|SCIENTIFIC DISCIPLINARY SECTOR
Marine waters cover 70% of the earth's surface and are populated by thousands of micro-organisms that play a fundamental role for life on our planet. Marine microbiology deals with the study of microorganisms (archea, bacteria, viruses and eukaryotic microorganisms) and their activities in marine ecosystems. It includes the study of microbial biodiversity, interactions between microorganisms and other living organisms and their role in coastal and oceanic marine ecosystems.
AIMS AND CONTENT
The aim is to provide basic knowledge on the biology and ecology of marine microorganisms (with particular reference to bacteria, viruses and archaea), and on the composition, ecological role and biotechnological applications of marine microbial communities. The teaching will also provide basic knowledge on up to date microbiological techniques currently employed for the study of marine microorganisms and marine microbial communities.
AIMS AND LEARNING OUTCOMES
The attendance and participation in the planned training activities will allow the student to acquire general knowledge in the field of marine microbiology
Specifically, the student will be able to:
• Know the basic biology of marine microorganisms and their activities
• Understanding the ecological role of marine microorganisms and marine microbial communities
• Know the main techniques of modern use necessary for the characterization and study of marine microbes
To effectively address teaching contents basic knowledge on general microbiology (eg structure of the prokaryotic cell and microbial metabolism) and biochemistry and molecular biology (structure and function of the main organic biomolecules, basic knowledge of the mechanisms of DNA replication and protein synthesis) are strongly recommended
The course consists exclusively of lectures. Attendance at lessons is strongly recommended.
Lectures in the classroom are delivered through multimedia presentations.
The main groups of marine microorganisms: taxonomic classification, biological characteristics, phototrophic bacteria, chemoautotrophic bacteria, extremophiles marine prokaryotes, marine viruses. Role of microorganisms in the marine environment: microbial loop, viral loop, biological pump. Marine pathogenic microorganisms: infections transmitted to humans and animals and main biological characteristics of some of the pathogens involved (e.g. Vibrio spp.). Physiological status and survival strategies of bacteria in the marine environment: state of "starvation", state VBNC, microbial biofilms. Culture-based (traditional assays and in situ cultivation) and non culture- based (PCR, epifluorescence microscopy, fluorescent in situ-FISH hybridization, antigen antibody reactions) assays for the detection and study of bacteria and viruses in marine samples. Analysis of microbial diversity in the marine environment: molecular fingerprinting techniques (ARDRA, RLFP, TRLFP, DDGE, TTGE), metagenomic techniques (amplicon-based metagenomic, shotgun metagenomic, target-based metagenomic). Climate change and marine microrganisms. Faecal pollution and microbiological control of marine waters. Biotechnological use of marine microorganisms and their products.
All slides used during lessons and other teaching materials will be available on AulaWeb at the end of each lesson cycle. The books listed below are suggested as supporting texts, but students can still use other university level texts.
Micheal T Madigan et al 2016. Brock, Biologia dei microrganismi, Microbiologia generale, ambientale e industriale. Pearson Editore (Milano), ISBN-10: 889190094X, 848 pp.
D. R. Wessner, C. Dupont, T. C. Charles 2015. Microbiologia. Casa Editrice Ambrosiana (Milan). ISBN: 8808181006
TEACHERS AND EXAM BOARD
LUIGI VEZZULLI (President)
For lessons start and timetable go to the link: https://easyacademy.unige.it/portalestudenti/
Please check the module Aulaweb page for timetable updates dependent on the sanitary and epidemic situation.
The exam is oral and consists of the answer to questions asked by the teacher on topics covered during the course. Three calls will be available in the winter session (January-February) and 3 calls in the summer session (June, July, September).
Detailed information on how to prepare for the exam and the degree of detail required for each covered topic will be provided during the lessons. The oral examination will focus on the topics covered in class and will have the purpose to evaluate not only if the student has reached an adequate level of knowledge, but also if he has acquired the ability to recall the theoretical notions by applying them to simple concrete contexts. The ability to expose the arguments clearly and with correct terminology will also be evaluated.
Regular attendance at lessons is strongly recommended.