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Molecular Biotechnology

The global biotechnology industry enjoys more success and influence than ever before. Their innovations continue to improve the lives of people worldwide. Biotechnology uses biological systems to produce, among others, antibiotics, pharmaceuticals, anti-tumor agents, anti-clotting factors, antibodies, but also food additives and biofuels. In addition, improvements are made to crops for the sustainable production of foods. This minor provides a comprehensive overview of the fascinating field of modern biotechnology. The discovery, exploitation and commercialization of some of our best natural products will be discussed including legal aspects of patenting. The students will familiarize themselves with the biotechnology-oriented research that is carried out at our University and in the Leiden Bioscience Park. In the last part of the minor, students will bring their theoretical background into practice in a course aiming to solve a biotechnology-oriented problem with modern genetic engineering approaches. This minor provides a sound basis for students aiming for a future in biotechnology.

General information

  • Size: 15 or 30 EC
    It is possible to follow the complete minor for an accreditation of 30 EC or to follow only the first half of the minor for an accreditation of 15 EC.

  • Period:
    15 EC: fulltime from 2 September 2019 – 8 November 2019
    30 EC: fulltime from 2 September 2019 – 31 January 2020.

  • Language: English

  • Number of participants: minimum 15, maximum 50 for the first 15 EC and maximum 32 for the second 15 EC

  • General information: Education Office Biology
    Coordinator: Dr. D. Claessen

  • The minor is provided by the Bachelor Biology


Admission criteria apply to this Minor (see Appendix 3 of the Education and Exam regulation BSc Programmes (OER)).
The minor Molecular Biotechnology is only accesible to students with a solid background in molecular biology and genetics, e.g. students from Biology, Life Science and Technology, Molecular Science and Technology, Biomedical Sciences, Bio-Pharmaceutical Sciences and Nanobiology or similar.


Students of Leiden University
Registration possible from April 1 until April 15 in uSis.
You have to register in uSis by entering one of the class numbers (‘studieactiviteit nummer’):

  • For the whole minor (30 EC): 1065

  • For the first half of the minor (15 EC): 1430

NB: Registration in usis does not directly mean that you can participate in the minor. You will receive and email that confirms your registration and placement

Students of TU Delft and Erasmus University Rotterdam
Registration possible from April 1 until April 15 via the registration system of TU Delft or Erasmus University Rotterdam.

Other students
Students from other universities can register until April 15 by sending an e-mail including motivation letter, CV, transcript and letter with permission from your own University to Education Office Biology


Course EC Semester 1 Semester 2
Exploitation of Natural Products 6
Biotechnology: from Gene to Bio-based Product 6
Medical Biotechnology 1 3
Medical Biotechnology 2 3
Molecular Design: Biotechnology-oriented Engineering of Life 12


The programme of the 30 EC Minor consists of five full-time courses:

  • Exploitation of Natural Products (6 EC)

  • Biotechnology: from Gene to Biobased Product (6 EC)

  • Medical Biotechnology 1 (3 EC)

  • Medical Biotechnology 2 (3 EC)

  • Molecular Design: Biotechnology-oriented Engineering of Life (12 EC)

Students can choose to follow Exploitation of Natural Products, Biotechnology: from Gene to Biobased Product and the first half of the Medical Biotechnology course, in total 15 EC. These courses will give a broad theoretical insight in the field of biotechnology.
It is not possible to only follow the second half of the Minor program, as the information provided in the first half of the Minor is critical for the practical course (Molecular Design: Biotechnology-oriented Engineering of Life).