Applied Microbiology


This course aims to integrate basic principles of general microbiology, microbial physiology and industrial microbiology, to provide the fundamentals of microbial biotechnology and to illustrate biotechnological processes with case studies.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Rita Gonçalves Sobral de Almeida


Weekly - 4

Total - 66

Teaching language



Strongly recommended a solid knowledge in Microbiology, Cell Biology and Molecular Biology.



“Industrial Microbiology: an Introduction”. 2001. Waites, M. J. et al. Blackwell Science.

“Biotecnologia: Fundamentos e aplicações”. 2003. Lima & Mota. Lidel.

"Brock Biology of Microorganisms”.  2010. 13th Edition. Madigan MT, Martinko JM Stahl D  Clark DP. Prentice-Hall International Ed.


“Prescott, Harley & Klein’s Microbiology”. 2008. 7th ed., J.M. Willey et al., McGraw-Hill.


“Os micróbios e o Homem”. 2002. J.R. Postgate. Editora Replicação.


Teaching method

Available soon

Evaluation method

The continuous assessment of Module 1 consists of 1 test on the contents of theoretical classes (TB1) and a written paper in the form of a scientific article on the contents of the practical classes of block 1 (TP1). The tests have no minimum grade.

The continuous assessment of Module 2 consists in 1 test on the contents of theoretical and practical classes (TB1).For the calculation of the final grade the following formula is used:

TB1 * 1.4 / 3 + TP1 * 0.6 / 3 + TB2 * 1/3 

The final exam that brings together the previous components, except the evaluation of the written work that will continue to contribute to the final grade with the same weight.

The values of all the assessment elements will be provided on a scale of 0 to 20 values.

Approval: To get approved the student must have a final grade of 9.5 or higher.

It is forbidden to use computers, smartphones and calculators, graphic or not, in the tests of Applied Microbiology.

Attendance: Obtaining attendance implies attending the practical classes (1 non-justified absence is allowed).

Subject matter

Lectures: Microbial diversity, flexibility and versatility. Different stages in a biotechnologial process using microorganisms. Kinetics and energetics of microbial growth. Modelling, and Occam''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''s Razor. The growth curve and significance of different phases. Growth rates, yields and productivity.  Continuous culture: the chemostat.  Optimization of culture conditions. Culture and production methods. Design of culture media. Microbial groups of industrial importance and interest. Strain selection. Strain improvement (mutagenesis, genetic engineering, directed evolution). Media and substrates for large-scale production. Production of primary and secondary metabolites. Examples. Antibiotics: mechanisms of action and microbial production. Exploration of additional areas of applied microbiology; environment, food production, bioactive compunds, biofuels.

Practicals: Topics on data handling, and graphical representation; Modelling of physiological systemsIsolation of Actinomycetes from the soil, Screening for antibiotic producers.