This module provides an introduction to both the diversity of pathogenic microbes that infect human and plants, and the features of such organisms that enable them to cause disease and resist host defense mechanisms. The major focus is on these interactions at the molecular level. The module takes a thematic approach, addressing the topic from the perspectives of both the pathogen and the microbiologist. Exemplar groups of pathogens are covered in more detail by means of case studies.
A. Describe the concepts and principles of the use of standard laboratory tests to identify bacterial and fungal pathogens.
B. Define the concepts and principles of the main routes of microbial transmission.
C. Explain the concepts and principles of the major components of host defense relevant to disease processes in humans and plants.
D. Grasp the concepts and principles of virulence factors and how they enable pathogens to evade the host’s immune system.
E. Summarize the concepts and principles of the role, development and current limitations of chemotherapy and immunization.
F. Apply scientific writing skills including proper citing.
G. Apply, evaluate and interpret this knowledge to solve problems in Biology.
Course content will be delivered primarily via standard lectures, that will be accompanied by suitable lecture handouts (also available on the VLE). Students will also receive links to relevant literature to support the lectures. Tutorials will be used to discuss one published article in detail. To accomplish learning outcome F, the students will be required to write a small paper including proper citing based on a review of scientific literature.