65932 - Environmental Microbiology

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Good health and well-being Climate Action Oceans Life on land

Academic Year 2021/2022

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student will have the basic knowledge on the structure-function-biosynthesis of the typical components of the bacterial cell. He will be able to understand the relationship between microorganisms and the environment.


Course contents

The course includes theoretical lectures (5 credits) and a laboratory course (1 credit).

During the theoretical part the following topics will be covered:
Structure and functions of the prokaryotic cell
Microbial growth and influence of environmental factors
Microbial metabolism: catabolism and anabolism
Chemiorganotrophy, fermentation, aerobic and anaerobic respiration, chemolithotrophy, phototrophy (anoxygenic and oxygenic photosynthesis)
Principles of prokaryotic molecular biology
Methods for microbial ecology
Principles of bioremediation
Biogeochemical cycles
Microbial interactions: mechanisms of symbiosis

The laboratory exercises will focus on:
Isolation of microorganisms from natural samples
Microbial growth and measurement
Optical microscopy and stains


Suggested bibliography:

Brock. Biology of Microorganisms. Ed. Pearson.

Biologia dei Microrganismi a cura di Gianni Dehò ed Enrica Galli. Casa Editrice Ambrosiana.

Teaching methods

Lectures (in italian) and laboratory practise

Assessment methods

Oral examination (or written test)

Teaching tools

The teaching material will be available to the students in electronic format.

Office hours

See the website of Carola Eleonora Parolin