The objective of the course is to acquaint students with the role of microorganisms in the transformation processes of food products and their influence on the quality and safety of food, the factors that determine the presence, growth and survival of microorganisms in food and ability to apply physical, chemical and biological agents for microbiological food control. In addition, the course aims to: raise awareness of the major microbial groups involved in the production of fermented foods and the growing significance starter; know the main diseases originating from microorganisms through the consumption of food and microbial changes of food; know the microorganisms responsible of food decay (alteration; deterioration); understand the process conducted by spontaneous fermentation and fermentation inoculated.

teacher profile | teaching materials


Food microbiology: General section
1. Microbiology: basilar concepts
2. Structure and function of microbial cells: Prokariotes and Eukariotes
3. Microbial metabolism. Nutrition and energy production
4. Molecular microbiology. Bacteria genetics; horizontal gene transfer
4b. Bacteriophages
5. Microbial growth: principles and measurement methods
6. Microbial genomics
7. Metabolism regulation
Food microbiology: Special section
1. History of food microbiology. General principles. Microbial fermentations: role in food
transformation processes
2. The main microorganisms in food: taxonomy. Contaminations. Microbe interactions
3. Ecology and physiology of microorganisms in food: environmental factors affecting
microbial development
4. Classic and molecular methods for quantitative e qualitative microbial determination in food
5. Control of microbes in food: inhibition of microbial growth
6. Food pathogens
7. Microbiological analysis of drinking waters

Core Documentation

General section
Madigan et al. Brock - Biologia dei microrganismi (XIV edizione). Pearson Italia (Milano), ISBN
978-88-9190-0944. Chapters 1-7.
Special section
G. A. Farris et al. Microbiologia dei prodotti alimentari. CEA (Rozzano, MI), ISBN 9-788808-
182463. Chapters 1-7.

Reference Bibliography

Articles presented in class and available to students on Moodle, to integrate and deepen the topics of the program.

Type of delivery of the course

Due to the regulations due to the pandemic, the lessons this year were mainly conducted remotely and recorded on Teams. Practical exercises in the microbiology laboratory, this year remote simulation.

Type of evaluation

Questions about the program, at least 2 on each part; links between different topics of the program relating to different themes; for example, for certain groups of bacteria: taxonomy, metabolic properties, applications.