Integrative biology


Specific training objectives

At the end of the studies , students will be able to:

• Mobilise multidisciplinary knowledge to design experiments that can involve the various levels of structural and functional organisation of the living.

• Interpret data resulting from multiple phenomena: from the cell to the organism as a whole, in its normal and pathological states.

Many biological questions can best be tackled with a multidisciplinary approach. The main objective of this specialisation is to familiarize students with this concept by encouraging them to select courses from a variety of disciplines.

The Master of Science in Molecular Life Sciences (MLS) programme is designed to expose students to an Integrative Biology spirit by combining course and practical work from a variety of disciplines including experimental and computational approaches.

The course “Sequence a Genome” that is taken by all MLS students illustrates this concept. This course covers all the steps from preparing DNA to the assembly and annotation of a genome. This is a “hands on” course where a combination of computational approaches and biological insight is an essential feature for success.


The MLS subject area “Integrative Biology” shares two common activities with the other MLS subject areas. A unique experimental class “Sequence a Genome” and scientific writing class where the students write a review article and a research proposal.

Students are encouraged to select a large variety of elective courses covering numerous topics including:

  • Cellular and Developmental Biology
  • Genetics and Genomics
  • Signal Transduction
  • Biotechnology
  • Computational Biology
  • Plant Biology
  • Microbiology

To acquire practical expertise students complete a “first step” project during the first semester and the Master project in our laboratories.

This subject area provides students with a broad perspective in Biology that is of high importance for academic and applied research, teaching, journalism and other professional activities where a solid background in biology is required.


© M. Gambetta

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Integrative biology