Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia
Departamento de Ciências da Vida
Teacher in charge
Álvaro Luís Afonso Moreira Rato de Fonseca
To understand scientific methods used to study Molecular Evolution and Molecular Phylogeny To acquire in-depth knowledge about the mechanisms underlying Molecular Evolution To learn to use Molecular Phylogenetic tools To understand the mechanisms of genome evolution To acquire specific knowledge about the molecular mechanisms underlying resistance to antibiotics in Gram positive pathogenic bacteria. To apply the newly acquired knowledge to the analysis of case studies.
Module I (José Paulo Sampaio)
Introduction to biological evolution. Mechanisms of evolution: natural selection, genetic drift, mutation and genetic flow. Introduction to molecular evolution. Evolution of macromolecules and the evolutionary history of genes and organisms. Mutation and changes in the allelic frequencies. Rates of nucleotide substitution. Molecular Phylogeny. Homology and homoplasy. Species - concepts and definitions. Molecular clocks and the phylogeny of fungi. Gene and genome duplications in the evolution of ascomycetous yeasts. The role of comparative genomics in the study of the evolutionary fate of duplicated genes. Synteny. Orthologous and paralogous genes. Role and consequences of the Whole Genome Duplication in the evolution of Saccharomyces cerevisiae.
Module II (Álvaro Fonseca)
Lectures: Microbial Evolution and Diversity. Microbial diversity as a result of evolution. Repercussions of the ‘molecular revolution’ in Microbial Biology. Molecular phylogenies and the tree of life. Molecular methods for the evaluation of microbial diversity: advantages and drawbacks, culture independent methods. Origin and evolution of the eukaryotic cell and its organelles: impact of molecular methodologies. Problem-solving sessions: Use of DNA sequences for the identification of microorganisms and the analysis of their phylogenetic position - the use of bioinformatics tools and online searches in public databases.
Module III (Ilda Sanches)
Molecular mechanisms underlying antibiotic resistance in Gram positive pathogenic bacteria. Resistance to beta-lactamic and glycopeptide antibiotics (case studies).
Li, W.-H. 1997. Molecular evolution. Sinauer Associates. Sapp, J. (Ed.) 2005 Microbial phylogeny and evolution: concepts and controversies. Oxford University Press. Research articles that will be made available in the Moodle Molecular Microbiology Web page.
Lectures and practicals, including discussion of case studies, lab sessions and bioinformatics sessions.
Students must attend 2/3 of lectures and practicals. Evaluation by final exam.