General Microbiology

A.Y. 2021/2022
9
Max ECTS
80
Overall hours
SSD
BIO/19
Language
Italian
Learning objectives
The course aims to provide students with basic microbiology knowledge, and the general information necessary for the application of microbiological methodologies to biotechnology. The course focuses on the analysis of microbial cellular structure, physiology and genetics, on potential applications of microorganisms in biotechnology and on the mechanisms of pathogenesis by both bacteria and viruses.
Expected learning outcomes
The students will acquire detailed knowledge and understanding of the composition and fundamental biological processes of bacterial cells, and will achieve a clear understanding of microbial diversity at the level of metabolic processes and gene regulation.
The student will be able to use basic methods of microbiology and apply the cultural skills acquired in advanced courses.
Critical and judgmental skills, and ability of students to communicate what they have learned, are mostly developed through laboratory activities and discussion of the results obtained.
The microbiological culture acquired through this course will provide the student with the skills to study microbiology even in a completely autonomous way.
Course syllabus and organization

Linea AL

Responsible
Lesson period
First semester
With regard to online vs. conventional lectures, more information will be made available over the next months, based on the public health situation in Italy and in the Milan area.
Course syllabus
Characteristics of prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms, morphology of bacteria and eumycetes
Nutritional requisites of prokaryotes and culture methods; identification with 16S rRNA and molecular taxonomy
Bacterial growth and direct / indirect methods for assessing growth
Growth control: antibiotics

Cytology: membrane, cell wall, cytoplasm
Structural and biochemical differences between Bacteria / Archea
Structural and biochemical differences between Gram positive and Gram negative bacteria
Sporulation
The fundamental biological processes in Bacteria: DNA replication, transcription, translation cell wall biosynthesis
Mechanisms of gene regulation in response to nutritive availability: cAMP, ppGpp
Two-component regulation systems: regulation of flagellar motility
Microbial genetics: gene transfer: conjugation transformation, mobile genetic elements, transduction
Elements of virology: bacteriophages, examples of animal viruses (retrovirus, RNA viruses), mechanisms of infection and interaction with host cells
Antibiotics: mechanisms of action and resistance

Microbial metabolism: aerobic respiration, anaerobic respiration, fermentation
Oxygenic and anoxic photosynthesis, assimilation of CO2
Nitrogen Fixing
Mycete classification, life cycle, nutrition
Biogeochemical cycles (C, N, P, S)

Laboratory activities (1CFU = 16 HOURS)
Plating and isolation of pure cultures of microorganisms. Selective growth conditions (anaerobiosis, minimal and differential terrain). Growth curves and antibiotic sensitivity. Microscopy: observation of live cells, Gram staining. Antibiotic susceptibility tests.
Prerequisites for admission
Good basic knowledge of General Biology, Genetics
Teaching methods
frontal lectures (see programme below for details)
Laboratory classes (see programme below for details)
Teaching Resources
Textbook: Dehò G. e Galli E. Biologia dei microrganismi. Casa Editrice Ambrosiana
Lecture presentations available on the Ariel website
Assessment methods and Criteria
The final exam is structured as follows:
Verification of the ability to apply the basic knowledge acquired in the laboratory classes (drawing a bacterial growth curve on semilogarithmic paper)
Two open questions aimed at testing the knowledge of general concepts discussed in the lectures (e.g., basic biological processes in bacteria, gene regulation, energy metabolism).
Four open questions concerning more specific aspects discussed in the lectures
BIO/19 - MICROBIOLOGY - University credits: 9
Single bench laboratory practical: 16 hours
Lessons: 64 hours
Shifts:
Professor: Landini Paolo
Turno 1
Professor: Landini Paolo
Turno 2
Professor: Rossi Elio

Linea MZ

Responsible
Lesson period
First semester
More specific information of the delivery modes of training activities for the academic year 2021-2022 will be provided over the coming months, based on the evolution of the public health situation
Course syllabus
Prokaryote/eukaryote difference, morphology of bacteria and mycetes
Nutritional categories, cultural methods, methods for microbial identification and molecular taxonomy
Bacterial growth, direct/indirect evaluation methods
Growth control: antibiotics, action and resistance mechanisms
Prokaryote cytology: membrane, wall, cytoplasm; Bacteria/archaea; gram positive/negative
Spore formers and sporogenesis
Bacterial genetic material, DNA replication, mutations, natural selection, mutagens
Fundamental prokaryote processes: transcription, traduction, duplication
Mechanisms of gene regulation
bacterial genetics: horizontal gene exchange, transformation, conjugation, mobile genetic elements, transduction
virology: bacteriophages, interaction with host cell
microbial metabolism: aerobic and anaerobic respiration, fermentation, chemolitotrophy
oxygenic and anoxygenic photosynthesis, metabolism of CO2 fixation
nitrogen fixation
Mycetes: classification, growth cycle, nutrition
Element cycles (C, N, P, S)
Symbiosis between microorganisms and between microorganism and eukaryotic hosts
Prerequisites for admission
Basic knowledge in general and cellular biology; organic and inorganic chemistry
Teaching methods
The course is based on 32 lesson (64 hours) where will be described the main topics of the general microbiology and practical laboratory activities where the students will learn knowledge about safety in the biological laboratory and the basic techniques for microbial count, identification and characterisation (16 hours)
Teaching Resources
Dehò G. e Galli E. Biologia dei microrganismi. Casa Editrice Ambrosiana
Slides showed during the lessons with bibliographic references to in-depth scientific articles will be available through the Ariel web portal
Assessment methods and Criteria
The final exam is written and based on the answer to 3 open questions on selected topics described during the lessons, finalised to evaluate the aquired knowledge on general microbiology. The use of a correct scientific language will be part of the exam evaluation
BIO/19 - MICROBIOLOGY - University credits: 9
Single bench laboratory practical: 16 hours
Lessons: 64 hours
Professor: Borin Sara
Shifts:
Professor: Borin Sara
Turno 1
Professor: Borin Sara
Turno 2
Professor: Borin Sara
Educational website(s)
Professor(s)
Reception:
everyday under appointment
office: via Mangiagalli 25, 3rd floor, Environmental Microbiology Section
Reception:
Thursdays 15.30-16.30
Via Celoria 26, Scientific buildings, 4th floor, Tower "B"
Reception:
Contact for an appointment
Online