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How do microorganisms provide essential models that give us fundamental knowledge about life processes?

Topic

Impact of Microorganisms

Framing Question

How do microorganisms provide essential models that give us fundamental knowledge about life processes?

Learning Objectives

  • Describe a key study using microbes as model organisms that gave rise to insights about biology that are applicable across kingdoms and domains (e.g., Griffith’s transformation experiment; Avery, MacLeod, and McCarty’s transformation principle experiment; Hershey-Chase phage experiment; Meselson and Stahl’s semi-conservative replication; Jacob and Monod’s lac operon, etc.).
  • Describe the features of Escherichia coli that have made it a model organism for studying many different life processes.
  • Explain how the rapid growth of microorganisms facilitates evolutionary studies.
  • Use genomic tools to trace a given human gene back to a bacterial ancestor.
  • Describe synthetic biology efforts in bacteria to define the minimal genome necessary for life.

Courses

Courses