Botany Main Syllabus


1. Microbiology and Plant Pathology: Structure and reproduction/multiplication of viruses, viroids,bacteria, fungi and mycoplasma; Applications of microbiology in agriculture, industry, medicine and incontrol of soil and water pollution; Prion and Prion hypothesis. Important crop diseases caused byviruses, bacteria, mycoplasma, fungi and nematodes; Modes of infection and dissemination; Molecularbasis of infection and disease resistance/defence; Physiology of parasitism and control measures;Fungal toxins; Modelling and disease forecasting; Plant quarantine.

2. Cryptogams: Algae, fungi, lichens, bryophytes, pteridophytes - structure and reproduction fromevolutionary viewpoint; Distribution of Cryptogams in India and their ecological and economicimportance.

3. Phanerogams: Gymnosperms: Concept of Progymnosperms; Classification and distribution ofgymnosperms; Salient features of Cycada-les, Ginkgoales, Coniferales and Gnetales, their structure andreproduction; General account of Cycadofilicales, Bennettitales and Cordaitales; Geological time scale;Type of fossils and their study techniques. Angiosperms: Systematics, anatomy, embryology,palynology and phylogeny. Taxonomic hierarchy; International Code of Botanical Nomenclature;Numerical taxonomy and chemotaxonomy; Evidence from anatomy, embryology and palynology.Origin and evolution of angiosperms; Comparative account of various systems of classification ofangiosperms; Study of angiospermic families – Mangnoliaceae, Ranunculaceae, Brassicaceae,Rosaceae, Fabaceae, Euphorbiaceae, Malvaceae, Dipterocarpaceae, Apiaceae, Asclepiadaceae,Verbenaceae, Solanaceae, Rubiaceae, Cucurbitaceae, Astera-ceae, Poaceae, Arecaceae, Liliaceae,Musaceae and Orchidaceae. Stomata and their types; Glandular and non-glandular trichomes; Unusualsecondary growth; Anatomy of C3 and C4 plants; Xylem and phloem differentiation; Wood anatomy.Development of male and female gametophytes, pollination, fertilization; Endosperm - its developmentand function; Patterns of embryo development; Polyembroyony and apomixes; Applications ofpalynology; Experimental embryology including pollen storage and test-tube fertilization.

4. Plant Resource Development: Domestication and introduction of plants; Origin of cultivatedplants; Vavilov’s centres of origin; Plants as sources for food, fodder, fibre, spices, beverages, edibleoils, drugs, narcotics, insecticides, timber, gums, resins and dyes, latex, cellulose, starch and itsproducts; Perfumery; Importance of Ethnobotany in Indian context; Energy plantations; BotanicalGardens and Herbaria.

5. Morphogenesis: Totipotency, polarity, symmetry and dfferentiation; Cell, tissue, organ andprotoplast culture; Somatic hybrids and Cybrids; Micropropagation; Somaclonal variation and itsapplications; Pollen haploids, embryo rescue methods and their applications.


1. Cell Biology: Techniques of cell biology; Prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells - structural andultrastructural details; Structure and function of extracellular matrix (cell wall), membranes-celladhesion, membrane transport and vesicular transport; Structure and function of cell organelles(chloroplasts, mitochondria, ER, dictyosomes ribosomes, endosomes, lysosomes, peroxisomes);Cytoskelaton and microtubules; Nucleus, nucleolus, nuclear pore complex; Chromatin and nucleosome;Cell signalling and cell receptors; Signal transduction; Mitosis and meiosis; Molecular basis of cellcycle; Numerical and structural variations in chromosomes and their significance; Chromatinorganization and packaging of genome; Polytene chromosomes; B-chromosomes – structure, behaviourand significance.

2. Genetics, Molecular Biology and Evolution: Development of genetics; Gene versus allele concepts(Pseudoalleles); Quantitative genetics and multiple factors; Incomplete dominance, polygenicinheritance, multiple alleles; Linkage and crossing over; Methods of gene mapping, includingmolecular maps (idea of mapping function); Sex chromosomes and sex-linked inheritance, sexdetermination and molecular basis of sex differentiation; Mutations (biochemical and molecular basis);Cytoplasmic inheritance and cytoplasmic genes (including genetics of male sterility). Structure andsynthesis of nucleic acids and proteins; Genetic code and regulation of gene expression; Genesilencing; Multigene families; Organic evolution – evidences, mechanism and theories. Role of RNA inorigin and evolution.

3. Plant Breeding, Biotechnology and Biostatistics: Methods of plant breeding – introduction,selection and hybridization (pedigree, backcross, mass selection, bulk method); Mutation, polyploidy,male sterility and heterosis breeding; Use of apomixes in plant breeding; DNA sequencing; Geneticengineering – methods of transfer of genes; Transgenic crops and biosafety aspects; Development anduse of molecular markers in plant breeding; Tools and techniques - probe, southern blotting, DNAfingerprinting, PCR and FISH. Standard deviation and coefficient of variation (CV); Tests ofsignificance (Z-test, ttest and chi-square test); Probability and distributions (normal, binomial andPoisson); Correlation and regression.

4. Physiology and Biochemistry: Water relations, mineral nutrition and ion transport, mineraldeficiencies; Photosynthesis – photochemical reactions; photophosphorylation and carbon fixationpathways; C3, C4 and CAM pathways; Mechanism of phloem transport; Respiration (anerobic andaerobic, including fermentation) – electron transport chain and oxidative phosphorylation;Photorespiration; Chemiosmotic theory and ATP synthesis; Lipid metabolism; Nitrogen fixation andnitrogen metabolism; Enzymes, coenzymes; Energy transfer and energy conservation; Importance ofsecondary metabolites; Pigments as photoreceptors (plastidial pigments and phytochrome); Plantmovements; Photoperiodism and flowering, vernalization, senescence; Growth substances – theirchemical nature, role and applications in agri-horticulture; Growth indices, growth movements; Stressphysiology (heat, water, salinity, metal); Fruit and seed physiology; Dormancy, storage and germinationof seed; Fruit ripening – its molecular basis and manipulation.

5. Ecology and Plant Geography: Concept of ecosystem; Ecological factors; Concepts and dynamicsof community; Plant succession; Concept of biosphere; Ecosystems; Conservation; Pollution and itscontrol (including phytoremediation); Plant indicators; Environment (Protection) Act. Forest types ofIndia - Ecological and economic importance of forests, afforestation, deforestation and social forestry;Endangered plants, endemism, IUCN categories, Red Data Books; Biodiversity and its conservation;Protected Area Network; Convention on Biological Diversity; Farmers’ Rights and IntellectualProperty Rights; Concept of Sustainable Development; Biogeochemical cycles; Global warming andclimatic change; Invasive species; Environmental Impact Assessment; Phytogeographical regions ofIndia.

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