Medical, veterinary and forensic biotechnological sciences
Study-unit Code
In all curricula
Roberta Spaccapelo
  • Roberta Spaccapelo
  • Yoke Wei Alicia Wong (Codocenza)
  • 45 ore - Roberta Spaccapelo
  • 7 ore (Codocenza) - Yoke Wei Alicia Wong
Course Regulation
Coorte 2023
Learning activities
Discipline biotecnologiche comuni
Academic discipline
Type of study-unit
Obbligatorio (Required)
Type of learning activities
Attività formativa monodisciplinare
Language of instruction
The molecular diagnostics program in microbiology deals with a limited number of microorganisms and addresses their general characteristics, classical and molecular diagnostic methodologies and new therapeutic approaches. Particular attention is paid to infections for which a vaccine has been developed or experimental activities aimed at achieving this goal are underway. In addition, innovative molecular biology topics important in the diagnostics of microorganisms will be covered. The course includes laboratory activities that will be carried out in university research centers and in the microbiology laboratory of the Perugia hospital.
Reference texts
Students will be provided with the teaching material used during the lessons and scientific articles for further study of some topics.
Educational objectives
At the end of the course, students will have acquired cutting-edge knowledge in the biotechnological field applied to microbiological diagnostics. Furthermore, they will be able to analyze and compare some pathologies and developments in the biotechnological field for the creation of vaccines.
In order to understand most of the diagnostic-molecular techniques for the identification of human pathogenic microorganisms described in the course, the student must have notions concerning the general microbiology of bacteria, fungi, protozoa and viruses - notions that the student should have acquired during the three-year degree course. Furthermore, the student must possess basic notions of molecular biology necessary for the understanding of the new technologies used in clinical diagnostics.
Teaching methods
The course is divided into: 1) frontal lessons which will focus on the issues of human infectious diseases; 2) laboratory activities to be carried out in a university research laboratory and in the microbiology laboratory of the Perugia hospital.
Furthermore, students will have to present and comment on an article, chosen by the teacher, concerning the topics of the course.
Other information
Attendance is not compulsory, but strongly recommended both for the frontal lessons and for laboratory activities.
The lessons will be held at the Educational Center, Dept. of Medicine and Surgery.
The laboratory activities will be carried out:
at the Department of Medicine and Surgery, Section of Genomics and Genetics, P.za Lucio Severi 1, Building D, third floor;
at the Microbiology laboratory of the Santa Maria della Misericordia Hospital, Sant'Andrea delle Fratte, Perugia.
Learning verification modality
The exam includes an oral test which consists of a discussion of the topics covered during the course and studied in depth by the students with scientific articles in English recommended by the teacher. The exam is aimed at ascertaining the level of knowledge and understanding achieved by the student on the theoretical and methodological contents indicated in the programme.
Furthermore, the student must be able to describe the standard and innovative methodologies used in the microbiology diagnostic laboratory based on the notions learned during the practical laboratory activities. The oral test will also assess the student's presentation, learning and data processing skills.

Students with disabilities and/or DSA are invited to visit the page dedicated to the tools and measures envisaged and to agree in advance what is necessary with the teacher (https://www.unipg.it/disabilita-e -dsa).
Extended program
The main objective of the course is to provide students with the basis for understanding the main human infectious diseases and their therapeutic applications. The main topics covered during the course will be:
a) Role of biotechnology in vaccine development: History of vaccines; Smallpox vaccine; Vaccines: typology and characteristics; Vaccine preparation techniques; Immune response to vaccinations.
b) Main human diseases caused by pathogenic microorganisms:
- Tuberculosis: general characteristics, diagnosis and treatment
- Malaria: general characteristics, diagnosis and treatment and innovative approaches for the realization of a vaccine
- Meningitis: general characteristics, diagnosis and treatment
- Sexually transmitted diseases: general characteristics, diagnosis and treatment
- Papillomavirus: overview, diagnosis and treatment

c) Clinical microbiology laboratory:
Role of the microbiological laboratory; Classical and molecular methods for the identification of bacteria, mycobacteria and protozoa and viruses; Antibiotic susceptibility testing; Diagnosis of tuberculosis and meningitis.

d) Molecular biology techniques applied to microbiological diagnosis:
- PCR and qPCR: overview and role in the microbiological laboratory;
- SNPs: general information, role in the diagnostic field and methods for their identification;
- Next-generation sequencing: overview and role in the microbiological laboratory.
- Metagenomics
Obiettivi Agenda 2030 per lo sviluppo sostenibile
Health and wellness
Condividi su