Syllabus for msc botany entrance exam?

M.Sc Botany
Note: The syllabus prescribed for the entrance test has been divided into fifteen units. Each unit
carries a weightage of four marks. Paper setters are required to set four multiple choice
type questions with only one correct or most appropriate answer separately for each unit,
giving uniform representation to the whole syllabus contained therein.
1. Structure of viruses with special reference to TMV, lytic and lysogenic cycles in
viruses; structure, reproduction and role of Cyanobacteria in biotechnology with
special reference to Nostoc. Structure and life history of Phytopthora, Rhizopus,
Morchella., Puccinia and Alternaria. Thallus structure and life history of Chlorella,
Volvox, Oedogonium, Chara. Vaucheria, Ectocarpus and Batrachospermum.
2. Bryophytes--origin and evolution of sporophyte, apogamy and apospory; structure
and reproduction in Marchantia, Anthoceros and Polytrichum. Morphology, anatomy
and reproduction in Rhynia, Lycopodium, Equisetum and Marsilea. Heterospory, and
stelar evolution in Pteridophytes.
3. Structure and functions of cell wall and plasma membrane, golgi apparatus,
endoplasmic reticulum, chloroplast, mitochondria and ribosomes, fluid mosaic model
of plasma membrane, ultrastructure of nuclear membrane. Morphology of
chromosomes; satellite chromosomes, nucleolus, organization of chromosomes with
special reference to nucleosome model; mitosis and meiosis; chromosome alterations-
-origin, meiotic behavior and genetic consequences of deletions, duplications,
inversions and translocations, transposable elements (maize and Drosophila); DNA
damage and repair.
4. Mendel's laws of inheritance, allelic and non-allelic interactions; dominance (3:1),
epistasis (13:3, 12:3:1) duplicate (15:1) and complementary (9:7) genes with suitable
examples and problems, structure and functions of mitochondrial and plastid DNA,
plasmids- structure and functions. DNA structure and mechanism of replication,
major enzymes involved in replication and their roles, satellite and repetitive DNA;
gene expression--- concept and structure of gene, lac operon (Operon model) and
regulation of gene expression; mechanism of transcription, enzymatic machinery
involved and its role.
5. Translation- concept of genetic code, structure and functions of ribosomes, tRNA and
mRNA in translation, activation of amino acids, mechanism of translation (initiation,
elongation and termination). Tools and techniques of recombinant DNA technology,
essential features of cloning vectors (Plasmids, Cosmids and Phages), genomic and
cDNA library, organization of Ti plasmid of Agrobacterium and its role in gene
transfer technology.
6. Plant Taxonomy--components, scope and need; plant identification keys; principles of
International Code of Botanical nomenclature (ICBN); taxonomic categories; type
concept. Role of cytology and phyto-chemistry in taxonomy; principals of numerical
taxonomy; artificial, natural and phylogenetic classification (a brief overview only);
salient features of classification systems proposed by Bentham and Hooker, and
7. Morphology of angiosperms (vegetative and reproductive features), origin of
angiosperms (monophyletic versus polyphyletic); character evaluation of primitive
angiosperms with special reference to Magnolia and Ranunculus; convergent
evolution with examples from flowering plants. Diagnostic taxonomic features of
Ranunculaceae, Brassicaceae, Malvaceae, Papilionaceae, Rosaceae, Asteraceae,
Solanaceae, Lamiaceae, Liliaceae, Iridaceae and Poaceae.
8. Organization of the root apical meristem, differentiation of primary and secondary
tissues and their roles; structural modification of root system for storage, support,
respiration, propagation and microbial interaction. Shoot apical meristem and its
histological organization; vascularization of primary shoot in monocotyledons and
dicotyledons; cambium and its functions.
9. Formation of secondary xylem; general account of wood structure; formation of
growth rings, sapwood and heart wood; secondary phloem-- structure-function
relationships; periderm; anomalous secondary growth in Dracena; anatomy of
monocotyledon (wheat, maize) and dicotyledonous (Nymphaea and sunflower) leaf.
General characters of gymnosperms; Sporne's system of classification (criteria and
salient features); morphology, anatomy and reproduction in Cycas, Pinus and
10. Structure of flower; functions of anther and pistil, development of male and female
gametophytes; pollination mechanisms; plant-pollinator interactions; pollen-pistil
interaction, self incompatibility; double fertilization; development of embryo and
endosperm (in Capsella and Poa); fruit development, seed appendages and seed
dispersal mechanisms
11. Importance of water to plant life, physical properties of water, diffusion, osmosis,
imbibition, water transport through xylem, physiology of stomata, evidences and
mechanism of phloem transport, source sink relationship; essential macro and micro
nutrient elements, criteria of essentiality, role of nutrients, ion uptake, mineral
deficiency symptoms.
Differentiation and morphogenesis (elementary idea), phases of growth, physiology
of dormancy, seed germination, factors regulating seed germination
12. Photosynthetic pigments, absorption and action spectra, enhancement effect, concept
of two photosystems, Z-scheme, photophosphorylation, Photorespiration, C3, C4 and
CAM pathways. Aerobic and anaerobic respiration, Krebs cycle, electron transport
mechanism, oxidative phosphorylation (chemi-osmotic mechanism).
13. Discovery and nomenclature of enzymes, characteristics of enzymes concept of
holoenzyme, apoenzyme, coenzyme and cofactors, mechanism of enzyme action;
biology of nitrogen fixation, ammonium assimilation, biosynthesis and degradation of
saturated fatty acids (β-oxidation).
Photoperiodism, vernalization, tropic and nastic movements; physiological effects of
auxins, gibberellins, cytokinins, abscisic acid and ethylene; photomorphogenesis,
discovery and physiological role of phytochromes and cryptochromes
14. Plants and environment--- atmosphere (gaseous composition), water (water cycle);
light (global radiation, photosynthetically active radiation), temperature, soil
(development, soil profile, physico-chemical properties). Morphological, anatomical
and physiological adaptation of plants to water, temperature, light, wind, fire and
salinity; population ecology---primary and secondary characters of population,
regulation, inter- and intra-population interaction.
15. Community ecology---community characteristics (analytic and synthetic); ecological
succession (Hydrosere and Xerosere); Ecosystems: structure, abiotic and biotic
components, food chains, food webs, ecological pyramids, energy flow,
biogeochemical cycles of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus.
Morphology, cultivation and economic importance of rice, wheat, and maize, types of
plant fibres, extraction, processing and uses of cotton and jute; types of vegetable oil,
extraction, processing and uses of groundnut and mustard; distribution status,
cultivation, part used, uses/abuses of medicinal plants viz. Podophyllum, Atropa and