College of Arts and Sciences | Good Genes, Bad Genes
E105 | 18288 | Hanratty

COLL-E 105 18288 Good Genes, Bad Genes (Hanratty P) (N & M) (3 cr.)
9:30AM - 10:45AM TR

Have you ever wondered why you have red hair and freckles; why heart
disease or cancer seem to "run" in certain families; whether we will
eventually be able to use gene therapy to cure genetic disorders such
as cystic fibrosis or sickle cell anemia, or what impact this
explosion of genetic engineering may have upon our society? These are
some of the issues we will address in the course.

The course will have a two-fold focus. First, we will introduce
students to the basic concepts of human genetics; discuss a number of
human genetic disorders and the ways in which they arise; and examine
the impact that genetic engineering and recombinant DNA technology are
having on the diagnosis, treatment, and possible cure of some of these
disorders. Second, we will consider the impact of human genetics on
society. We will examine some of the misconceptions that have
surrounded the inheritance of genetic traits and disorders in other
times and societies. We will look at some of the attempts that have
been made to "control" human heredity, including the eugenics
movement, mandatory sterilization and marriage laws, and the successes
and failures of genetic screening programs. We will also consider the
Human Genome project and the impact it may have upon our society, both
positive and negative. Finally, we will consider some of the legal and
bio-ethical issues being raised as a result of the rapid explosion of
genetic technology.

Students will be encouraged to become active participants in the
learning process. In addition to being exposed to new concepts in
lecture, they will have an opportunity to discuss issues raised in
class, interact with guest lecturers, and express their thoughts in
the form of short essays.  Outside the lecture, students will
participate in a required collaborative learning group that will meet
once per week (50 minutes). Learning group sign-up will take place in
class during the first week of classes.