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Fiche de cours



Faculté de gestion: Ecole de biologie (FBM-BIO)

Responsable(s): Stefan Kunz

Période de validité: 2013 -> 2013

Pas d'horaire défini.


Semestre d'automne
18 heures par semestre

Langue(s) d'enseignement: anglais
Public: Non
Crédits: 2.00, 3.00


This course will provide an overview over medical microbiology at an advanced level. Introductory parts will cover the basic concepts of bacterial, viral, and fungal infections in humans. Selected pathogens will be used to highlight the principles underlying human infectious diseases from the standpoint of the pathogen and the host defense.


Outline course Medical Microbiology

Part I Medical Bacteriology (Gilbert Greub, 6 hours total)

This part of the course will first present the concepts of bacterial colonization, of infection and of barriers against invading micro-organisms. The importance of clinical bacteriology for the etiological diagnosis of infectious diseases will be presented, as well as the main diagnosis approaches used. Then, the most important virulence factors implicated in bacterial pathogenesis and in the transmission of pathogenic agents will be presented. These fundamental principles will be illustrated using relevant human pathogens as examples. First, we will present the pathogenesis of some pyogenic bacteria (Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus spp., Streptococcus spp.), highlighting the importance of bacterial toxins and of bacteriophages. Then, we will present some specific aspects of the mode of transmission and pathogenesis of infections due to intracellular bacteria, using as examples the atypical pneumonia and the zoonotic infections. Finally, we will illustrate using mycobacteria some key principles in bacterial pathogenesis including the importance of pathogens evolution and of immune defense.

Colonisation, infection and barriers against invading pathogens (1hour)

Colonisation, physiological flora
Infection and inflammation
Chemical, mechanical, physical and biological barriers

Diagnostic bacteriology (1hour)

Gram and direct examination
Cultures approaches
Bacterial identification
Molecular diagnosis/serology

Pyogenic bacterial infections and toxins (1hour)

Escherichia coli: commensal and pathogen: (ETEC/EPEC/EIEC)
Staphylococcus aureus: virulence factors
Streptococcus, superantigens and bacteriophages

Pneumonia (1hour)

Etiological diagnosis of pneumonia
Pneumocoques and other encapsulated pyogenic bacteria
Legionella pneumophila, water and amoebae
Other agents of atypical pneumonia (Chlamydia spp., Coxiella burnetii)

Zoonotic infections (1hour)

Ticks/fleas/lice: role in the transmission
Rickettsia: pathogenesis and reductive evolution
Bartonella: red blood cells and endothelial cells

Mycobacteria (1hour)

Importance of immune defense mechanisms
Pathogenomic with an evolutionary perspective

Part II Medical Virology
This part of the course will cover fundamental aspects of medical virology and viral diseases in humans. A short introduction will provide a survey of the landscape and outline basic principles of human viral infection and viral pathogenesis. These fundamental principles will then be illustrated using relevant human pathogens as examples. The most important families of human pathogenic viruses will be presented in a general way. From each family, we will select specific viruses that will serve as examples to illustrate fundamental aspects of virus-host interaction and viral pathogenesis in a more detailed manner. A final block will cover virus infections in the central nervous system (CNS) and re-visit the basic principles outlined before to give a synthesis of the highly complex virus-host interaction underlying viral CNS disorders.

Introduction to medical virology (1 hour) Stefan Kunz

Basic principles of human viral infection
Basic principles of innate and adaptive anti-viral defense

Virus infection of the central nervous system (1 hour) Stefan Kunz
Mechanisms of CNS invasion by viruses
Anti-viral immune defense in the CNS
Acute viral infection of the CNS: meningitis and encephalitis
Persistent viral infection in the CNS
Infection of the developing CNS: virus infection in pediatric medicine

Human pathogenic DNA viruses (2 hours) Stefan Kunz

Overview human pathogenic DNA viruses

Overview poxviruses
Pathogenesis of smallpox
Subversion of innate host cell immunity by poxviruses

Adenoviruses as human pathogens

Overview human pathogenic herpesviruses
Herpes simplex virus and viral latency
Epstein-Barr Virus: viral latency and cancer

Human pathogenic RNA viruses I (1 hour) Stefan Kunz

Overview human pathogenic DNA viruses

Overview human pathogenic enteroviruses
Rhinoviruses and cosackievirus: viral tropism and pathogenesis

Overview human pathogenic paramyxoviruses
Measles virus: Virus-induced immunosuppression
Paramyxovirus respiratory infections in adults and children

Bunyaviruses as emerging zoonotic pathogens
Crimean Congo hemorrhagic fever viruses: the European Ebola

Human pathogenic RNA viruses II (1 hour) Jérôme Gouttenoire

Overview human pathogenic flaviviruses
Dengue virus
West Nile virus
Hepatitis C virus

Part III Medical Mycology (Dominique Sanglard, 6 hours total)

The lecture on medical mycology will give an outlook on most important fungal pathogens in humans. The emphasis will be given to the principal characteristics of these pathogens (epidemiology, life cycle, biology and genetics) and will also include major mechanisms of fungal pathogenesis and host responses. The final part of the lecture will be dedicated to strategies to combat fungal diseases and will also address the escape mechanisms elaborated by the pathogens.

Introduction of Medical Mycology (1h)
Characteristics of most common fungal diseases and of the causative agents

Important fungal pathogens (3h)
Fungal biology and genetics
Fungal pathogenesis

Treatment of fungal diseases (2h)
Antifungal agents and resistance mechanisms


Written exam


Will be provided for each block.

Exigences du cursus d'études

Course Virology B.Sc. 5th semester (Kunz) or equivalent

Canton de Vaud
Swiss University
Unicentre  -  CH-1015 Lausanne  -  Suisse  -  Tél. +41 21 692 11 11  -  Fax  +41 21 692 26 15