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A New Course on a Hot Topic!
M460: Microbial Evolution
Spring 2011 – 3 credits – T & Th, 11:15 AM-12:30 PM
Professor Jeff Palmer
Prerequisite: M250 or Permission of the Instructor
Microbes Rule: Evolution, Diversity, & the History of Life on Earth
Learn about the exciting revolution underway in our
understanding of the evolution, diversity, and fundamental
importance of microbial life on Earth
Course will consist of integrated lectures, readings, and discussions
Topics to be covered:
Microbial diversity: the ubiquity, diversity, and importance of microbial life
The “Tree of Life”: progress, controversies, and challenges
Horizontal gene transfer: microbial genomes in flux
Sex in bacteria: recombination, bacterial “species”, and the pangenome
Symbiosis: from mitochondria to the human microbiome
Experimental evolution: using bacteria to study evolution in action
Evolution of viruses: from HIV to Mimivirus
Origin and evolution of antibiotic resistance
Evolution of pathogens and parasites
Origin of Life and the RNA World