Applied/Industrial Microbiology

MCB 235/336

  Spring, 2008
Dr. David R. Benson


SECTION I. Industrial Microorganisms

The diversity of "useful" microorganisms including obligate aerobes, facultative anaerobes, anaerobes, aerotolerant anaerobes and archaea. Metabolic pathways will be presented in detail, especially those involved in industrially important processes.


SECTION II. Microbial Products and Processes.

Selection, growth and manipulation of microorganisms. Training microorganisms through mutagenesis and selection, and through environmental control. Using microorganisms for producing feedstock chemicals, alcohol fermentations, primary and secondary metabolites including antibiotics, enzymes, and exotica. Bioconversions of steroids, vitamins, etc.


SECTION III. Current Microbial Biotechnology.

Bioenergetics of degradation of organic material and pollutants in aerobic and anaerobic environments, metal transformations, mining microbiology, biomass conversions. Important agricultural processes and symbioses, and microbial insecticides.


Readings: For background information you should have access to a standard microbiology text: Brock - Biology of Microorganisms by Madigan, Martinko, and Parker (Prentice Hall), or Prescott, Microbiology  (Chapman & Hall). Readings are posted on the Web:  Login using the user/password combination of mcb235/pasteur.

Grading: There will be three exams - February 20, April 2, and a cumulative final exam that will also include the final third of the course (TBA). Quizzes will be given to encourage you to stay current with the material. Final grades will be calculated as follows: Three exams - 80%, Quizzes - 20%

Memberships: If you wish, and this is optional, you may become a member of the American Society for Microbiology and/or the Society for Industrial Microbiology . Student memberships are relatively inexpensive ($17.00 for the ASM, $35.00 for SIM). With a membership, you receive journals with job listings, current biotechnology news, etc.

TA: Juliana Matronunzio, 486-1885 ,