This course presents the fundamental principles of the biology of microorganisms with emphasis on prokaryotes. It covers structure, metabolism, growth and its control, genomics, and ecology of microorganisms. Upon completion of this course you should have a better understanding and the knowledge of the diversity of prokaryotes with regard to their structure, metabolism and physiology, and also of growth reqirements and evolution of prokaryotes and their role in the ecosystem.

The course will cover some fundamental concepts in molecular genetics of eukaryotes in details. Model organisms will be introduced at the beginning of the course followed by the discussion of genetics screens that are typically used to identify and characterize new genes in eukaryotes. Replication will be lectured with more attention being paid to the differences between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Lectures on transcription and translation will focus on cis- and trans-acting factors specific for eukaryotes, avoiding the basic biochemistry covered elsewhere. In addition, students will be encouraged to use theoretical knowledge in research by evaluating and presenting a research article as a group. 

The course will cover some of the databases available in biology such as NCBI and SwissProt. It will also demystify computational tools like BLAST, FASTA and other search algorithms currently employed in biological research. Finally, many tools which can be employed in projects will be explained in varying detail. Among these are multiple sequence alignment, building of pylogenetic trees, predicting secondary information about genes and proteins. Prediction of sub cellular localization of proteins, gene structure prediction, and discovery of putative functional domains of proteins are among the information that may be predicted.

The course will only scratch on the surface of a large number of tools that are very helpful in daily biological research. For each of these tools the confidence that can be put into the result is discussed in detail.

This course examines the cell. Topics include:

Visualizing Cells,

Membrane Structure,

Membrane Transport of Small Molecules and the Electrical Properties of Membranes,

Intracellular Compartments and Protein Sorting,

Intracellular Membrane Traffic,

The Cytoskeleton,

Cell Junctions and the Extracellular Matrix,


Content  : This course will cover the complex biological molecules and cellular structures and make freshmen students familiar with the underlying concepts of biological processes such as metabolism, inheritance, and cell communication at both molecular and cellular levels.


Objectives:1.To ensure that students understand the theory and basic principles of biological research and scientific techniques; 2.To enable students to learn the characteristics of important elements in the world of biology and of molecules consisting of a combination of these elements; 3.To ensure that students comprehend the characteristics of the organisms and the structural elements; 4.To ensure that students understand and learn basic knowledge related with the features of organisms, structures and functions; 5.To ensure that students understand and learn the biological events that occur in organisms at the molecular level like DNA replication, protein synthesis, etc.

The course aims to teach basic concepts of Biology, Molecular Biology, and Genetics for the Food Engineering Students.