Course code BIO230

BIO230 General Microbiology II

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Showing course contents for the educational year 2021 - 2022 .

Course responsible: Morten Kjos
ECTS credits: 10
Faculty: Faculty of Chemistry, Biotechnology and Food Science
Teaching language: NO
(NO=norsk, EN=Engelsk)
Limits of class size:
Teaching exam periods:
This course starts in the spring parallel. This course has teaching/evaluation in the spring parallel.
Course frequency: Annually
First time: Study year 2006-2007
Course contents:

The following topics within general prokaryotic microbiology and virology are included in the course:

  • The structure and cell cycle of prokaryotic cells, focusing on different mechanisms involved in the bacterial cell cycle.
  • Microbial metabolism of prokaryotes with different nutritional types. There will be a focus on explaining how bacteria obtain energy from different catabolic processes, how this energy is used to build new cells and cell structures.
  • The great diversity of Bacteria and Archaea found in nature. First, the general principles used in bacterial classification and phylogeny are discussed. Secondly, the most important groups of bacteria are described by emphasising their most characteristic properties. Selected bacteria with specific importance within infection biology, industrial microbiology and environmental microbiology will be highlighted.
  • The structure, replication and host specificity of the most important groups of viruses. Both bacterial viruses (bacteriophages) and viruses specific for eukaryotic organisms are covered. Selected important viruses will be highlighted.

The course content will be relevant for further work on several on the UN Sustainable Development Goals, including goal 3 (Good health), 6 (Clean water), 14 (Life below water), 15 (Life on land).

Learning outcome:


By taking the course (BIO230, General Microbiology II) the student will have learned the following processes, principles and concepts:

  • The structure of bacterial and archaeal cells.
  • Mechanisms involved in the bacterial cell cycle (chromosome replication and segregation, cell wall synthesis, cell division) and which methods that are used to study these.
  • The different nutritional types of microorganisms and the principles behind the energy and carbon metabolism of Bacteria and Archaea.
  • Different catabolic and anabolic pathways in prokaryotes, including central metabolism and anaplerotic pathways, aerobic respiration, anaerobic respiration, fermentation and photosynthesis, CO2-fixation, cell wall synthesis, synthesis of lipids, amino acids and nucleic acids.
  • Understanding of how prokaryote cells regulated their metabolism and lifestyle.
  • The taxonomy and phylogeny of Archaea and Bacteria.  
  • Characteristic properties (structures, lifestyle, metabolism, habitat, pathogenicity, industrial applications, involvement in biogeochemical cycles) of some important bacterial species from different groups.
  • How Archaea differs from Bacteria, and characteristic properties of Archaea.
  • How bacteria can cause infections.
  • Prokaryotic and eukaryotic viruses and their large diversity with respect to structure, function and life cycle. Specific knowledge about some important viruses.
  • How viruses can cause disease in humans.


After completing the course, the student will be able to explain principles and processes related to bacterial cell structure and cell division, virology, microbial metabolism, regulation of metabolic processes, microbial taxonomy and phylogeny as well as diversity among bacteria and Archaea. The student should give examples of bacterial and archaeal species within different phylogenetic subgroups and their characteristic properties. The student should know the difference between the nutritional types of microorganisms and explain how they are able to survive and grow in different environments. The students should also be able to explain how viruses are build up and be able to describe in detail the life cycle and properties of some selected bacteriophages and viruses. The students should be able to describe and suggest experimental methods that can be used to study different topics within microbiology.


The course will give the knowledge within general microbiology, prokaryotic cell biology, microbial metabolism, microbial diversity and virology and thereby give the student a solid foundation for further studies in microbiology and related disciplines. The students should also be able to acquire knowledge from reading scientific papers.

Learning activities:
Lectures and colloquia .
Teaching support:
The teacher can be contacted via e-mail ( and Canvas.

Textbook: Prescotts  Microbiology. Willey, Sherwood and Woolverton (McGraw-Hill).

Other written material will be handed out or is available in Canvas.

Microbiology equivalent to BIO130.Molecular Biology equivalent to BIO210.Biochemistry equivalent to KJB200.

Recommended prerequisites:
Biochemistry equivalent to KJB201.
Mandatory activity:
Two compulsory assignments need to be approved before the final exam. 

Written exam (3.5 hours). 100%

Compulsory assignments need to be approved before the final exam.

Nominal workload:

The workload is divided as follows:

  • Lectures: 40 hours.
  • Colloquia: 12 hours.
  • Individual study: 198 hours.
Entrance requirements:
Special requirements in Science
Type of course:
Lectures: 4 hours per week. About 40 hours of lectures in total. Colloquia 2 hours per week for 6 weeks, in total 12 hours.
An external examiner approves and grades a minimum of 25 exam papers.
Examination details: Written exam: Letter grades