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Biotech focuses on the manipulation of living organisms, their products, and their processes to further knowledge, improve quality of life, and engineer new tools and applications.

Biotechnology is applied to a broad range of industries including the pharmaceutical, chemical, agricultural, food development and manufacturing sectors, to name a few. Biotechnology has improved the fields of medicine, health, environmental science and technology, and will continue to in the future.

Program Goals

Graduates of the Biotechnology program are able to:

  • Demonstrate a broad range of basic laboratory skills and technical competencies applicable to the field of biotechnology and to the workplace;
  • Develop a broad understanding of foundational concepts, mechanisms and principles which can be applied across the fields of applied biotechnology, molecular and microbial biotechnology, food biotechnology, and nanotechnology;
  • Demonstrate scientific reasoning and critical thinking skills including the ability to evaluate and integrate multiple sources of information, recognize problems, evaluate data, and draw conclusions;
  • Model independent and collaborative work environments in the classroom, the laboratory, the field and the workplace;
  • Demonstrate the successful ability to communicate scientific information to a variety of audiences and incorporate multiple modes of technology to achieve that goal; and,
  • Connect the classroom to the world of work through multi-modal and interdisciplinary learning experiences.

Program Concentrations

Interested in a medical career? HU Biotechnology and Integrative Science majors offer programs that set you up for success in medical, veterinary or pharmacy school. You can tailor our programs in Integrative Sciences and Biotechnology to meet the exact requirements of your chosen health professional school. Plus, the experiential learning you’ll gain through the HU academic program can help you score a health-based internship or complete a medically based applied project that will help smooth the way for your entrance into a health professional school.

5 Year Bachelor of Science/Master of Science Biotechnology Program

A Harrisburg University education is designed to help prepare you for the future by offering programs and opportunities to set you up for success. This includes our five-year program in Biotechnology that allows you to start earning a master’s degree with a Medical Biotechnology concentration while you are an undergraduate student.

So, in just 5 years, the students earn a BS in Medical Biotechnology, a MS in Medical Biotechnology with an embedded Medical Biotechnology Certificate.

With the skills and concepts covered in the program, the students can find employment in any of the following fields:
Research Scientist, Research Assistant, Research co-coordinator, Biomedical Device Engineer, Quality Control scientist, Regenerative Medicine Scientist and many more.

General Program Information

The following standards for admission to the program must be met by the end of the first semester of the third year of study:

  • Apply when you have completed at least 75 semester hours toward the Bachelor of Science degree with
    a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.25
  • Must have a minimum grade point average of 3.50 in all major core and concentration courses attempted
  • Completion of all major core requirements for the Bachelor of Science degree

Program Requirements

The undergraduate hours consist of:

  • 18 semester hours of Foundation Mathematics and English courses
  • 30 semester hours of General Education
  • 13 semester hours of Experiential Learning
  • 50 semester hours of Program Core and Concentration

The graduate hours consist of:

  • 18 semester hours of Program Core
  • 6 semester hours of Experiential Learning
  • 12 semester hours of Concentration
cabp biotech

The Capital Area Biotechnology Partnership (CABP)

Harrisburg University of Science and Technology plays a leadership role in the Capital Area Biotechnology Partnership (CABP). Working with educators and other leaders from Central Pennsylvania’s area biotech firms, government agencies, industry, local community colleges, and area school districts, CABP delivers a quality education to high school and college students, and science career-seekers.

Program Lead

 Jacquelyn  Maddox, Ph.D.

Jacquelyn Maddox, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences and Undergraduate Program Lead for Biotechnology

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Full Time Faculty

Jacquelyn Maddox, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences and Undergraduate Program Lead for Biotechnology

Mrunalini (Leena) Pattarkine, Ph.D.

Program Lead Biotechnology, Director Capital Area Biotechnology Partnership

Corporate Faculty

Program Courses

This program requires a total of 48 to 55 semester hours: 23 semester hours from core courses and 25-32 semester hours completed in one of the following concentrations: Food Safety and Quality Assurance, General Biotechnology, Medical Biotechnology, Nanobiotechnology, Nanobiotechnology and Nanofabrication, and Pharmaceutical Design. The semester hour value of each course appears in parentheses ( ).

BTEC 100 – Nanobiotechnology Explorations (2 credits)

This is an introductory course to nanobiotechnology, which is the use of existing elements of natural systems to develop new technologies. The concepts of how nano-structures are characterized are defined and a review is conducted of the applications of this new technology. The course includes a laboratory component in addition to lecture component.

BTEC 170 – Introduction to Biotechnology (3 credits)

Biotechnology explores biological processes to produce raw materials, foodstuffs, and medical treatments for use by humans. The industry is key for generating income worldwide and feeds into the pharmaceutical, textile, food and agricultural industries. The course centers on three main goals: 1) to understand the biological processes involved in biotechnology methods; 2) to identify and criticize the benefits and drawbacks of current methods; and 3) to review new emerging technologies that focus on ecological solutions.

BTEC 210 – Food and Nutrition (3 credits)

This course provides an overview of the diet and nutritional requirements of protein, energy, whole grains, major vitamins and minerals and other food groups that are determinants of health and diseases in human populations. The sources, recommended intake, role of major nutrients, and metabolism are explored, in addition to case studies that address the impact of nutrition on human growth and development of chronic or acute diseases (i.e. cancer, diabetes, heart disease, etc.).

BTEC 220 – Applied Nanobiotechnology (4 credits)

This course addresses applications of nanobiotechnology for various fields such as medicine, drug-delivery, food and environment. The student explores how various nanostructures can be “functionalized” to perform targeted interactions. The need, application, limitations, and ethical positions for these topics are covered through a multimodal approach of lecture, lab, presentations, group discussions and interactive modules.

BTEC 250 – Medical Biotechnologies of 2020 (3 credits)

The field of biotechnology is evolving quickly with innovative technologies. The course covers the concept of biomarkers, its application in diagnostics and therapeutics. Topics such as pharmacogenomics, gene therapy, medical imaging, regenerative medicine, prosthetics, and point of care devices are at the interface of emerging medical technologies and applied biotechnology. This course serves to introduce the student to these emerging trends and technologies in the field of medical biotechnology. Offered Spring Semester, annually, or as needed.

BTEC 311 – Pharmacology I (3 credits)

This course studies how specific small molecules can impact and affect body behavior and responses. Small molecules or drugs made by man or from nature can modulate special gates and enzymes. These concepts are the first step into the world of pharmacology. The understanding of this course depends heavily on knowing what is considered normal for the body. Consequently, human physiological systems are featured as an integral part of this course.

BTEC 350 – Biotechnology Techniques (4 credits)

This course develops the skills, competencies, and fundamentals of research procedures in biotechnology. The student is exposed to a variety of relevant biotechnology techniques in the laboratory at research or commercial centers.

BTEC 351 – Biotechnology Applications (4 credits)

This laboratory-intensive course examines the various applications in the field of biotechnology at a molecular level, which aids the understanding of cellular mechanisms. The power, limitation, proper use and theoretical framework around biotechnology applications are explored. Biotechnology-related workforce growth, and the area corporations involved in this field, provide case study illustrations.

BTEC 370 – Genetically Modified Foods (3 credits)

This course explores the impact of plant and animal biotechnology on food nutrition and provides an understanding of the techniques and methods in genetically-modified food products. The advantages and disadvantages of genetically modified foods are explored, in addition to cultivation, production, processing, and manufacturing issues that are related to genetically modified foods. A broad knowledge of the current laws governing use of genetically modified foods, the ethical discussions surrounding production of these foods, and the global impact of those laws will be studied.

BTEC 401 – Biosensor Technology (4 credits)

The course covers aspects such as: what is a biosensor, the types of biosensors, and how to develop a specific assay for a specific detection system. Also covered are the major techniques used in developing and functionalizing nanoparticles for specific biosensor assays. Applications of biosensor technology in medical diagnostics, environmental monitoring, bioremediation and quality control in food industry are reviewed.

BTEC 405 – Applied Food Microbiology (3 credits)

The course provides insight into the most recent developments of food-borne pathogens, toxins, and contaminents that may occur in a food production plant environment. The course is delivered in classroom and laboratory environments and includes a mixture of theory, demonstrations, and practical sessions on the fundamentals of food microbiology and food safety. Offered as needed.

BTEC 435 – Computer-Aided Drug Design (4 credits)

Conducting drug research in a directed and specific manner previously relied on how many small molecules could be tested per unit time. Over recent years, more and more drug design is coordinated with available literature and modern databases containing overwhelming amounts of information. To identify new potential drug molecules, automation has become essential to narrow the field before embarking on a biological screening process.

NANO 211 – Materials, Safety & Equipment (3 credits)

Nanofabrication processing equipment and materials handling procedures with a focus on safety, environment, and health issues. Course is available only at The Pennsylvania State University – University Park campus.

NANO 212 – Basic Nanotech Processes (3 credits)

Step-by-step description of equipment and processes needed in top-down, bottom-up, and hybrid nanofabrication. Course available only at The Pennsylvania University – University Park campus.

NANO 213 – Materials in Nanotechnology (3 credits)

The use of materials for nanotechnology as well as the unique material properties available at the nano-scale. Course available only at The Pennsylvania State University – University Park campus.

NANO 214 – Patterning for Nanofabrication (3 credits)

Lithographic process from substrate preparation to exposure; process from development through inspection; advanced optical lithographic techniques. Course available only at The Pennsylvania State University – University Park campus.

NANO 215 – Mtrls Modific in Nano Applications (3 credits)

Processing steps used in modifying material properties in nanofabrication. Course available only at The Pennsylvania State University – University Park campus.

NANO 216 – Character Testing/Nanofab Struc (3 credits)

Measurements and techniques essential for controlling device fabrication. Course available only at The Pennsylvania State University – University Park campus.

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