Site Navigation

BIOM8012 - Microbial Interactions

Title:Microbial Interactions
Long Title:Microbial Interactions
Module Code:BIOM8012
Duration:1 Semester
Credits: 5
NFQ Level:Advanced
Field of Study: Microbiology
Valid From: Semester 1 - 2019/20 ( September 2019 )
Module Delivered in 1 programme(s)
Module Coordinator: Brigid Lucey
Module Author: Caitriona Guinane
Module Description: This module investigates the complexities of microbial interactions in the agri food sector with relevance to crop and animal health and disease. The potential benefits of microorganisms in agri ecosystems will be studied in addition to the spread and evolution of agricultural pathogens which challenge productivity and food safety. Current control strategies and emerging tools for agricultural surveillance and disease prevention will also be critically evaluated.
Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this module the learner will be able to:
LO1 Evaluate the beneficial interactions between microbes and plants, microbes and animal hosts and within microbial communities .
LO2 Describe the pathogenic microorganisms relevant to agri ecosystems.
LO3 Assess the current and emerging antimicrobial control strategies in the agri-food sector.
LO4 Understand the repertoire of molecular (DNA-based) and non-molecular techniques that can be used to study microbes in their environment.
LO5 Critically evaluate the current literature relating to the influence of microbes in the agri food sector.
Pre-requisite learning
Module Recommendations
This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is strongly recommended before enrolment in this module. You may enrol in this module if you have not acquired the recommended learning but you will have considerable difficulty in passing (i.e. achieving the learning outcomes of) the module. While the prior learning is expressed as named CIT module(s) it also allows for learning (in another module or modules) which is equivalent to the learning specified in the named module(s).
Incompatible Modules
These are modules which have learning outcomes that are too similar to the learning outcomes of this module. You may not earn additional credit for the same learning and therefore you may not enrol in this module if you have successfully completed any modules in the incompatible list.
No incompatible modules listed
Co-requisite Modules
No Co-requisite modules listed

This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is mandatory before enrolment in this module is allowed. You may not enrol on this module if you have not acquired the learning specified in this section.

No requirements listed

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Beneficial interactions
Plant-microbe interactions. Use of microbes in agriculture as biofertilizers, phytostimulators, bioherbicides, biopesticides. Animal host-microbe interactions. Microbial fermentation in the rumen to increase livestock production.
Microbial threats to the agri-food sector
Animal pathogens and infectious disease, mastitis in large and small ruminants, viral infections and parasitic diseases. Concept of One Health. Microbial biofilms. Zoonotic diseases. Significance of microbes in crops. Virus detection and elimination.
Antimicrobial control strategies
Antibiotic usage in animals, antibiotic resistance development. Reducing high SCC in herds. Immunity, vaccination, biosecurity and biocontainment practices.
Community profiling
Molecular and Non-molecular techniques for studying microbes in agri ecosystems. Fluorescence and luminescence based marker systems.
Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work40.00%
End of Module Formal Examination60.00%
Course Work
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Performance Evaluation Group presentations on the relevent research literature relating to microbial interactions in agri ecosystems 1,2,3,4,5 40.0 Sem End
End of Module Formal Examination
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Formal Exam written exam 1,2,3,4,5 60.0 End-of-Semester
Reassessment Requirement
Repeat examination
Reassessment of this module will consist of a repeat examination. It is possible that there will also be a requirement to be reassessed in a coursework element.

The institute reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload

Workload: Full Time
Workload Type Workload Description Hours Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload
Lecture Class based instruction 3.0 Every Week 3.00
Independent & Directed Learning (Non-contact) Independent study 4.0 Every Week 4.00
Total Hours 7.00
Total Weekly Learner Workload 7.00
Total Weekly Contact Hours 3.00
This module has no Part Time workload.

Module Resources

Recommended Book Resources
  • Jayanta Kumar 2017, Microbial Biotechnology Volume 1. Applications in Agriculture and Environment, 1 Ed., Springer [ISBN: 978-981-10-68]
Supplementary Book Resources
  • Frank M. Aarestrup 2006, Antimicrobial Resistance in Bacteria of Animal Origin, 1st Ed., ASM Science [ISBN: 978155581753]
  • George Agrios 2005, Plant pathology, 5th Ed., academic press USA [ISBN: 97800804737]
Recommended Article/Paper Resources
  • Tyrrell C, Burgess CM, Brennan FP, Walsh F. 2019, Antibiotic resistance in grass and soil, Biochem Soc Trans., 28;47(1) pg 477-486
  • Florez-Cuadrado D, Moreno MA, Ugarte-Ruíz M, Domínguez L. 2018, Antimicrobial Resistance in the Food Chain in the European Union., Adv Food Nutr Res., 86:115-136.
Other Resources
  • website: https://www.teagasc.ie

Module Delivered in

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
CR_SAGBI_8 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Agri-Biosciences 8 Mandatory

Cork Institute of Technology
Rossa Avenue, Bishopstown, Cork

Tel: 021-4326100     Fax: 021-4545343
Email: help@cit.edu.ie