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Pathogenesis of Bacterial Infections

East Baltimore
3rd term
Molecular Microbiology and Immunology
4 credits
Academic Year:
2021 - 2022
Instruction Method:
Synchronous Online with Some Asynchronous Online
Class Times:
  • M W F,  10:30 - 11:50am
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructors:
Kimberly Davis

Presents the mechanisms employed by bacteria to establish and maintain infection in the human host and evolution of host resistance mechanisms. Focuses on: bacterial colonization and adhesins, bacterial secretion systems, vector-borne diseases, the microbiome in health and disease, antibiotic resistance, innate immunity, bacterial toxins, and adaptive immunity/bacterial vaccines. Covers a different topic in bacterial pathogenesis research each week. The first class each week is a lecture introducing the topic, the second class each week introduces the topic from a clinical perspective by describing clinical presentations and case studies, and the third class each week discusses primary literature and methods typically used to study the topic. This includes any methods that are specific to a given topic.

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:

  • 6% Written Assignment(s)
  • 44% Midterm
  • 50% Final Exam

Instructor Consent:

No consent required

Special Comments:

Required for MMI students.