University of Lucknow Courses

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IPPR Center
Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh 226007 , India
(0522) 2740086, 2740412
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Approvals: UGC NAAC NCTE

M.Sc. (Plant Science)

Duration:2 Years


Course Structure

First Year

Semester- I

  • Paper I - Microbiology (Bacteriology, Virology) and Microbial Biotechnology.
  • Paper II - Mycology & Plant Pathology (Fungal Diseases)
  • Paper III - Algology & Lichenology
  • Paper IV - Bryology
  • Practical - Based on Papers I to IV including Class and Field Work (Local excursion)

Semester - II

  • Paper V - Pteridophytes
  • Paper VI - Gymnosperms and Palaeobotany
  • Paper VII - Angiosperms: Taxonomy and Economic Botany
  • Paper VIII - Angiosperms: Histology, Anatomy, Embryology
  • Practical - Based on Papers V to VIII - Class and Field Work (Local excursion)  Students have to take all the eight papers.

Final Year

Semester - III

  • Paper I - Cytology, Genetics and Cytogenetics
  • Paper II - Plant Breeding and Biostatistics
  • Paper III - Ecology, Environment and Soil Science
  • Paper IV - Modern experimental techniques and computer application
  • Practical - Based on Papers I to IV including  - Class and field work/Laboratory visit

 Semester - IV

  • Paper V - Plant Physiology
  • Paper VI - Cell Biology & Plant Biochemistry
  • Paper VII - Biotechnology and Human welfare
  • Paper VIII Elective - Project work (Review based on all Papers from Semester I to IV)
  • Practical - Based on Papers V and VII (Incl. Biotech Lab visits & class work)

 Students have to take all the seven papers:

  •  The theory papers would have internal evaluation by the teaching/guest faculty as decided by the Coordinator in accordance with the nature and requirement of the subject and shall be notified to the students in the beginning of the semester.
  •  The semester examination (written) in each subject/paper shall be of three hours duration.
  •  The entire syllabus of a paper would be divided in 4 units and students would be expected to attempt one question from each unit (having two alternatives). The questions can be of short answer, multiple choice, short or long answer type in question no. 1.
  • For practicals, the examination would be conducted by a board of external and internal examiners decided by the Board of Studies. The practical examination would also have comprehensive Vive-voce examinations.
  •  The final result of the candidate shall be declared on the basis of combined results of all the examinations.
  • (f) A candidate securing 75% or more marks in any paper shall be declared to have passed in that paper with Distinction. A candidate securing 75% or more marks in overall aggregate at the examinations shall be deemed to have passed with ‘Honours’. The minimum pass marks: For passing 36%, II Div. 40%; I Div. 60%; Distinction 75%.
  • (g)
    •  The facilities of the back (retake) paper would be available as per following provisions:
    • Candidates who fail to secure the minimum pass marks (category) (i) or want to improve upon it may be allowed retake of papers (not practical) at the next examination of the same semester (but not thereafter). However, retake will not be permissible in more than two papers.
    • Candidates of category (i) shall be promoted to the next semester but shall be required to reappear in the paper in which they had failed in the previous semester along with all the papers of the next semester examination.
    • A candidate who fails in a regular semester examination or fails to clear back paper examination, shall be allowed to appear in the next semester examination of the semester he/she wants to clear as casual student on payment of Rs.10,000/- (5000/- regular+5000/- parri-passu). Such Students shall be treated parri-passu with regular students of that semester which they are retaking.


Course Detail


Paper I  Microbiology (Bacteriology and Virology) and Microbial Biotechnology.

Unit I

  • History of Microbiology
  • Classification and general characters of bacteria and archaea
  • Nutrition in bacteria including nitrogen fixation
  • Microbial fermentation and industrial applications
  • Biopesticides

Unit II

  • Genetics of bacteria (genome structure, replication, gene expression, recombination etc)
  • Microbes in genetic engineering
  • Nature of virulence, toxins and extracellular enzymes of pathogenic bacteria
  • Antibiotics and their mode of action

Unit III

  • Nomenclature and classification of plant viruses
  • Particle morphology and genome organization of tobacco mosaic tobamovirus (TMV), brome mosaic bromovirus (BMV), and cauliflower mosaic caulimovirus (CaMV)
  • Genome expression strategies in plant viruses
  • Infection and replication of TMV in plants
  • Purification and quantitative assay of plant viruses
  • Virus diseases of humans with special reference to hepatitis, AIDS and influenza
  • Introduction to oncogenic viruses

Unit IV

  • Molecular aspects of virus-vector relationship
  • Modem methods of plant virus control
  • Structure, replication and pathogenicity of viroids
  • Structure & replication of bacteriophages
  • Properties of antigens and antibodies, and serological techniques
  • General account and types of immunities


  • Based on syllabus as above


Paper II – Mycology and Plant pathology (Fungal Diseases)

Unit I

  • Recent trends in the classification of fungi with reference to morphological and Para morphological criteria. Mycorrhizal application in agriculture and plant growth. Fungal cytology and genetics heterothallism heterokaryosis, parasexual cycle Physiology of reproduction Physiology of fungi with reference to biotrophs. hemibiotorphs, symbionts and necrotrophs. \ Economic importance of fungi, production of alcohol, organic acids, antibiotics food and fooder : yeast. mushroom cultivation

Unit II

Comparative studies of the following sub-divisions.

  • Myxomycotina: Stemonitis, Arcyria, Physarum, Plasmodiophora.
  • Mastigomycotina: Allomyccs, Peronospora, Achlya
  • Zygomycotina: Synccphalastrum, Choanephora
  • Ascomycotina-Taphrina, Emericella, Chaetomium, Morchella, Pleospora
  • Basidiomycotina-Melampsora, Tilletia, Cyathus
  • Deuteromycotina-Cercospora, Colletotrichum, Drechslera, Alternaria

Unit III

  • Ecology and control of the following crop diseases: Paddy: sheath blight, Bacterial leaf blight.
  • Wheat- Bunt of wheat ear cockle
  • Maize- Leaf blight.
  • Jowar- Smuts caused by Sphacelotheca sorghi
  • Sugarcane- Red rot
  • Arhar- Wilt
  • Crucifers- Downy mildew
  • Groundnut- Tikka
  • Apple- Apple scab

Unit IV

  • Role of enzymes and toxins in pathogenesis Storage fungi and mycotoxins Disease control- Physical. chemical and biological methods, crop rotation plant quarantines. Symptamatology of fungal. bacterial and viral infection of plants.


  • Study of the morphological characters and reproductive structures of the fungal genera mentioned above and lichens
  • Preparation of culture medium.
  • Staining techniques for cytological studies
  • Study of symptamatology of diseased specimens by different pathogens
  • Isolation. purification and culture of pathogens from soil rhizosphere and seed.
  • Measurement of the activity of enzymes of fungal pathogens:
    • Cellulase
    • Pectinase
  • Laboratory testing of fungicides (Systemic and non-systemic) against pathogenic fungi
  • Demonstration of biological control of pathogenic fungi in vitro


Paper III Algology and Lichenology

Unit I

  • Algae-general characters, definitions and scope. Comparative survey of important systems of classification of algae, criteria for algal classification and modern trends. Diagnostic features of algal phyla: range of Thallus and reproductive diversity. Life history patterns: parallelism in evolution. Comparative account of algal pigments; light microscopic structure, ultra structure, function and importance of cell wall, flagella chloroplasts pyrenoids eyespots, nucleus, contractile vacuole and their importance in taxonomy.

Unit II

  • Study of Cyanophyta, Prochlorophyta, Chlorophyta, Xanthophyta, Bacillariophyta, Phaeophyta and Rhodophyta upto the order level with reference to the following genera: Microcystis, Anabaena, Stigonema, Volvox, Chlorella Hydrodictyon, Prasiola, Oedogonium, Closterium, Caulerpa, Valonia, Nitella, Botrydium. Navicula. Padina, Dictyota,Gelidium, Halymenia.

Applied phycological studies

  • Distribution of algae in soil, freshwater and marine environments; role of algae in soil fertility; productivity in fresh water and marine environments: algal role in fisheries algae in symbiotic association; algae in polluted habitats algae as indicators of pollution; algal blooms, fossil algae.

Unit III

  • (a) Algal cytology and genetics.
  • (b) Algae in biotechnology.
  • (c) Economic importance of algae.

Unit IV

  • A general account of Lichens and its symbionts, Thallus structure, reproduction, physiology, classification and distribution, Chemistry of Lichens, Isolation of symbiont and synthesis of Thallus, Economic importance Study types: Dermatocarpon, Cladonia, Parmelia, Usnea, Heterodermia

Paper IV  Bryology


  • General characteristics of bryophytes, alternation of generation and classification. Life-cycle of bryophytes, asexual and sexual reproduction in various groups. Ecology - habitat diversity, growth forms, growth factors. Role of bryophytes in pollution monitoring, geobotanical prospecting, horticultural uses, economic importance. Spore diversity, dispersal mechanism and their germination. Moss protonema, protonemal differentiation and bud induction.

Unit - II


Comparative morphological and anatomical studies of gametophytes and sporophytes in various orders of the class music:

  • Sphagnales - Sphagnum
  • Andreaeales - Andreaea
  • Takakiales - Takakia
  • Buxbaumiales - Buxbaumia
  • Bryales - Physcomitrium, Fontinalis, Splachnum
  • Polytrichales - Polytrichum

Unit - III


Comparative morphological and anatomical studies of gametophytes and sporophytes in various orders of the class hepaticae

  • Calobryales - Calobryum, Haplomitrium
  • Metzgeriales - Pallavicinia, Riccardia, Metzgeria
  • Jungermanniales - Jungermannia, Porella, Ptychanthus, Radula
  • Sphaerocarpales - Riella, Sphaerocarpous
  • Monocleales - Monoclea
  • Marchantiales - Reboulia, Plagiochasma, Asterella, Lunularia, Dumortiera, Targionia, Cyathodium

Unit - IV


Comparative morphological and anatomical studies of gametophytes and sporophytes in various orders of the class hepaticae

  • Anthocerotaceae - Anthoceros, Folioceros
  • Notothyladaceae - Notothylas, Phaeoceros
  • Dendrocerotaceae - Dendroceros, Megaceros
  • Origin, evolution, fossil history, phylogeny of principal classes:
  • Hepaticae, Musci and Anthocerotae.


Morphological and anatomical study of representative members of the following groups using cleared whole mount preparations, dissections and sections:

  • Hepaticae:
    • Metzgeriales (Metzgeria /Pallavicinia)
    • Jungermanniales (Porella / Ptychanthus or any other leafy liverwort)
    • Marchantiales (Plagiochasma, Asterella, Conocephalum/Lunularia, Targionia/Cyathodium)
  • Musci:
    • Sphagnales (Sphagnum)
    • Polytrichales (Polytrichum / Pogonatum)
    • Bryales (Physcomitrium / Funaria)
  • Anthocerotae:
    • Notothyladaceae (Notothylas)
    • Morphology of bryophyte spores
    • Experiments to study regeneration, spore germination, moss protonema.
    • Study of bryophytes in their natural habitats



Paper V  Pteridophytes

Unit I

  • Past and present distribution of ferns, Ecology of Pteridophyte, Origin and evolution, Cytology in relation to Taxonomy; Evolution of stellar system; Evolution of sorus, Heterospory and Seed habit, Telome theory, Apogamy,Apospory and Alternation of generation. .

Unit II

Classification, morphology, life history, present and past distribution and phylogeny of the following:

  • Rhyniopsida- Rhynia, Horneophyton, Cooksonia, Hicklingia,
  • Eogaspesia, Taeniocrada, Hedeia, Yarravia, Hostimella,
  • Nothia, Trimerophyton and Dawsonites
  • Psilotopsida - Psilotum and Tmesipteris


  • Asteroxylales - Asteroxylons, Zosterophyllum and Baragwanthia
  • Lycopodiales - Lycopodium and Phylloglossum
  • Protolepidodendrales - Protolepidodendron and Cepodexylon
  • Selaginellaes - Selaginella
  • Lepidodendrales - Lepidodendron, Sigillaria, Bothrodendron and
  • Lipidophloion
  • Isoetales - Isoetes, Stylites, Pleuromeia and Nat-barstiana


  • Hyeniales - Hyenia
  • Pseudoborniales - Pseudobornia
  • Sphenophyllales - Sphenophyllum and Cheirostrobus
  • Calamitales - Calamites, Asterocalamites, Annularia, Asterophyllites,
  • Calamostachyus, Pallaeostachya and Calamocarpon
  • Equisetales - Equisetum


  • Primofilices:
    • Protopteridales - Protopteridium, Aneurophyton and Rhacophyton
    • Zygopteridales - Zygopteris, Amkyropteris, Botryopteris and Strautopteris
    • Cladolylales - Cladoxylon, Pseudosporochus and Calamophyton
  • Filicopsida
  • Eusporangiatae:
    • Ophioglossales - Ophiolossum, Botrychium and helminthostachys
    • Marattiales - Marattia, Angiopteris, Marattiopsis and Psaronium
  • Protoleptosporangiatae:
    • Osmundales - Osmunda, Todea, Thamnopteris, Osmundites and
    • Cladophelbis


  • Leptosporangiatae:
    • Schizaeales - Anemia, Schizaea, Lygodium
    • Pteridales - Pteris, Adiantum, Ceratopteris and Actinopteris
    • Dicksoniales - Dicksonia, Pteridium Lindsaea, Dennstaedtia
    • Davalliales - Davallia, Nephrolepis
    • Hymenophyllales - Hymenophyllum, Trichomanes
    • Gleicheniales - Gleichenia, Geschenites, Stromatopteris
    • Matoniales - Matonia, matonidium
    • Cyatheales - Cyathea, Alsophila
    • Aspidiales - Asplenium, Athyrium, Dryopteris, Tectaria
    • Blechnales - Blechnum
    • Polypodiales - Dipteris, Polypodium
    • Marsileales - Marsilea, Regnellidium, Pilularia
    • Salviniales - Salvinia, Azolla


Paper VI  Gymnosperms and Palaeobotany

Unit I

  • Evolutionary tendencies in Gymnosperms. Origin, relationship and economic importance of Gymnosperms, Embryology of Gymnosperms and its relevance to Forest Genetics, Silviculture and Taxonomy. Classification past and present, distribution of Gymnosperms with special reference to India.

Unit II

A study of their morphology, structure, life history, interrelationship and phylogeny of the following: .

  • Cycadopsida
  • Pteridospermales - A general account, affinities and interrelationship of the different families and members of the order
  • Lyginopteridaceae - Lyginopteris, Heterangium, Rhetinangium,
  • Sphenepteris, Kaloxylon, Rachriopteris,
  • Lagenostoma, Sphaerostoma, Genomosperma,
  • Physostoma, Telangium, Crosstheca
  • Medullosaceae - Medullosa, Sutcliffa, Myiloxylon, Neuropteris,
  • Althopteris, Trigonocarpus, Stophanospermum,
  • Codonotheca, Whittlesseya, Aulacotheca,
  • Dolerotheca, Potoniea
  • Glossopteridaceae - Glossopteris, Gangamopteris, Palaeovittaria,
  • Rhabdotacenia, Vertabraria, Scutum, Hirsutum,
  • Lanceolatus, Ottokaria, Cistella, Plums, Lidgettonia
  • Peltaspermaceae - Lepidopteris, Pellaspermum, Antevsia
  • Corystospermaceae - Dicroidium, Xylopteris, Umkomasia,
  • Spermatocodon, Pilophorsperma, Pteruchus
  • Caytoniaceae - Sagenopteris, Caytonia, Caytonanthus
  • Cycadales - A general account of living and fossil Cycadales, their geographical distribution along with its significance and evolutionary tendencies and cytogenetics, cultural studies as well as economic importance.
  • Nilssonioles - Nilssonia, Ctenis, Pseudoctenis, Baenia,
  • Androstrobus
  • Cycadeoideales
  • Bennettitales - A general account of the order with affinities and
  • interrelationship of the following:
  • Williamsoniaceae - Williamsonia, Ptilophyllum, Pterophyllum,
  • Otozamites, Dictyozamites, Bennetticarpus
  • Weltrichia.
  • Wielandiellaceae - Wielandiella, Anomzamites, Williamsoniella,
  • Nilssoniopteris along with their fructification.
  • Cycadeoideaceae - Cycadeoidea (Bennittites)
  • Pentoxylales - A general account of Pentoxylales Pentoxylon,
  • Nipaniophyllum, Carnoconites, Sahinia.


Conlferopsida Cordaitales - A general account of the order with its different families and genera

  • Eristophylaceae - Eristophyton, Endoxylon, Bilignea
  • Cordaitaceae - Cordaites, Noeggerathiopsis, Mesoxylon,
  • Dadoxylon, Metacordaites, Perapitys, Artisia,
  • Amyelon, Cordaitanthus, Cardiocarpus
  • Poroxylaceae - Poroxylon, Rhabdospermum
  • Ginkgoales
  • Trichopityaceae - Trichopitys
  • Ginkgoaceae - Ginkgo, Baiera, Sphenobaiera, Ginkgoites,
  • Arctobaiera, Windwardia, Ertophyllum
  • Coniferales - The past and present distribution of conifers with special reference to origin and distribution of coniferous flora of India. Evolutionary trends in conifers. The morphology and evolution of megastrobilus and cone-scale complex.
  • Lebachiaceae - Lebachia, Ernestiodendron, Walahia,
  • Walchoistrobus, Carpentieria, Buriadia
  • Voltziaceae - Pseudovoltizia, Voltziopsis, Ullmania
  • Palissyaceae - Pallisya, Stachyotaxus
  • Pinaceae - Pinus, Cedrus, Abies, Pseudotsuga, Picea, Larix
  • Araucariaceae - Araucaria, Agathis, Wolemia
  • Taxodiaceae - Taxodium, Cryptomeria, Sequoia, Sequoiadendron,
  • Metasequoia, Sciadopitys
  • Cupressaceae - Cupressus, Thuja, Juniperus
  • Podocarpaceae - Podocarlpus, Saxegothaea, Phyllocladus,
  • Dacrydium, Microcachrys, Acmophyle
  • Taxales - Palaeotaxus, Taxus, Austrotaxus, Pseudotaxus,
  • Torreya, Amentotaxus


  • Gnetopsida
  • Ephedrales - Ephedra
  • Gnetales - Gnetum
  • Welwitschiales - Welwitschia


  • Plant fossils, their methods of preservation, investigation and their importance in Stratigraphy and economic geology. A study of the standard stratigraphic scale and the succession of representative floras in the various geological epochs and their bearing on plant morphology and evolution.


Paper VII  Angiosperms: Taxonomy and Economic Botany

Unit I

  • Botanical explorations, historical perspectives. Botanical survey of India, its organization and role.
  • Botanical nomenclature, History ICBN, Familiarity with Botanical literature, monographs, icones, floras, important periodicals with emphasis on Indian floristics, methods of literature Consultation.
  • Phytogeography with reference to discontinuous areas, endemism, floristic regions of the world.

Unit II

  • Principles of plant classification with emphasis on modern tools of taxonomy: cytochemo-palyno and Numerical taxonomy: Taxonomy as a synthetic discipline; utility of taxonomy; biosystematics. Phylogenetic systems of classification with emphasis on comparative critical study of: Engler & Prantl, Hutchinson, Takhtajan, Cronquist, Dahlgren and Thorne.

Unit III

Phylogeny of Angiosperms: Origin, evolution, and interrelationships in dicots and monocots Interesting taxonomic features and phylogeny of the following families:


  • Magnoleaceae, Nymphaeaceae, Nelumbonaceae, Ranunculaceae, Papaveraceae, Fumariaceae, Caryophylaceae, Tiliaceae, Sterculiaceae, Bombacaceae, Malvaceae, Caricaceae. Cucurbitaceae, Passitloraceae. Capparaceae and Cruciferae.
  • Rosaceae, Leguminosae, Myrtaceae Rutaceae, Umbelliferae, Apocynaceae, Asclepiadaceae, Solanaceae, Convolvulaceae, Cuscutaceae, Boraginaceae, Orobanchaceae, Acanthaceae, Serophdariaceae,  Rubiaceae, Compositae, Labiatae, Verbenaceae and Bignoniaceae, Moraceae, Cannabinaceae, Fagaceae. Betulaceae Juglandaceae, Casuarinaceae, Nyctaginaceae, Chenopodiaceae, Amaranthaceae, Polygonaceae.

Monocotyledons: Alismatacea, Commelinaceae, Cyperaceae, Graminae, Cannaceae, Palmae, Araceae, Lillaceae, Amary-liidaceae, Agavaceae, Smilacaceae and Orchidaceae.

Unit IV

  • A general study of economically important plants and their products Important sources of cereals, legumes and pulses, forages, fibres, sugars, fats and oils spices, beverages, fumitories and masticatories, timber, gums, dyes, insecticides, vegetables, fruits, ornamentals, medicines and latex-yielding plants. Characteristics and uses of wood and timber yielding plants. Processing of tea, coffee, tobacco, oil, rubber and fibres.


  • A critical study and identification up to generic and specific level of locally available aquatic and terrestrial species (preferably wild species).
  • Location of key characters, use of key up to specific level after the description.
  • Familiarity with economically important plant parts and products obtained from them.
  • Identification of various starches and fibres.
  • Identification of various timbers on the basis of structure of secondary wood.


Paper VIII Angiosperms: Histology, Anatomy and Embryology

Unit I

  • Origin, growth, differentiation and ultra structure of cells and tissues. Meristems-their structure and kinds; theories concerning root and shoot apices; organogenesis. Structure, ultra structure ontogeny and evolution of primary secondary xylem and phloem indicating their phylogenetic role.

Unit II

  • Normal and anomalous functioning of vascular cambIum; cork cambium-periderm formation, abscission and wound healing. Structural variability in leaves, leaf histogenesis, leaf meristem, origin, development and ultrastructure of trichomes and stomata. Comparative anatomy of typical dicot and monocot roots, stems and leaves. Anomalies in the primary and secondary root and stem structures. Organogamy of floral parts and Floral biology.

Unit III

  • Historical perspective of the development of our knowledge in Embryology. Microsporangium-structure and function of wall layers, nuclear behaviour in tapetum, microsporogenesis, microgametogenesis. Megasporangium-structure, development and kinds of ovules, Morphological nature of ovules, megasporogenesis and megagametogenesis, embryo sac types and morphological nature of the embryo sac. Pollination-both natural and artificial, self and interspecific incompatibility, methods of overcoming incompatibilities. Fertilization-syngamy and triple fusion, post fertilization changes in ovules and embryo sac.

Unit IV:

  • Endosperm-structure, kinds and morphological nature, endosperm haustoria, pseudo-embryo sac, exnia, metaxenia. mosaic endosperm, endosperm culture. Embryo-structure and kinds of embryo development, embryo culture. Apomixis-vegetative propagation and agamospermy (adventive embryony, apospory and diplospory), parthenogenesis. Polyembryony-origin, kinds and significance. Experimental and Applied Embryology, importance and its use.


  • Preparation of permanent slides, using hand sections and paraffin method of microtechnique for anatomy of typical and anomalous dicot and monocot roots, stems and leaves.
  • Study of different kinds of stomata-anomocytic, anisocytic, paracytic and diacyticin epidermal peelings.
  • Study of different histogen layers in L.S. of root and stem apices.
  • Demonstrations:
    • Use of wood microtome
    • Use of ultramicrotome for electron microscopic studies
    • Photomicrography
    • Familiarization with Scanning and Transmission Electron Microscopy.
  • Hand sections/Dissection/Microtomy of anthers, ovules and seeds for the study of different
  • stages in the development of male and female gametophytes and embryo formation.
  • Study of pollen types, using acetolysed and non-acetolysed pollen.
  • Collection and identification of local aerospora.
  • Preparation of honey samples for microscopic examinations of pollen.
  • Study of pollen germination on cavity slides, using hanging drop method.
  • Separation of pollinia.
  • Dissection of ovule to isolate the endosperm at different stages of maturity



Paper I  Cytology, Genetics and Cytogenetics


Genome –Basic concept and organization

  • Chromosome structure, nucleosome, solenoid and packaging of DNA, molecular organization of centromere and telomere, nucleolus and ribosomal RNA genes, euchromatin and heterochromatin, karyotype analysis, banding patterns, karyotype evolution, specialized chromosomes—polytene chromosomes, lampbrush chromosomes, B chromosomes
  • Nuclear DNA content, C-value paradox, multigene families and their evolution,  Structure

and Properties of Nucleic acids: Structure, Chemical, Physical, Spectroscopic and thermal properties of nucleic acids. Dissociation and reassociation kinetics of DNA, Cot curves, Cot ½ values and its significance. Unique, moderately repetitive and highly repetitive DNA, conformation of nucleic acids. (A, B, Z DNA, t-RNA, micro RNA) , DNA sequencing and amplification, molecular genetic maps, genome projects

  • In situ hybridization to locate transcripts in cells—FISH, GISH, Computer assisted chromosome analysis, chromosome microdissection and microcloning, flow cytometry and confocal microscopy in karyotype analysis
  • Genetic Fine Structure, cis-trans test, Fine structure analysis in eukaryotes
  • Allele concept, multiple alleles, isoalleles, pseudoalleles


Inheritance Genetics

  • Principles of Mendelian inheritance and Interaction of genes: Introduction to pre Mendelian, Mendelian and Post Mendelian genetics. Complementary, epistasis, inhibitory, Duplicate, Polymeric, Lethal and additive interaction of genes.
  • Cytoplasmic inheritance: - Cytoplasmic inheritance involving chloroplast (Mirabilis jalapa, Zea mays) and Mitochondria (petite yeasts and cytoplasmic male sterility in higher plants), mitochondrial and chloroplast genomes, interaction between nuclear and cytoplasmic genes. (Rubisco and Cytochrome oxidase)
  • Quantitative Inheritance: Qualitative and Quantitative traits, Continuous variation, Inheritance of quantitative traits, (corolla length in Nicotiana, cob length in Zea mays), multiple factors hypothesis and heritability.
  • Population genetics: -Gene and genotype frequencies, Hardy-Weinberg law, Factors affecting Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium (selection, mutation, migration and genetic drift)


  • Cytogenetics and induced variation
    • Structural changes in chromosomes: Origin, meiosis and breeding behaviour of duplication, deficiency, inversion and translocation heterozygotes. Cytological consequences of crossing over in Inversion and translocation heterozygotes Genetics of structural heterozygotes, complex translocation heterozygotes, Robertsonian translocations, B-A translocations
    • Numerical alterations in chromosomes: Origin, occurrence and meiosis of haploids, aneuploids and euploids. Origin and production of autopolyploids, chromosome and chromatid separation, allopolyploids. Induction and characterization of trisomics and monosomics. Transmission of trisomics and monosomics.
    • Recombination and Linkage: - Concept of Linkage, Types and Applications, Concept and Types of Recombination, Molecular mechanism of recombination, site specific recombination estimation of recombination percentages and map distances,Gene mapping in Fungi using ordered and unordered tetrads of Neurospora Three point test crosses and estimation of linkage distances in plants. Gene maps and physical maps.
    • Mutation—Spontaneous and induced mutation, physical and chemical mutagens, molecular basis of mutations, transposable elements in prokaryotes and eukaryo t es, site directed mutageneis, DNA damage and repair mechanism- Types of DNA damage, enzymes involved in repair of DNA, excision repair, recombination repair and mismatch repair systems.

Unit- IV

  • Molecular Genetics
    • Cell Cycle and apoptosis: Control mechanisms, role of cyclins and cyclin dependent kinases, mechanism of programmed cell death
    • Genetic Code
    • Gene Structure: Organization and Structure of prokaryotic and eukaryotic genes; structure and role of promoters, exons, introns, terminators and enhancers.
    • DNA Replication: - Mechanism of prokaryotic and eukaryotic DNA replication, replication apparatus, Origins of replication, priming and DNA polymerases.
    • Transcription: RNA polymerases and their role, Transcription apparatus, Transcription in prokaryotes and eukaryotes, Initiation, elongation and termination, RNA processing, reverse transcription and cDNA synthesis, Ribonucleoproteins, Structure of mRNA.
    • Regulation of Transcription in prokaryotes and eukaryotes: Operon concept (Lac, Tryptophan, Arabinose) positive and negative regulation of prokaryotic genes, eukaryotic transcription factors. ranscriptional and translational control


Paper II  Plant Breeding and Biostatistics


  • Plant Genetic resources and reproductive systems
  • Plant Genetic resources: Genetic diversity in plants, Penetrance and Expressivity, Pleiotropy, Centres of origin, Importance of genetic diversity in crop improvement and its erosion, Collection and evaluation of germplasm, Concepts of crop conservation and regulation. in situ and ex situ conservation
  • Competition in natural populations, Inter genotype competition, Environmental variation
  • Heritability-definition and types, Estimates of heritability
  • Reproductive systems and Pollination control mechanisms: Sexual reproduction (Cross and self pollination), asexual reproduction, Apomixis, identification of apomictic plants, Genetics of Apomixis
  • Incompatibility and Male sterility: Genetic, physiological and biochemical basis of incompatability, Utility of self incompatablity, Evolution of incompatability mechanism; Genetic and Cytoplasmic male sterility


  • Hybrid breeding
    • Hybridization and its role, Principles of combination breeding and its application.
    • Hybrid breeding in self and cross-pollinated crops. Development of hybrids, Use of male sterility in development of hybrids,
    • Testing of combining ability, prediction of performance of hybrids- single cross hybrid, three way cross hybrid, double cross hybrid, Multiple crosses –composite cross breeding,
    • Back cross method of breeding-theory of transfer of alleles
    • Protoplast fusion
    • Heterosis, Theories of heterosis, Environmental heterosis, Inbreeding depression
    • Methods of direct gene transfer, QTL Analysis and Marker assisted selection


  • Breeding methods and their contributions
    • Breeding methods in self fertilizing species –Pedigree method, bulk method, single seed descent, dihaploidy, Genotype assessment, recurrent selection , reciprocal recurrent selection
    • Breeding methods in cross fertilizing species-Mass selection, family selection, combined selection, inter population selection schemes
    • Factors affecting efficiency of breeding methods
    • Breeding methods of important crop plants e.g. wheat, rice
    • Role of mutation in Plant Breeding, generation of variability using mutagens and isolation of useful mutants and their achievements
    • Role of polyploids in crop improvement , Biometrical genetics of autotetraploids and their achievements

Unit- IV

  • Biostatistical methods
    • Importance and scope of Biostatistics
    • Statistical terms and symbols
    • Sample and sampling, Collection and representation of date-tabulation, graphical, diagrammatic
    • Measures of Central tendency
    • Measures of dispersion: range, mean deviation, Standard deviation, Variance, Deviation
    • Correlation and regression
    • Tests of significance: Significance and difference in means, Standard error of mean, Standard error of SD, Students ‘t’ test
    • Chi-square test
    • Correlation and regression - Meaning, kinds of correlation, coefficient of correlation, methods of studying correlation. Aims of regression analysis. Kinds of regression analysis.


Paper III  Environment, Ecology and Plant-soil relationship


  • Environmental Botany: Environmental pollution, the problems and its causes and prevention, indicator plants (pollution of air, water and soil, radioactivity and noise) Modern Environmental problems- Acid rain, Ozone depletion and Green house effect


  • Plant ecology, Plant responses to environmental factors (climate, edaphic, Biotic, topographic and geographic factors. Ecosystems- The concept, ecosystem component and major ecosystem of the world. Ecosystem functioning. Community dynamics-successional changes.


  • Study of plant communities (quantitative and qualitative), characteristics of communities, methods of study and classification of plant communities. Population dynamics, principles of population regulation. Phytogeography: Vegetational zone, Important forest types of India. Interpretative phytogeography: Principles and concepts of plant distribution.


  • Soil: Soil and natural medium for plant growth. Origin of soil, Minerals as a source of plant nutrients. Soil forming process and its impact on soil profile development. Properties of soils, ion exchange,  calcareousness, salinity, sodicity. Organic matter, Soil fertility: Concept, basic methods of fertility evaluation and maintenance. Soil types of India.


Paper IV  Modern experimental techniques and computer Applications

Instrumentation (Modern experimental techniques)

Unit I

  • Microscopy: Light. phase-contrast. Fluorescence, dark field and electron microscopy (SEM & TEM). Microtomy. staining and differentiation techniques for cellular components and tissues. Centrifugation techniques and their applications.

Unit II

  • Sand culture/water culture and controlled soil culture techniques. Culture techniques for different groups of organisms. Tracer techniques: Detection and measurement of isotopes and applications.

Unit III

  • Photometry: colorimetry and spectrophotometry (UV. visible an infrared), absorption and emission spectrophotometry. Electrophoretic techniques and their applications. Amino acid analysis and protein sequencing. Applications and detection of proteins and nucleic acids (Western Transfers and Immuno blots and Southern blot) MAB technology.

Computer Applications

Unit IV

  • Brief introduction to computers and their applications. Programming. information. retrieval and computing using dBASE Use of word processor package (Word Star). Computer packages (e.g. Lotus. Harvard Graphics. Corel Draw).


  • Demonstrations of various techniques (Units I-III).
  • Computer Practical (10).



Paper V  Plant Physiology


  • Water metabolism: Cell osmotic quantities-osmosis, osmotic potential, water potential Mechanism of water uptake and translocation- water absorption by roots, root pressure and turgor pressure. Phloem loading and unloading Tarnspiration and its regulation: Stoamatal opening and closing. Photosynthesis: general aspects and historical background. Action spectra, organization of photosynthesis apparatus, pigments and light harvesting complexes. Photolysis of water, Meachanism of electron transport- structure and functions of components of Photosystem I and II. Role of peoxiredoxins. Photophosphorylation, Protom transport and ATP synthesis in chloroplast- ATP synthe tase. Carbon assimilation: Calvin cycle and its regulation, RUBISCO, Photorespiration (C 2 Cycle) and C 4 cycle and their regulation. CAM pathway, Photosynthetic responses to light, CO2 and Temperature. Synthesis of Starch and Sucrose.

Unit- II

  • Respiration: Aerobic and anaerobic respiration. Glycolysis, Kreb’s Cycle and their regulation. Substrate level Phosphorylation. Alternate Glycolytic reaction (Gluconeogenesis). Pentose phosphate Pathway. Glyoxylate cycle. Electron Transport System and ATP synthesis- NADPH DH in plant mitochondria, F1-F0 ATPase, Alternate oxidase system. Chlororespiration. Lipid Metabolism: Synthesis of fatty acids (saturated and unsaturated) and lipids (phospholipids). Fatty acid degradation- α, β and ω oxidation.


  • Mineral Nutrition: Essential and Beneficial elements. Role and deficiency effects od essential nutrient elements. Stress Physiology: Plant responses to abiotic stress. Stress Proteins (HSP, LEA). Water deficit and drought, heat, chilling and freezing, salinity, light and anoxia stress. Oxidative stress- reactive oxygen and nitrogen species, antioxidative defense system. Sulphur metabolism: Sulphate uptake and its assimilation.

Unit- IV

  • Flowering: Floral evocation, Florigen concept, circadian rhythms,. Photoperiodism and its regulation. Vernalization. Phytochrome and its functions. Apical dominance, abscission, dormancy (bud and seed), seed germination and Senescence. Plant movements. Nitrogen metabolism: Biological nitrogen fixation-free living and symbiotic organisms, nitrogenase enzyme complex, nodule formation and nod factors. Mechanism of nitrate reduction-nitrate and nitrite reductase. Ammonia assimilation.


Paper VI  Cell Biology and Plant Biochemistry


  • Cell structure and function: Structural organization of cell, the cytoskeleton, organization of microtubules and microfilaments, plasmadesmata. Cell organelles (microbodies, Golgi apparatus, Lysosomes, endoplasmic reticulum, vacuole, ribosomes, nucleus, chloroplast, mitochondria). Plant membranes and membrane transport. Cell wall, Plasma membrane and their structural models and functions. Active and Passive uptake of ions- facilitated diffusion, primary and secondary active transport, ion carriers, channel proteins and pumps (Na+/K+ and Ca 2+ pumps). Membrane transport proteins- Plasma membrane H+- ATPase, vacuolar H+-ATPase and H+ pyrophosphatases.

Unit –II

  • Plant growth regulators: Structure, function, synthesis, cellular and molecular mecahanism of action of auxins. Gibberellins, Cytokinins, Ethylene, Abscisic acid, brasssinosteroids, Polyamines, Jasmonic acid and salicyclic acid.


  • Macromolecules: Structures and functions of carbohydrates, Amino acids, Proteins, Lipids and Nucleic  acid.
  • Secondary metabolites and their function: Cutins, Suberins, Lignin, Anthocyanins, Chalcones, Isoflavones, Stilbenes, terpenes, Sterols. Nitrogen containing compounds- alakaloids, Cyanogenic glycosides, Glucosinolates, Non- protein amini acids. Biosynthesis of phenylalanine, tyrosine and tryptophan (Shikimic acid pathway), terpenes (acetate mevalonate pathway) and phenylpropanoids (acetate malonate pathway).

Unit- IV

  • Enzymes: General aspects, classification, mode of action, allosteric mecahanism, regulation, Active sites, reversible and irreversible enzyme inhibition. Enzyme kinetics and Michaelis- Menton equation.
  • Signal transduction: Overview, role of membranes, receptors and G- proteins, Ca-calmodulin, phospholipid signaling, cyclic nucleotides- adenyl cyclase. Protein kinases-receptor like protein kinase (RLKs), mitogen activated protein kinase (MPAK), cyclin dependent protein kinase (CDK). Protein phosphatase, Auxin, GA and ABA signal transduction.


Paper VII  Biotechnology and Human Welfare

Unit I: Plant cell and tissue culture

  • Plant Cell and Tissue culture: Introduction, history, scope, concept of cellular differentiation, totipotency
  • Culture media and laboratory requirements
  • Micropropagation-Organogensis and embryogenesis, Bioreactors, Embryo rescue,
  • Endosperm, nucellus culture
  • Somaclonal variation:-applications and reasons for generation
  • Somatic hybridization -protoplast culture, regeneration and somatic hybridization, Cybrids
  • Production and uses of haploids
  • Applications of plant tissue culture

Unit II: Genetic Engineering

  • Cloning vectors (plasmid and bacteriophage vectors, cosmids BAC and YACs. And  Enzymes (restriction endonucleases, polymerases, reverse transcriptase, alkaline phosphatase, polynucleotide kinase, Ligases, terminal transferases)
  • DNA cloning, preparation of plasmid DNA, Restriction and electrophoresis, ligation, transformation and analysis of recombinants.
  • Methods of direct and indirect gene transfer in plants, Agrobacterium, Ti and Ri plasmids,
  • Application of genetic engineering, transgenic plants for pest and disease resistance, abiotic stress tolerance, production of useful products.
  • Gene libraries and cDNA libraries, Polymerase chain reaction, DNA fingerprinting, DNA Synthesis, DNA Sequencing, Southern blotting

Unit III: Biotechnology and Human welfare

  • Applications of genetically engineered bacteria in crop production and protection,  biodegradation of xenobiotics and toxic wastes, production of chemicals and fuels Biopesticides and integrated pest management, Biofertilizers, Organic farming
  • Biotechnology in pollution control and phytoremediation
  • Restoration of degraded land -Development of stress tolerant plants, microbes for improving soil fertility

Unit IV: Biotechnology -recent update

  • Introduction to Genomics and Proteomics
  • Molecular markers
  • Bioinformatics -general outline
  • Intellectual Property rights and Protection-brief introduction
  • Patenting of Biological material and its implications
  • Ethics in biotechnological research
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