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Mammalian Cell Engineering

Module CH0170

This Module is offered by TUM Department of Chemistry.

This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective sections.

Basic Information

CH0170 is a semester module in English language at Master’s level which is offered every semester.

This module description is valid from SS 2021 to SS 2022.

Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
180 h 60 h 6 CP

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


The course in Mammalian Cell Engineering provides the central concepts, principles, and knowledge for understanding current research in synthetic biology applied to mammalian cells, a rapidly emerging field that offers applications in cellular therapies and regenerative medicine.
The lectures and exercises will transport the following content:
1. Central dogma of molecular biology: DNA to RNA to Protein
2. Layers of regulation and their amenability to engineering
3. Genetic circuits in mammalian cells
4. Technical excursion: State-of-the-art molecular cloning techniques
5. Classes of gene reporters
6. Principles of protein engineering: de novo designs and rational designs based on circular permutations of proteins, split-protein technology, modeling-based protein engineering, directed evolution, library designs, in vitro diversification, error-prone PCRs.
7. Genetically encoded sensors of analytes or cellular states (GECIs, GEVIs other neurotransmitter indicators, protease amplifiers, split sensors)
8. Gene editing: From Zinc fingers, via TALENs to CRISPR/Cas based technology
9. Genetically controlled actuators (chemogenetics, optogenetics, and variants)
10. Towards applications in cellular theranostics and regenerative medicine

Learning Outcome

After successfully passing the module, students will:
● understand the basic processes in mammalian cells and how they can be accessed by biological engineering;
● understand the options for the analysis and manipulation of cellular processes via genetically encoded components;
● understand gene editing methodology;
● have gained insight into current and future applications for cellular theranostics and regenerative medicine.


Basic knowledge in Biophysics and Biochemistry (e.g. PH0020, PH2013 or PH8106).

Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

VI 3 Mammalian Cell Engineering (CH0170) Westmeyer, G. Wed, 09:00–12:00, MSB E.126

Learning and Teaching Methods

The module consists of an interactive lecture with integrated exercises (4 SWS). The course will integrate up-to-date publications and scientific resources; the exercises will for instance include the hands-on design of genetic constructs for expression in mammalian cells and the design of CRISPR-based gene editing.


The course consists of interactive presentations as well as occasional online presentation of computational molecular biology tools.


● current seminal publications will be provided in the course
● B. Alberts, A. Johnson, D. Morgan, M. Raff, K. Roberts & P. Walter: Molecular Biology of the Cell, Norton & Company, (2014)
● Ron Milo, Rob Phillips: Cell Biology by the numbers;

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

Students will take a written exam of 60 minutes duration to show their understanding of the concepts and principles of mammalian cell engineering.

Exam Repetition

The exam may be repeated at the end of the semester.

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