Molecular Microbiology

University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Molecular Microbiology

  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study

    Microbiology, Molecular Biology

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    MICR 221 or GENE 221

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    The bacterial nucleoid and its influence on gene expression. Molecular mechanisms by which bacteria adapt to environmental change. Regulation of gene expression by proteins and small RNAs. Pathogen evolution.
    Molecular Microbiology is highly relevant to all aspects of modern microbiology. MICR 335 will provide a fundamental knowledge of the mechanisms that bacteria use to sense their environment and adapt their gene expression to optimize their growth and survival. This course, emphasizes general principles and illustrates their application with topical examples. Lectures are complemented by a laboratory course which will help you develop skills in scientific record-keeping and reporting. A research project will provide hands-on experience with many of the skills and techniques that are used in a microbial genetics laboratory.

    Course Structure
    The lecture course is divided into a number of modules, some of which change from year to year, reflecting topical issues in microbiology.

    Modules in 2015 were:
    -General overview of genetic regulatory mechanisms (9 lectures)
    -Global regulation of respiration and molecular responses to oxidative stress (6 lectures)
    -Stationary phase adaptation and small non-coding RNAs (4 lectures)
    -Riboswitches and bacterial RNA maturation (4 lectures)
    -Special Topic: Regulation of bacterial motility by c-di-GMP (2 lectures)

    The lecture course is complemented by a laboratory course that aims to help students develop research skills relevant to molecular microbiology.

    -Laboratory report 25% (due at the end of week 5 of the semester, one week after the final lab)
    -Internet-based gene assignment 5% (given out in week 3 of the semester; due Monday before Easter break)
    -Final exam 70%

    Learning Outcomes
    Demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of central concepts and current developments in molecular microbiology

    Text books are not required for this course.
    Course readings are reviews and original papers from the literature. PDFs of these will be placed on Blackboard.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.