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Pathogenesis of Bacterial Infections

East Baltimore
3rd term
Molecular Microbiology and Immunology
4 credits
Academic Year:
2019 - 2020
Class Times:
  • M W F,  10:30 - 11:50am
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor s:
Ying Zhang

Presents the mechanism employed by bacteria to establish and maintain infection in the human host and evolution of host resistance mechanisms. Covers host-pathogen relationship, bacterial structure and metabolism, pathogenic mechanisms of bacteria, systemic and mucosal immunity, major Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacterial pathogens, antibiotic resistance, bacterial vaccines, and role of microbiome in health and disease. Discussions generally cover Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria with specific lectures on pathogens of particular interest, such as mycobacteria, H. pylori, Borrelia, rickettsia, and bacteria associated with sexually transmitted diseases. Complemented by two clinical plate rounds and a clinical lab tour that aims to give a flavor of clinical relevance of the covered topics.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Analyze unique features of bacterial cells compared with eukaryotic cells, and the structure/function and metabolism of the bacterial cell needed for understanding the molecular basis of bacterial pathogenesis
  2. Assess how bacteria mediate genetic exchanges and the genetic strategies used to dissect bacterial virulence factors, and molecular Koch postulates for verifying the role of a given gene in bacterial pathogenesis
  3. Define the pathogenic mechanisms bacteria use to cause disease
  4. Define how antibiotics work and how bacteria develop two types of resistances to antibiotics and the role of persisters in relapse of persistent bacterial infections
  5. Define the importance of microbiome in human health and diseases
  6. Define host immune mechanisms in controlling bacterial infections and how vaccine works
  7. Assess methods of diagnosis and treatment of major select bacterial pathogens
Methods of Assessment:

This course is evaluated as follows:

  • 20% Homework
  • 40% Midterm
  • 40% Final Exam

Instructor Consent:

No consent required

Special Comments:

Required for MMI students.