is this
topic
important
?



did you understand the subject?



could you present the information coherently to the class?



were the two experiments that you chose to present important an
d why?

BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


8




was the experiment (hypothesis, data, conclusion) well described?



were the experimental results integrated into the background given in the Introduction?



did you propose future experiments and explain why the ones chosen are important?



did the class

understand the seminar?


I will
try to
schedule two seminars per class so that the
class
will have time for their questions or
comments. You can use their feedback to help you to improve your final proposal.
Your seminar should
not be too long or too shor
t. Your mark will suffer if you take up more than 30 minutes (aim for 25 and
time yourself), if

you cannot answer questions or if you read your seminar from your slides.



Remember that all students will be writing a 10 line report on each seminar, so you
should aim to
answer these questions within the context of the seminar format.



why is this important?



how can biotechnolog
y help to solve these problems?



do their experiments justi
fy their approach and optimism?



where is the field going in the future, AND



what is going on in Canada?


Your seminar should also tell us about your NSERC proposal so that I can collect
helpful suggestions from the class that you can use to improve your proposal.



I have listed below some comments on presenting a good seminar,
gathered over the years
from my 4
th

year courses and the honours seminar series.



What Makes a Good Seminar?


Organization

-
should be straightforward and logical

-
include a brief introductory summary of what will be covered

-
provide sufficient background

to help the audience understand the relevance

-
use lots of visual aids (flow charts are often useful, esp. for methods)

-
at the end, recap main findings with conclusions and
take
-
home

message *


Clarity

-
speak clearly and audibly

-
make the objectives and

rationale clear; state them at the outset

-
relate the work to the larger context

-
provide a clear take
-
home message (taking no more than a few sentences)

-
be sure you understand the work


Visual aids

BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


9


-
use text slides to summarize major points *

-
use diagr
ams to illustrate protocols/results; if necessary redraw them (photocopies from articles
are generally too small)*

-
slides (overheads) should not be too cluttered *

-
details large enough to see clearly (font size 24 pts. minimum)


Content

-
make sure there
is sufficient review of background material

-
be selective in the material you present (every detail of a paper need not be presented)

-
provide enough material for the audience to follow, but don't bore them with trivial details

-
emphasize what you feel are

the major points

-
evaluate the material critically; don't be afraid to offer alternatives to interpretations


Delivery

-
give your presentation a trial run to see if it is too long or short

-
do not read or recite from memory

-
avoid nervous mannerisms

but
show enthusiasm for the topic

-
try to provoke questions and discussion

-
be prepared to respond to questions


* points we feel, from previous experience, deserve particular attention.



Instructions:



The Abstract should be a summary of the highlights of y
our essay (length ~ 150 words
, 12pt,
2cm margins
). It must include the reference that you entered into the signup sheet and up to two other
important references.
In your Abstract you must include specific information about the topic and the
paper, not simply writing generalities.



In addition you must link your paper to material discussed in class.


YOU ARE ALLOWED ONLY ONE PAGE FOR AN ABSTRACT


Help in writing a
n Abstract:




Google Writing an Abstract for lots of help. Focus on suggestions for a scientific paper.



See the example
s

on the next page from different courses.



Principles and applications of RNA interference


Name:

BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


10





RNA inte
r
ference (RNAi) is a method of post
-
transcriptional gene silencing through cleavage of
a particular mRNA by a specific cellular mechanism. Major breakthrough in understanding the process
of RNAi was achieved by studying C. elegans [1]. There are naturally

occurring genes that transcribe
60
-
70 bp RNA molecules that fold into hairpin structures (shRNA) [2]. These hairpin RNAs are
transported into the cytoplasm where a protein called Dicer cleaves them into smaller 21
-
23 base pair
RNAs (siRNA) [3]. These si
RNAs are then recruited by a ribonucleoprotein complex called RISC [4].
Sequence driven homology of the siRNAs to a target mRNA induces RISC to cleave this mRNA
preventing translation of the message. Exogenous siRNAs introduced into the cell cytoplasm ca
n also
mediate gene silencing using this pathway. This process of gene silencing is a powerful tool to study
gene expression and can be used in gene therapy. The goals of this
essay
are to present a detailed
mechanistic picture of RNAi process, discuss t
he two general approaches to siRNA delivery (direct
siRNA delivery or shRNA gene expression), and examine the current advantages and limitations of
RNAi. Applications of RNAi in treating genetic disorders, cancer diseases and viral diseases will be
explai
ned. Selected studies (including Canadian studies [5,6]) will be presented as examples to illustrate
the use of RNAi in treatment of cancer and viral diseases.


References:

[1] Fire et al. (1998). Potent and specific genetic interference by double
-
strande
d RNA in
Caenorhabditis elegans. Nature 391: 806

11

[2] Lee et al. (2003). The nuclear RNase III Drosha initiates microRNA processing. Nature 425: 415
-
419.

[3] Zhang et al. (2004). Single processing center models for human Dicer and bacterial RNase III
, Cell
118 57

68.

[4] Tang. (2005). siRNA and miRNA: an insight into RISCs, Trends Biochem. Sci. 30 106

114.

[5] Smith et al. (2005). Silencing of epidermal growth factor receptor suppresses hypoxia
-
inducible
factor
-
2
-
driven VHL
-
/
-

renal cancer.

Cancer Re
s. Jun 15;65(12):5221
-
30.

[6] Wilson et al.
(2003). RNA interference blocks gene expression and RNA synthesis from hepatitis C
replicons propagated in human liver cells, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 100 2783

2788.

BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


11




Plant ABC Transporters


Name:


Plant ABC transporters are among a large superfamily of proteins involved in the energetic
transport of compounds across membranes. The Arabidopsis sequence provided a means to identify 129
such members, which range in structure and function. Originally
discovered as multi
-
drug resistance
proteins in mammals, these proteins were initially studied as detoxifiers in plant cells. This is evident by
the roles in transport of xenobiotics and heavy metals. However, recent research suggests a broad range
of fu
nction in several plant processes. These include auxin transport, stomata regulation and lipid
transport. Some of the research has turned to the transport of secondary metabolites. Such metabolites
contain very specific functions and are often found in
only one or a few species of plants. These
metabolites must be localized to particular tissues, and compartmentalized in the cell to achieve proper
function and avoid toxicity to the plant. The study of ABC transporters in these processes in novel
model
organisms is the focus of a set of recent papers. These include the discovery of the CjMDR1
gene from
Coptis japonica
,

which transports berberine into the rhizome of the plant, and the
involvement of an ABC transporter in the exudation of genistein by soy
bean roots.

Shitan N., Bazin I., Dan K., Obata K., Kigawa K., Ueda K., Sato F., Forestier C., and Yazaki K.

(2003). Involvement of CjMDR1, a plant multidrug
-
resistance
-
type ATP
-
binding cassette protein, in
alkaloid transport in
Coptis japonica
.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A.

100,
751
-
756.

Otani M., Shitan N., Sakai K., Martinoia E., Sato F., and Yazaki K.

(2005). Characterization of
vacuolar transport of the endogenous alkaloid berberine in
Coptis japonica
. Plant Physiol.

138,
1939
-
1946.

Sugiya
ma A., Shitan N., and Yazaki K.

(2007). Involvement of a soybean ATP
-
binding cassette
-
type
transporter in the secretion of genistein, a signal flavonoid in legume
-
Rhizobium symbiosis. Plant
Physiol.

144,
2000
-
2008.

BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


12


Biosynthesis of anticancer monoterpene i
ndole alkaloids in
Catharanthus roseus


Name:



Biosynthesis of the anticancer Monoterpene Indole Alkaloids (MIAs) vincristine and vinblastine
in
Catharanthus roseus

L. (G.)

Don (Madagascar periwinkle) represents one of the most
-
studied and
complicated examples of compartmentalised and hormonally
-
regulated plant secondary metabolism.
High commercial value and low
in vivo

production levels of vincristine and vinblastine in th
eir sole
producer,
C. roseus
, has encouraged the elucidation of their biosynthesis, rate limiting steps, and
regulatory control of their gene expression, for decades. Knowledge of the spatial organization of
dimeric MIA biosynthesis
in planta

could be app
lied to accomplish and optimize vincristine and
vinblastine production in cell or tissue culture, which to date, has not been successful. Vincristine and
vinblastine biosynthesis involves five sub
-
pathways (methylerythritol phosphate, monoterpenoid
-
secoir
idoid, indole, and MIA pathways, and indirectly the mevalonate pathway), and although the theory
is currently the subject of debate, three cell types (internal phloem parenchyma,
epidermal, and laticifer
cells or idioblasts
), with a total of over 50 metabo
lic steps. This
presentation will focus on recent
literature which describes c
ontradicting theories regarding the spatial organization of dimeric MIA
biosynthesis.

References:


Murata J, De Luca V (2005) Localization of tabersonine 16
-
hydroxylase and 16
-
OH tabersonine
-
16
-
O
-
methyltransferase to leaf epidermal cells defines them as a major site of precursor biosynthesis in
the vindoline pathway in Catharanthus roseus.

Plant J 44:581

594


Oudin A, Mahroug S, Courdavault V, Hervouet N, Zelwer C, Rodríguez
-
C
oncepción M,

St
-
Pierre B,
Burlat V (2007a) Spatial distribution and hormonal regulation of gene products from

methyl
erythritol phosphate and monoterpene
-
secoiridoid

pathways in Catharanthus roseus. Plant Mol
Biol 65:13

30


BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


13


THE

PROPOSAL, INSTRUCTIONS FOR
2012


Everyone will need to prepare a research proposal, worth 4
5
% of your final mark, based upon the
production of an NSERC ( http://www.nserc.ca/index.htm) grant as modified for undergraduates. The
proposal replaces the Final examination.


The objectives

of the proposal approach are:


1. To develop skills need for future careers in academics, government and the private sector;

2. To learn to integrate knowledge from various disciplines and to present this on an ongoing basis to
your colleagues;

3. To chal
lenge students to independently create a coherent and viable plan of research.

4. To introduce you to writing a winning research proposal. One day you may also have to apply for
your own research grant

.


Your research proposal will focus on an area of
investigation that you have chosen because you
are interested in it. If you have trouble deciding or cannot tell whether your topic is “suitable” or not,
come to see me.


During class we will discuss and critique examples from previous years so that the in
structions
given below will become clearer.


LENGTH:




No more than 12 pages, double
-
spaced.



You must use 12pt font and 2.5cm margins all around.



In addition to these 12 pages you will have one page for the TITLE, one page for the

SUMMARY and one page for REFERENCES.



You must include page numbers.


FORMAT:

The following organization should be used (modeled after NSERC)


1.
Summary (up to one page)



An abstract in plain language that describes the experimental problem, a set of r
esearch
objectives that are designed to address various components of the experimental problem, and anticipated
outcome of the research in terms of significance of results to the field and benefits and/or application to
industry, agriculture, or the healt
h and wellness of Canadians. No references are allowed in the
Summary.


This proposal is for a biotechnology course so must have at least an applied long term goal.
Look up information at NSERC about Strategic Grants.


2.
Background and significance (up t
o six pages)

BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


14





Detailed introduction to problem



Up
-
to
-
date summary of what is known on the subject (i.e. progress to date)



Aim of your research program (long term goal, i.e. you had a 10 year plan to understand the
topic)



An outline of your main objectives
for this proposal (have 1
-

3 main objectives that can be
accomplished over a five year time frame)



Expected significance of your proposed work as it applies to your short and long term objectives
and to the field.


3.
Objectives and methodology (up to four

pages)


Objective 1.


Provide the hypothesis that you are testing. Then give the rationale for experimental approach, a
description of the method, the expected outcome of experiment in terms of type of specific information
gained and how it will be useful. Each objective will p
robably comprise several small experiments are
related to achieving the desired objective. Each experiment can each be discussed sequentially under the
objective.


Objective 2. As above



You have only a limited space for this section so you must provid
e a very good reason why the
hypotheses that you are testing are key hypotheses.


4.
Conclusions:




Summarize your overall expected results. Describe how they will advance the field. How can
you build upon these results to meet your long term research ob
jectives?


5.
References (up to one page)



While any widely used system can be employed i
n order to save space in the proposal I suggest
that you use the following style and numbers in the text

to refer to the citation.


Original Style:

Gudynaite
-
Savitc
h, L., Johnson, D.A. and Miki, B.L. (2009) Strategies to Mitigate
Transgene
-
Promoter Interactions. Plant Biotechnology Journal 7: 472

485.



Space Saving Style”:

Gudynaite
-
Savitch, L. et al. 2009 Plant Biotech. J. 7: 472.


BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


15


Planning a balanced proposal



When thinking about your objectives remember that you may want to include a mix of different
approaches to study the question. Here are some examples.


Genetic approaches; Biochemical approaches; Gene discovery; Testing of known candidate
genes; Model sys
tem (basic research); Crop species (applied); Genomics; Proteomics; Bioinformatics;
Microscopy; Molecular approaches


Even more information


1.
Feasibility



The experiments that you propose should be reasonable for three graduate students to complete
over

a five
-
year period (a PhD), which is the duration of the average NSERC grant proposal. Avoid a
research plan that depends on any one thing working. Things do not always work, so it is best to
approach your problem from several different angles to achiev
e success. Caveats (i.e. potential pitfalls
or difficulties) associated with each approach (if any) should be clearly acknowledged in your proposal.
You can mention a Plan B if appropriate. Methods or approaches should all be referenced.


2.
You need to

convince the reviewer of your proposal that:





your research program promises a notable advancement or innovation in the discipline or
results of importance to a broad range of applications;



you have identified well
-
formulated short
-

and long
-
term goals;




attaining these goals would be a significant contribution to the discipline;



you have a good chance of attaining the goals with the resources available.



A major portion of the proposal should be devoted to a careful description of the research
object
ives and of the methodology that will be used. For the research plan, you should at least know how
you are going to start out and have some ideas for future options.


BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


16


3.
Milestones for the NSERC exercise:



To keep you on schedule, I have created milesto
nes. You must follow this schedule.


1. By
September 2
4

you must have sent me an E
-
mail that gives your topic and one key reference.
“Your research proposal will focus on an area of investigation that you have chosen because you are
interested in it. If yo
u have trouble deciding or cannot tell whether your topic is “suitable” or not, come
to see me.”


2. By
October 1
, you must have sen
t me an E
-
mail with a list of 6

references that you have read and are
related to your topic. You will find more but I want to make sure that you are progressing. Remember
that some part (or all) of this topic is the subject of your seminar.


3.
On October 1
5
-
1
9

I will meet with each of

you to discuss your proposal, offer advice and try to keep
you on track.


4.
By October 31

you will have submitted a one page
A
bstract for your seminar.


5.
On
October 30

and
November
1

you will present your topic and proposal to the class to stimulate
di
scussion and useful feedback. You have 10 min and cannot use slides.


6.
November seminars
. You will receive feedback to help with the final writing.


7.
On
November
8
,

we will
critique grants from previous years. By comparing them to the ideal you
will be

able to better critique your own.

Any last minute problems can be addressed.


8. On
December
7

you will submit your grant by 12:00 (noon).





BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


17


Marking Scheme: (4
5
.
a
ll are approximate)


1. One page summary for public distribution.






/1


2. Strength of idea. Context of this proposal within overall





/2

objectives of the research.


3. Overall writing and presentation, logical flow, clear introduction and clear summary

/5


4. Background to the problem and its significance. Why is a new ap
proach needed?

/10

Was the literature reviewed? Integration of data into a model.


5. A description of the methodology. Is it appropriate? Are problem areas identified?

/6


6. Expected results and their significance. How did they deal with control and rep
licates?

/10


7. Conclusions. How you would build upon these results and how they would


/6

help you to meet your long term objectives.


8. A
Reference section that will

include the
6 articles (you submitted the citations to me
i
n October )
plus any ad
ditional articles. This is required but no extra marks.


9. Participation in the process (individual mark). If you miss sessions or arrived

unprepared you could
lose up to 5 marks.









BIO4174 Topic
s in Biotechnology. Outline 2012


18


NSERC REVIEWS November 8
, 2012
. The order is the order of
presentation


Primary

Secondary

Title


Mr.
Burke

Mr.
Abdulle

Phytoremediation

(#2)


Mr.
Eyres

Ms
Courrèges

Trehalose and legumes

(#3)
[ the title in the Handout was wrong]


Ms
Tran

Mr.
Rogowski

Investigation of Potential Targets for the Development of a Malaria





Vaccine Using Reverse Vaccinology

(#5)


Primary: (5
-
10 min)

You will present a summary of the application and a critique (good and bad) of the proposal itself. The
focus is on the pro
posed research and experimental approach, data analysis and how the application
dealt with potential problems


Secondary: (<5 min)

You will review the application judging from two points
-
of
-
view. Were the instructions followed and if
not, were there reason
able extenuating circumstances (follow the outline). Did their presentation/style
improve or detract from the application.


At the end of the process we will vote to rank the applications.