George Mason University > University Catalog > Course Descriptions
2003-04 University Catalog George Mason University

Biodefense (BIOD)

College of Arts and Sciences

601 Foundations of Biodefense Science and Technology I (3:3:0). Basic biology of living systems including cell structure and function, metabolism, genetics, and biodiversity. Areas covered are important to comprehending the technology and systems involved in biodefense. May not be used for credit toward a graduate degree in biodefense.

602 Foundations of Biodefense Science and Technology II (3:3:0). Required course that covers basic chemical and physical science topics behind biodefense. Areas covered are important to comprehending technology and systems involved. May not be used for credit toward the master's degree in biodefense.

603 Introduction to Biodefense: Fundamentals of Microbiology (3:3:1). Prerequisites: BIOD 601 and 602 or the equivalent courses. Lecture and laboratory course that emphasizes basic principles of microbiology, including virology and mycology. Structure, metabolism, genetics, and virulence properties of infectious microorganisms are stressed as well as the immune response to microorganisms. Laboratory covers basic techniques of isolation, propa gation, and identification of microbes. Not available to students who have had a course in microbiology. May not be used for credit toward the master's degree in biodefense.

604 Introduction to Biodefense/Threat Analysis I: Bacterial Agents (3:3:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, and 603 unless waived. Required course that covers the pathology, metabolism, and threat of bacterial agents that can be utilized as biological weapons. Subjects include Bacillus anthracis, Yersinia pestis, and others chosen by instructor.

605 Introduction to Biodefense/Threat Analysis II: Viral Agents (3:3:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, and 603 or permission of instructor. Required course that will cover the pathology, metabolism, and threat of viral agents that can be utilized as biological weapons. Subjects will include Variola (smallpox), hemorrhagic fevers (Marburg, Ebola, Dengue) and others chosen by instructor.

606 Introduction to Biodefense/Threat Analysis III: Agricultural Biodefense (3:3:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, and 603, or permission of instructor. Covers agents that can be utilized for the disruption of agriculture and livestock. Fungal, bacterial, and viral agents are discussed as well as local and global economic and social impact of disruption of the food supplies.

607 Introduction to Biodefense/Threat Analysis IV: Toxins (3:3:0) . Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, and 603 unless waived. Required course that will discuss the threat of toxins as biological weapons. Special focus on the microbiological toxins including botulinum toxin, and biochemical action of toxins. Comparison to chemical weapons and debate about classification as such.

702 Special Topics in Biodefense Seminar (1:1:0). Prerequisite: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. In-depth examination of advanced topics in defense against biological agents. Topic depends on instructor's specialty. May be repeated for credit with advisor's permission.

703 Special Topics in Biodefense Seminar (Presenting) (1:1:0). Prerequisite: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Student research and presentations on approved topic. May be repeated for credit with advisor's permission.

704 Principles of Toxicology (3:3:0). Prerequisite: A course in physiology and in biochemistry, or permission of instructor.An introduction to the scientific principles and biological underpinnings of toxicology. The course surveys the processes of absorption, distribution, metabolic transformation, and elimination of foreign substances in the body, as well as mechanisms of toxicity. Students will gain an understanding of genetic toxicology, cancer formation, developmental and reproductive toxicology, as well as target organ toxicology (including effects on blood, liver, skin, and on the urinary, cardiovascular, respiratory, nervous, and immune systems). The course concludes with an overview of several types of toxic agents and their interactions with biological systems.

705 Detecting Production of Biological Agents (2:2:0). Prerequisite: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Involves the study of detection techniques for biological weapon production facilities. A major goal is to show students the difference in detecting a large-scale, state-run facility and detecting a home laboratory. In addition, students will learn the differences between il licit biological agents versus biological agents that can and are used for pharmaceutical research.

706 History of Biological Agent Use and Treaties (2:2:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. A lecture course, which studies the historical uses of biological weapons as well as treaties that have been signed by various countries and powers concerning their use.

707 Detection Techniques in a Bioterror Attack (3:3:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Involves the study of detection techniques for a biological weapon that has been released in various forms. Students will gain an understanding of both how different detectors work as well as how to interpret data that these detection devices collect.

708 Epidemiology of a Bioterror Attack (3:3:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. This course will teach the basics of epidemiology as well as unique issues in epidemiology that biological agents used as weapons present. The course includes not only how a disease would spread naturally, but also how to prevent it from spreading. Also, students will learn differences in natural and unnatural outbreaks.

709 Nonproliferation in Biodefense (2:2:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. This course involves current issues in nonproliferation of biological agents as a weapon of mass destruction. Students will study various theories in nonproliferation as well as look at nonproliferation in practice in recent history.

710 Approaches to Bioweapon Medical Treatment and Response (3:3:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. This course will involve research, treatment, and preparedness strategies against biological agents. Course will focus on various strategies including immunological, pharmaceutical, and medical treatment methodologies and designs.

711 Techniques in Immunology Lecture (1:1:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Introduces students to the theory of immunological techniques and the application of those techniques.

712 Techniques in Immunology Laboratory (1:0:3). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Prerequisite or corequisite: BIOD 711. Laboratory techniques discussed in BIOD 711 including enzyme-linked immunosorbant assay, protein electrophoresis, FLOW cytometry, and vaccine preparation. Not available to students who have had an undergraduate laboratory course in immunology.

721 Coordinated Response to a Bioterror Attack (2:2:0). Prerequisite: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Provides information for defending against biological attacks. Topics to be covered are on-scene procedures following the initial discovery of such agents, site boundaries for biological agents, gross decontamination procedures, site set-up procedures, agent removal, and case studies of hypothetical infections. Students will learn the critical response requirements of a biological attack.

722 Examining Terrorist Groups (3:3:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. History of known organized terrorist activity, including study of common cultural and historical correla tions. Study of groups' modus operandi. Latest developments in terrorist profiling.

723 Counterterrorism and Civil Rights (3:3:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Analysis of legal issues associated with counterterrorism surveillance, interrogation, search, detainment, and decontamination in the context of civil rights and the rule of law.

724 Incident Response Information Technology (2:2:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Effective information-sharing on bioterrorist incidents among federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies through databases and computer software.

742 Modern Geographic Techniques in Detection as Tracking (3:3:0). Prerequisites: GEOG 300 and GEOG 311 or permission of instructor. Elective course on the utilization of GIS, remote sensing/satellite imagery, and spatial analysis techniques that can be used to monitor biological events and plan/coordinate response.

761 Dispersal Patterns of Biological Agents (3:3:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Introduction to military and terrorist methods of dispersal patterns. Course covers the physics of aerosols, engineering and mechanics of building ventilation systems, and mechanical dissemination including hand-held, automatic, vehicle, and truck-mounted systems. Course also covers viability of specific agents involved.

762 Into the Hot Zone: Working in a High Threat Environment (2:2:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Introduction course includes methodology of working in a Biosafety Level 3 or 4 environment. Special attention is focused on responding to a biowarfare or bioterrorism related event.

763 History of Genetically Engineered Bioweapons (2:2:0). Prerequisites: BIOD 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, or permission of instructor. Course covers the history of the genetic manipulation of bioweapons. Special attention is paid to the advent of molecular techniques, as well as the general microbiology techniques in making strains of both pathogenic and nonpathogenic organisms more virulent and/or survivable.