An introduction to the cellular basis of life. Spanning eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells; cellular structure and function; core biochemical components; mechanisms for generating genetic diversity; the flow of information within cells and between generations; gene expression; and a survey of the landscape of modern genomics, this course provides the conceptual foundation for subsequent courses on molecules, cells and organisms.
An introductory course in biology suitable for students with little previous experience in the subject. Topics include: the diversity of life; cells as the basic unit of life; form and function of cells, microbes, animals and plants; DNA and molecular genetics; classical genetics; evolution and ecology.
162.211 Biology and Genetics of Microorganisms15 credits
Structure and metabolism of bacteria and their relation to the environment. Bacterial genetics. Eukaryote microbes - structure, physiology and genetics. Life cycle of viruses. Practical training in the manipulation of micro-organisms.
Microbiology as an integrated study of the diversity of micro-organisms and microbial environments. The range of microbial cell structures and metabolism is described in relation to environmental niches, and the molecular mechanisms for responding to environmental change. Actions and interactions of micro-organisms in soil and water.
Structure and metabolism of bacteria with particular reference to food and environmental microbiology. Bacterial genetics. Eukaryote microbes - structure, physiology and genetics. Life cycle of viruses. The immune response. Practical training in the manipulation of micro-organisms.
This course introduces students to the basic principles of microbiology, taking an integrative approach that bridges the fields of molecular biology, environmental science, and medicine. Students will learn what microorganisms are (identification, phylogeny, genome structure, and regulation), how they make a living (their diverse roles in ecosystems: from free-living to symbiotic to pathogenic), and the contributions that microorganisms have made to problems in medicine, agriculture, and the environment. Content will cover all major groups of microorganisms, including bacteria, archaea, viruses, and eukaryotes (protists and fungi). Laboratories will integrate these learning objectives as students isolate and characterize microorganisms and use real-world bioinformatics approaches to annotate genomes.
The course explores the cell types involved in the mammalian immune system. It allows students to learn about the principles of immunology including innate immunity, cell and antibody mediated immunity, the major histocompatibility complex, transplantation immunology, hypersensitivities, immunodeficiency and autoimmunity. The course provides an introduction to vaccines, clinical immunology and immunological laboratory tests.
An introduction to the general principles of host-pathogen interaction for some major groups of bacteria and fungi pathogenic for humans. Detection of pathogens in clinical specimens. Sterilisation, disinfection and control of microbial growth. Antimicrobial agents, resistance to antimicrobial agents and antimicrobial susceptibility testing.
Some major bacterial pathogens of humans in terms of the organisms, their habitats, modes of transmission, disease patterns and laboratory diagnosis. The structure, classification, propagation, assay and transmission of some of the major viruses of humans. Immunity to viruses and the laboratory diagnosis of viral infections.
The principles of immunology including innate immunity, cell and antibody mediated immunity, the major histocompatibility complex, the hypersensitivities, immunodeficiency and autoimmunity. An introduction to vaccines, clinical immunology and immunological laboratory tests.
162.304 Applied and Environmental Microbiology 15 credits
Actions and interactions of micro-organisms in soil, water, air, food, and the animal and human gut; consequences and applications of microbial colonisation processes.
The scales of biological organisation, including molecular, cellular, organismal, ecological and global levels are intricately linked to one another. This advanced and interdisciplinary course will allow students to learn about and explore the integrated nature of the biological sciences through lectures, laboratories and a research project. Each year a central theme will be chosen that affects all levels of biological organisation. Appropriate themes might include antibiotics, vaccination, mercury or carbon monoxide. The laboratory will focus on acquiring practical skills for investigating the theme and allow students to design and carry out a small practical research project.
Current topics in microbiology covering topics in pathogenicity, biofilms, host interactions and industrial applications.
162.760 Research Methods and Communication in the Biosciences30 credits
A directed course in research methodology and communication in biosciences. Assignments may include a research proposal, a literature review, scientific writing for a journal and a formal seminar presentation.
162.761 Research Methods and Written Communication in Biosciences 15 credits
A directed course in research methodology and written communication in the biosciences. Assignments may include a literature review and writing of a manuscript suitable for publication in a scientific journal.
162.762 Grant Writing and Oral Communication in Biosciences15 credits
A directed course in applying for funding and oral communication in biosciences. Assignments may include a research proposal and a formal seminar presentation.