Microbial biotechnologies applied to plant production

A.Y. 2019/2020
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course will provide to the students current knowledge about the state of the art and developing perspectives about microbial biotechnologies in promotion of plant growth and soil fertility. Environmental biotechnologies applied to the disposal of agricultural waste biomasses will be also outlined.
Expected learning outcomes
The course will provide knowledge tools for the evaluation of potentials and limits of the application of microbial biotechnologies for plant production.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
Course syllabus
-Microbial identification and study of environmental microbial communities; Microbial ecology methods: molecular microbial ecology
-Role of microorganisms in soil formation, fertility maintenance and cycle of organic matter. Soil microbiota, rhizosphere, phyllosphere
-Association between plants and microorganisms: mycorrhizic and attinorrhizic simbiosis, nitrogen fixiation and nitrogen fixing simbiosis. Nodule formation
-Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria: i) microbial mechanisms of direct plant promotion, biostimulation and biofertilisation, ii) microbial mechanisms of indirect plant promotion, antagonistic microorganisms. Microbial inoculants: production, field application, agronomical effects
-Microorganisms associated to insects. Symbiotic control of detrimental insects or vectors of phytopathologies
-Microbial biotechnologies for plant biomass transformation and disposal: anaerobic digestion, sludge treatment.
-Soil bioremediation. Rhizoremediation
Prerequisites for admission
Basic knowledge in general and agricultural microbiology is required
Teaching methods
5.5 CFU lessons
0.5 CFU laboratory lessons
Teaching Resources
- Book: "Microbiologia agroambientale", a cura di Biavati & Sorlini. 2008 Ed. Casa Editrice Ambrosiana
- Book: "Microrganismi benefici per le piante", a cura di M. Iaccarino. 2006 Ed. Idelson-Gnocchi
- Lecture notes
- Scientific publications
Assessment methods and Criteria
The final examination is written and aims to verify the knowledge acquired by the student. The student is required to answer to three open questions in a maximum time of 1.5 h. Questions refer to the topics presented during lessons. Examples of the questions will be provided during the lessons.
AGR/16 - AGRICULTURAL MICROBIOLOGY - University credits: 6
Laboratories: 8 hours
Lessons: 44 hours
every day by appointment
DeFENS, via Mangiagalli 25, Milano - room 3023