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BB50252: Infectious diseases

[Page last updated: 02 August 2022]

Academic Year: 2022/23
Owning Department/School: Department of Biology & Biochemistry
Credits: 15 [equivalent to 30 CATS credits]
Notional Study Hours: 300
Level: Masters UG & PG (FHEQ level 7)
Academic Year
Assessment Summary: CW 50%, EX 50%
Assessment Detail:
  • Research Presentation (CW 50%)
  • Synoptic Written Examination (EX 50%)
Supplementary Assessment:
Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Learning Outcomes: By the end of this unit you will be able to:
* Apply understanding to develop a critical awareness of the pathogenesis of disease caused by a number of key pathogens, the mechanisms of infection and host-defense and the emergence of virulence;
* Apply conceptual understanding to analyse how and why vaccines are useful for the prevention of disease, how they are developed and the limitations in their development;
* Critique a range of interventions for reduction of infectious disease, drawing on the current literature in the field;
* Communicate your critical evaluation and analyses through a formal presentation.

Aims: The unit aims to provide a critical review of the molecular and clinical aspects of microbial pathogenicity (in humans), infectious disease transmission and development of interventions (such as vaccines) that can be utilised to reduce disease.

Content: Content particularly focuses on pathogenesis of bacterial infections; transmission of infection and strategies to reduce transmission; vaccine immunology; uses and limitations of vaccines to prevent communicable diseases. Specific case studies will highlight where the interactions that occur between a named pathogen and its host. Using examples such as Staphylococcus aureus (the MRSA superbug), it outlines disease management and how this is likely to influence the future evolution of the pathogen.

Programme availability:

BB50252 is Optional (DEU) on the following programmes:

Department of Biology & Biochemistry
  • RSBB-AFM51 : Integrated PhD Molecular Biosciences (Microbiology)
  • TSBB-AFM51 : MSc Molecular Biosciences (Microbiology)


  • This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2022/23 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2023/24 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2022/23.
  • Programmes and units are subject to change 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.
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