The field of biotechnology involves the use of microorganisms such as bacteria and yeast, or biological substances such as enzymes, to carry out industrial or manufacturing processes. Cloning is a good example. In modern (molecular) biotechnology, the desired characteristics are selected at the molecular level and added to an organism's genetic makeup. Applications of biotechnology include production of drugs, synthetic hormones, and bulk foodstuffs as well as the bioconversion of organic waste and the use of genetically altered bacteria in the cleanup of oil spills.
A course in biotechnology will include many of the following topics: