ISC Class 12 Biotechnology Syllabus 2022-23: Download Revised Class 12th Biotechnology Syllabus PDF

ISC Class 12 Biotechnology Syllabus 2023: Biotechnology is an ISC Class 12 elective paper offered to the senior secondary under Council For The Indian School Certificate Examinations. Check here the latest ISC Class 12th Biotechnology Syllabus for the 2023 ISC Biotechnology board examination. 

Download ISC Class 12 Biotechnology Syllabus 2023 PDF
Download ISC Class 12 Biotechnology Syllabus 2023 PDF

ISC Class 12th Biotechnology Syllabus 2023: Biotechnology is a field of science that applies biological processes, organisms, or systems to develop products or technologies that improve human lives. It involves using living organisms or their derivatives to create new products or processes. Biotechnology has multiple applications in various areas such as medicine, agriculture, food, and environmental science. Some examples of biotechnology applications include genetic engineering, fermentation, bioremediation, and tissue engineering. Thus, due to its vast, elaborate and expansive nature, Biotechnology is one of the favourite subjects of students, especially those who are interested in medicine and allied fields. In this article, we have provided here the ISC Class 12 Biotechnology syllabus 2022-23. You can view the whole content and download the PDF of the syllabus free of cost. 

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Related: ISC Class 12th Date sheet 2023: Check the full date sheet with the guidelines here

ISC Board Class 12 Biotechnology Syllabus

The ISC class 12 Biotechnology subject is divided into two papers: theory and project work.

Biotechnology Paper 1: Theory will be of 70 marks, time duration 3 hours. 

The Biotechnology Paper 2: Project Work will be of 15 marks. 

Check the ISC Board Class 12 Biotechnology Syllabus 2022-23 below.


1. Molecular Biology

(i) Nucleic acids and their estimation: an understanding of nucleic acids, their biochemical structure.

DNA as the genetic material (Hershey and Chase experiment).

DNA (B-DNA)– physical and chemical structure; definition, double helical model of DNA, (Watson and Crick’s); Nucleotide and nucleoside; Chargaff’s Law, method of replication of DNA, various replicative enzymes in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms, example topoisomerases,

helicase, SSBs polymerases, primases, ligases. Concept of semi conservative (with respect to Messelson and Stahl experiment and Taylor experiment on Vicia faba using radiolabelled thymidine) and semi-discontinuous replication, (leading and lagging strands), okazaki fragments. 

RNA – definition, various types of RNAs such as mRNA, tRNA (Clover leaf model with

diagram; brief introduction to L-shaped model), rRNA their structure and functions.

Techniques of nucleic acid estimation – colorimetry and UV-visible spectrophotometry.

(ii) Protein Synthesis: synthesis of different RNAs, and the complete mechanism of polypeptide chain formation.

Concept of central dogma.

From genes to proteins:

(a) Concept of transcriptional unit, promoter, structural and terminator region; concept of split gene - intron and exon; monocistronic and polycistronic RNA, hnRNA;

(b) Transcription – explanation of the complete process including enzymes involved in the process; Post-transcriptional changes and their significance in eukaryotes –

polyadenylation, capping and RNA splicing;

(c) Concept of reverse transcription;

(d) Genetic code – properties of genetic code, start and stop codons, anticodons.

(e) The translation of RNA to protein – complete mechanism of chain initiation, elongation and termination, the role of tRNA, mRNA and rRNA in protein synthesis. (Post translational changes not included).

(iii) Gene regulation in prokaryotes Operon concept – lac operon and trp operon.

2. Genetic Engineering

(i) Introduction to gene cloning and genetic engineering: concept of cloning and vectors.

Tools of recombinant DNA technology, types of restriction endonucleases and other enzymes used in gene cloning; techniques involved in extraction and purification of DNA from bacterial, plant and animal cells.

Selection of host cells: eukaryotic and prokaryotic.

Vectors: Characteristics and types such as plasmids -pBR322, pUC (in pBR322- presence of two antibiotic resistant genes and in pUCpresence of lac Z gene to be taught), cosmids, phages (M13 and λ), YACs, BACs (to be taught with reference to stability and their carrying capacity), animal and plant viruses (CaMV, retrovirus, SV40 – only names of viruses, no details).

Transfer of recombinants into host cells –

(a) Vectorless methods - basic concept of transformation, transfection, electroporation, liposome mediated gene transfer, microinjection, biolistic

(b) Vector-mediated method - Agrobacterium tumefaciens induced gene transfer.

Methods of identification of recombinants- Direct selection (green fluorescent selection) and Insertional inactivation (Blue-white selection, antibiotic resistance).

A basic understanding of DNA libraries – construction of genomic and cDNA libraries.

Construction of a recombinant DNA molecule.

(ii) Innovations in Biotechnology: produced by using modern biotechnological tools, (select examples of products already available)

(a) Plants: Production of Flavr Savr tomatoes, Bt-crops and Golden rice.

(b) Healthcare: Production of recombinant hepatitis-B vaccine, Humulin, interferon and edible vaccines.

(c) Animal: Dolly the cloned sheep, Sources and characteristics of stem cells and their applications.

(d) Environmental biotechnology: bioremediation using oil-eating bacteria as an example.

(e) Industrial biotechnology: applications of industrial enzymes – rennet, subtilisin, amylase, papain.

(iii) Gene analysis techniques: various techniques involved in recombinant DNA technology.

DNA probes – definition and use. Low resolution mapping techniques: gel electrophoresis, southern blotting (details of the technique to be taught), western and northern blotting (a brief idea and their uses).

High resolution techniques: DNA sequencing- sequencing by chain termination, automated DNA sequencing. 

Site directed mutagenesis. 

DNA amplification by Polymerase chain reaction (PCR)– applications of PCR, steps and application of DNA profiling or DNA finger printing. 

3. Cell culture technology

A brief idea of tools and techniques involved in cell culture technology and their applications in microbial, plant tissue and animal cell cultures respectively.

(i) General tools and techniques used in cell culture technology

(a) Instruments - centrifuge, LAF hood and biosafety cabinets, pH meter, autoclave, vortex mixer, hot air oven, magnetic stirrer, weighing balance, micro filtration unit, incubator, CO2 incubator, inverted microscope, bioreactor (diagram, its components and their function)-stirred tank and sparged type (brief idea only), use of T flasks to propagate animal cells.

Only uses of the above instruments to be studied.

(b) Sterilization techniques for culture room, apparatus, transfer area, media, vitamins, and living  material;

(c) Cryopreservation (need and steps).

(d) Cell counting (direct counting by haemocytometer), cell viability by Evan’s blue stain and cell sorting (FACS only).

(e) Types of media (synthetic /defined, semi-synthetic/differential, complex/natural) Preparation of media: microbial media- LB agar and LB broth; Plant media-MS and White’s media; Animal media-

RPMI, DMEM and FBS - brief idea only. (includes inorganic and organic macronutrients and micronutrients, antibiotics, growth regulators for plants: auxins and cytokinins). 

Importance of pH and solidifying agents.

(ii) Microbial culture and its application. Fermentation process and growth kinetics- batch culture, fed batch culture, continuous culture (with the help of graphs only): Definition of turbidostat and chemostat: Products and application-SCP (definition and use), industrial enzyme-subtilisin (source and its use).

(iii) Plant tissue culture and its application. Isolation of single cell by mechanical and enzymatic methods, synchronisation of cell culture by chemical methods like starvation, inhibition and mitotic arrest.

Cellular totipotency-definition of cellular differentiation, de-differentiation, re- differentiation. Application of plant cell culture technology (methodology not required, only brief idea needed):

(a) Haploid production-androgenesis and gynogenesis and their significance.

(b) Triploid production-understanding and need for triploid production and its application (seedless crops).

(c) In-vitro pollination- concept and its application.

(d) Zygotic embryo culture- concept and its application, Embryo rescue (brief idea only).

(e) Somatic hybridisation-protoplast fusion (Pomato).

(f) Micropropagation and its significance.

(g) Developing virus free plants and synthetic seeds.

(h) Biodegradable plastics (concept of PHB).

(iv) Animal cell culture and its application.

Primary cell culture with mechanical and enzymatic disaggregation and its drawbacks;

Types of cell-lines: finite, continuous, adherent and suspension; scale up-mono layer by Roller bottle, application of animal cell culture-tissue, hybridoma technology, tissue engineering (definition only).

  1. Bioinformatics

(i) Introduction to bioinformatics; global bioinformatics databases and data retrieval tools; genomics, different types of sequences, types of sequence analysis.

Introduction to bioinformatics: definition and need.

An introduction to global bioinformatics databases (nucleotide and protein databases). Information sources such as EMBL, NCBI, DDBJ, SWISSPROT, GenBank, GENSCAN.

Data retrieval tools- ENTREZ, Taxonomy Browser.

(ii) Genomics: Definition, introduction, tools used in Genomics and its applications.

Definition of genomics. Types of genomics- structural and functional. Basic criteria in selecting the organism for its genome sequencing. Different types of sequences – cDNA, genomic DNA, ESTs (Expressed Sequence Tags) and STSs (Sequence Tagged Sites) and the different softwares (example gene scan).

Types of sequence analysis by using BLAST and FASTA –global, local, pair wise and multiple.

Human Genome Project - its objectives, the countries involved, its achievements and significance.

DNA microarray technology – definition and application only.

Concept of Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs).

(iii) Proteomics: definition, introduction and databases.

Types of Proteomics – structural, functional and expression; Important protein databases available for the public on the internet like PDB (Protein Data Bank), PIR (Protein Identification Resources).


  1. BAC: Bacterial Artificial Chromosomes
  2. BLAST: Basic Local Alignment Search Tool
  3. CTAB: Cetyl Trimethyl Ammonium Bromide
  4. DBM: Diazo–benzyl oxy–methyl paper
  5. DDBJ: DNA Database/ Data Bank of Japan
  6. ddNTP: Dideoxy Nucleoside triphosphate
  7. DMEM: Dulbecco Modified Eagle Medium
  8. EBI: European Bioinformatics Institute
  9. EMBL: European Molecular Biology Laboratory
  10. EST: Expressed Sequence Tag
  11. FACS: Fluorescence Activated Cell Sorting
  12. FASTA: Fast All
  13. FBS: Foetal Bovine Serum
  14. HEPA: High Energy Particulate Air
  15. HGP: Human Genome Project
  16. IBPGR: International Board of Plant Genetic Resources
  17. ICGEB: International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology
  18. IFN: Interferon
  19. LB medium: Luria and Bertani Medium
  20. MS medium: Murashige and Skoog medium
  21. NCBI: National Centre for Biotechnology Information
  22. NHGRI: National Human Genome Research Institute
  23. PAGE: Polyacrylamide Gel Electrophoresis
  24. PCR: Polymerization Chain Reaction
  25. PDB: Protein Database/ Data Bank
  26. PHB: Poly 3–Hydroxyl Butyrate
  27. PIR: Protein Information Resource
  28. RFLP: Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism
  29. RNA: Ribonucleic acid
  30. RPMI medium: Roswell Park Memorial Institute medium
  31. SCP: Single Cell Protein
  32. SDS – PAGE: Sodium Dodecyl Sulphate– Polyacrylamide Gel Electrophoresis
  1. SNP: Single Nucleotide Polymorphism
  2. SSBs: Single Stranded Binding Proteins
  3. STS: Sequence Tagged Site
  4. VNTR: Variable Number of Tandem Repeats
  5. YAC: Yeast Artificial Chromosome

To download ISC Class 12 Biotechnology syllabus 2023, click on the link below:

Download ISC Class 12 Biotechnology Syllabus 2023 PDF

Also check:

ICSE Syllabus 2023

ICSE Class 10 Previous Year Question Papers

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