Molecular Microbiology Laboratory

Molecular Microbiology Laboratory

A Writing-Intensive Course

2nd Edition - August 31, 2012

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  • Authors: Bruce Geller, Katherine Field
  • eBook ISBN: 9780123977526

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Molecular Microbiology Laboratory, Second Edition, is designed to teach essential principles and techniques of molecular biology and microbial ecology to upper-level undergraduates majoring in the life sciences and to develop students' scientific writing skills. A detailed lab preparation manual for instructors and teaching assistants accompanies the lab book and contains a general discussion of scientific writing and critical reading as well as detailed instructions for preparation and peer review of lab reports. Each experimental unit is accompanied by a number of additional writing exercises based upon primary journal articles.

Key Features

  • Exposes students to the new molecular-based techniques
  • Provides faculty with an authoritative, accessible resource for teaching protocols
  • The only manual to incorporate writing exercises, presentation skills and tools for reading primary literature into the curriculum
  • Based on a successful course for which the author won a teaching award
New to this Edition:
- Presents a real-world study of bacterial populations in the environment in the final experiment
- Provides an overview of molecular biology in a new review chapter
- Demonstrates how to design an experiment and how to interpret the results
- Covers grant proposal writing and how panels review proposals
- Presents guidance on public speaking and preparing PowerPoint presentations
- Includes tutorials on three widely used software packages


Appropriate for college sophomores through seniors in any of the life sciences, including microbiology, genetics, general biology, biochemistry, molecular biology, botany, zoology, etc. The experiments are also appropriate for properly equipped junior colleges and liberal arts institutions

Table of Contents

  • Introduction

    Experiment 1. Plasmid Purification and Restriction Mapping

    I Introduction

    II Background: Plasmid DNA Preparation

    III Procedure

    IV Laboratory Report [Class 4 (Draft) and Class 5]

    V Questions (Class 5)

    VI In-Class Writing Exercise (Class 2)

    VII Restriction Mapping Exercises (Class 3)

    VIII In-Class Writing Exercise (Class 4)

    Experiment 2. Affinity Purification of Histidine-Tagged FnbA Protein

    I Introduction

    II Background

    III Procedure

    IV Laboratory Report

    V Critique of Paper by Bush et al.

    Experiment 3. Polymerase Chain Reaction and DNA Sequence Analysis of Bacterial Ribosomal RNA Genes

    I Introduction

    II Background

    III Procedure

    IV Laboratory Report [Class 16 (Draft) and Class 17]

    V Questions (Class 17)

    VI In-Class Writing Exercise (Class 10)

    Experiment 4. Terminal Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism Analysis of 16S Ribosomal RNA Genes from Uncultured Bacterial Communities

    I Introduction

    II Background

    III Procedure

    IV Laboratory Report

    V Questions (Class 20)

    VI Writing Exercise: Editorial on Genetically Modified Crops [Class 14 (Draft) and Class 15]

    VII Writing Assignment: Literature Search Problem [Class 14 (Begin) and Class 20]

    VIII In-Class Writing Exercise (Class 15)

    APPENDIX A: Sample Laboratory Reports

    APPENDIX B: Sample Proposals

    APPENDIX C: Sample Tests

    APPENDIX D: Guidance for Presentations

    APPENDIX E: Revised Paragraph from J. Biol. Chem. 266: 3811–3814 (1991)

    APPENDIX F: Abstract from Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 63: 2647–2653 (1997)

    APPENDIX G: Sequence Editing Tutorial

    APPENDIX H: Peak Scanner Tutorial

    APPENDIX I: Adding Size Standards to Peak Scanner


    APPENDIX K: Checklist for Grading Laboratory Reports

    APPENDIX L: Peer Review Checklist

    APPENDIX M: Career Advice

    APPENDIX N: Molecular Microbiology Laboratory Preparation Manual



Product details

  • No. of pages: 259
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Academic Press 2012
  • Published: August 31, 2012
  • Imprint: Academic Press
  • eBook ISBN: 9780123977526

About the Authors

Bruce Geller

Walt Ream, Professor of Microbiology, Oregon State University, received the Richard M. Bressler Senior Faculty Teaching Award for developing the course this book supports. In addition to this work, he has written numerous peer reviewed scholarly papers, review articles, book articles and chapters and has co-authored another book entitled, Molecular Biology Techniques: An Intensive Laboratory Course. His research led to a discovery for which a patent was issued in 2004. He regularly reviews grant proposals for NSF, USDA, DOE, NIH, American Cancer Society, NSERC-Canada, Lindbergh Foundation, Corporation for Plant Biotechnology Research and he reviews papers for Journal of Bacteriology, Plant Molecular Biology, PNAS, Science, Molecular & General Genetics, Microbiological Reviews, Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions, Biochemistry, Journal of Biological Chemistry, Plasmid, Gene, Plant Physiology, Journal of American Horticulture Society, and Molecular Microbiology. He is a member of Genetics Society of America, American Society for Microbiology, and American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Affiliations and Expertise

Professor, Department of Microbiology, Oregon State University

Katherine Field

Affiliations and Expertise

Associate Professor, Department of Microbiology, Oregon State University

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