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BB40117: Microbial evolution - from the laboratory to nature

Follow this link for further information on academic years Academic Year: 2015/6
Further information on owning departmentsOwning Department/School: Department of Biology & Biochemistry
Further information on credits Credits: 6
Further information on unit levels Level: Masters UG & PG (FHEQ level 7)
Further information on teaching periods Period: Semester 2
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Summary: CW 10%, EX 50%, SM 40%
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Detail:
  • Seminar (SM 40%)
  • Handout (CW 10%)
  • Examination (EX 50%)
Further information on supplementary assessment Supplementary Assessment: Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Further information on requisites Requisites: Before taking this module you must take BB20040 (or equivalent units authorised by the Director of Studies).
Further information on descriptions Description: Aims:
To provide the students with an holistic understanding of the causes and consequences of microbial evolution, by consideration of both experimental and wild populations.

Learning Outcomes:
After taking this course the student should be able to:
* explain basic population genetics principles and phylogenetic methods with respect to bacteria;
* explain the major mechanisms of bacterial molecular evolution; in particular the significance of mobile genetic elements and horizontal gene transfer;
* explain the rationale and applications of microbial experimental evolution;
* describe the insights provided by microbial studies into the ecological and genetic causes of evolution;
* integrate methodology and data from epidemiological case studies with theory and experimental data.

Learning and studying T/F/A, Written communication T/F/A, Oral communication T/F/A, Information handling & retrieval T/F/A, Working independently T/F.

The main forces shaping bacterial populations, the different kinds of selection pressures, mutation and stochastic forces. The consequences of evolutionary forces over different time scales, from intra-species variation (micro-evolution), to the differences between unrelated species (macro-evolution), and the relevance to the management and epidemiological surveillance of important human pathogens. The relationships between ecology, evolution and epidemiology. Design and analysis of laboratory selection experiments. Theory and data explaining the evolution and maintenance of diversity, the evolution of evolvability, the evolution of altruism, the evolution of virulence and host-parasite coevolution.
Further information on programme availabilityProgramme availability:

BB40117 is Optional on the following programmes:

Department of Biology & Biochemistry Programmes in Natural Sciences
  • UXXX-AFM01 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences (Year 4)
  • UXXX-AKM02 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences with Professional Placement (Year 5)
  • UXXX-AAM02 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences with Study year abroad (Year 5)
Department of Mathematical Sciences
* This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2015/16 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2016/17 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2015/16.
* Programmes and units are subject to change at any time, in accordance with normal University procedures.
* Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.