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General Microbiology

Curriculum Curriculum unico
Learnings UNICO
Academic Year 2018/2019
Scientific Disciplinary Sector AGR/16
Year Third year
Time unit First semester
Class hours 60
Educational activity Formative educational activities

Single group

The course of General microbiology aims to give, also by training activities in laboratory, specific basic knowledge on microorganism world concerning cellular organization, metabolic and genetics. Moreover, the students will learn some practical aspects of the general microbiology, among which the microorganism recognition by microscopic observation, Gram staining, correct manipulation, growth media preparation. Throughout the training in the laboratory, adequate emphasis on the strategies to use in order to operate under optimal safety conditions will be given.
-Knowledge and ability to understand: acquisition of theoretic and operative competences.
-Ability to apply knowledge and understanding: acquisition of specific applicative competences.
-Autonomy of judgment: evaluation and interpretation of microbiological experimental data; ability to operate in safe way in the laboratory.
-Communication skills: oral, written, and informatic communications; elaboration and presentation of experimental data; ability to work in groups; communication and dissemination of the information in the scientific sectors involved in the course.
-Learning skills: ability to develop and deepen other competences with respect to: consultation of bibliographic materials, consultation of database and other piece of information on the web, ability to acquire knowledge on learn how to program and carry out specific research projects on typical themes of the scientific sectors involved in the course.
Oral examination in Italian or English language.
Introductory lesson: presentation of the program contents, the suggested book, and the adopted evaluation modalities. The cells, its origin and evolution: generalities and life origin; cellular architecture; the life tree; re-calls on the differences between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. Microscopic techniques: generalities, introduction on the microscopy history; theory on the microscopic techniques; main optical microscopes; main techniques of samples preparation for their microscopic observation. Morphology and cytology of microorganisms: generalities, size and morphology of bacterial cells; cell structure: citoplasmatic membrane, cell wall and cell division, periplasmic membrane of the Gram-negative bacteria, S layer, capsule and mucous layer, appendices associated to cell wall; bacterial cell movement; cytoplasm; cellular organization in fungi domain. Nutrition and isolation of microorganisms as pure culture: generalities; nutritional groups; growth media; microorganism isolation in pure culture. Microbial growth and microorganism conservation: generalities on microbial growth curve; description and rapidity of the microbial growth; measurement of the microbial growth: direct and indirect methods; environmental requirements for the microbial growth; bacterial endospore: generalities, sporulation and germination; sporification phases; dormancy, germination and resistance of the bacterial endospore; sporification factors; environmental, sanitary, and technological implications of the spore production; applicative aspects of the sporification; secondary metabolism associated to sporulation; conservation of the microbial cultures. Microorganism control: physical, chemical, and pharmacological agents. Genetics of bacteria: genetic horizontal transfers. Virology: bacteriophages; transduction. Microorganisms as geochemical agents: generalities; soil as microorganism environment; carbon, nitrogen, and sulphur cycles. Symbiotic associations among microorganisms: generalities; mutualism; proto-cooperation; commensalism; competition; antagonism; parasitism; predation. Conclusive lesson: check on the efficacy of the lessons and discussion on related themes; execution of a written test similar to that one that will be given at the exam day; presentation of the laboratory training program.
Laboratory training - Basic microbiological methodologies and techniques useful to guarantee asepsis and antisepsis throughout the work phases in the laboratory. Basic methodologies and techniques on optical microscopy useful to guarantee the best using the available equipment. Slide technique preparation for observing pure culture of bacteria and yeasts by 10x, 40x, and 100x objectives; recognition of the structural differences between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells by composite and contrast phase microscopes. Preparation of bacterial cultures for microscopic observation of their ability to move by Kock slide; recognition of the strains able to move. Gram staining; microscopic observation using the 100-x objective of the obtained slides; recognition of the Gram+ and Gram- bacteria; identification of the possible flaws of each slide. Sterilization of growth media by autoclave; preparation of Petri plates by pouring the sterilized media. Streaking technique on solid media by sterile loop to obtain microorganism in pure culture. Preparation of homogenates from solid food samples by Stomacher. Preparation of serial dilutions and their inoculation in Petri plates to evaluate total microbial count in a food sample. Coliform bacteria test of drinking water samples by filtration on cellulose acetate filters and inoculation on solid media. It will be given an English-language summary at the end of each lesson.
Books Wessner D.R., Dupont C., Charles T.C. - Microbiologia. Prima edizione. Casa Editrice Ambrosiana (MI), 2015.
Traditional teaching method Yes
Distance teaching method No
Mandatory attendance No
Written examination evaluation No
Oral examination evaluation Yes
Aptitude test evaluation No
Project evaluation No
Internship evaluation No
Evaluation in itinere No
Practice Test No

Further information

Description Document
Programma T-SFA - Microbiologia Generale (programma) Document
Programma T-STA - Fondamenti di Microbiologia Generale (programma) Document
Programma T-STAL - Microbiologia Generale (programma) Document
domande d'esame - Fondamenti di microbiologia generale per T-STA (test) Document
domande d'esame - Microbiologia generale per T-SFA e T-STAL (test) Document
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