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BIOL127 Foundations of Biology

Unit rationale, description and aim

Microbiology is the study of microorganisms - bacteria, protozoal parasites, viruses and fungi. While many microbes may be potentially pathogenic, others play vital roles in agriculture and the environment as recyclers of organic molecules and some have been used as important tools both scientifically and industrially. In this unit, students will gain an understanding of general microbiology and microbiological processes. This unit examines an introduction to microbial concepts and processes needed to understand microbial isolation, growth, diversity, reproduction, physiology, metabolism, classification and identification. This includes distribution of microorganisms in nature, their relationship to each other and to other living things as well as their beneficial and detrimental effects. The unit aims to introduce students to the sub-discipline of microbiology and will encompass the relationship between microbes and their environment, the surge of infectious diseases, bioterrorism, in pharmaceutical science and degradation of pollutants.

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