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Microbiology. Institite of microciology , college of life science, Najing Normal University . Chapter 1 Introduction. A. What is microbe? The word microbe (microorganism) is used to describe an organism that is so small that, normally, it cannot be seen without the use of a

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Institite of microciology,college of life science, Najing Normal University


Chapter 1 Introduction

A. What is microbe?

The word microbe (microorganism) is used to

describe an organism that is so small that,

normally, it cannot be seen without the use of a


“microorganism” micro + organism

Microorganism is not a term on taxology


The main groups

Eukaryote-fungoid、microscopic algae、protozoa and some intestinal parasitic worms

Prokaryote-bacteria、actinomycete、cyanobacteriaand archaebacteria

Noncellular orgnism -virus, viroid and



B. The characteristics of microorganism

1. Microscopic

2. independent units

3. less complex

4. rapid growth rates

5. opmipresent


6. Same research techniques

  • Colony research
  • Specific aseptic techniques
  • Similar techniques in species identification and cultivation
  • In fact, irrelevant microbial groups are studied as an independent subject -microbiology, which is mainly in accordance to the research techniques rather than relative among microorganisms.

C. The position in life world

Animal kingdom

Plant kingdom

Bacteria domains





Fungi kingdom







Eukaryote domains



Archaea domains

Protista kindom



Prokaryote kingdom

Common ancester

The categorizing system of biological

five kindoms

The categorizing system of three domains




D. Category

The systemic taxa of mocroorganisms follow the systemic taxa built by Linnaeus,including seven grades from top to bottom:








There are more than ten grades in the systemic taxa altogether, because each grade, if needed, could sub-divide some auxiliary units


All species names of cellular microorganisms obey the Latin binominal nomenclature built by Linnaeus without exception,i.e. , a formal species name is built up by Latin words,and it should be italic. According to binomial nomenclature, a formal species name is consist of a genus name and a adding word of a species. A formal species name present in taxology literature, namers often be added after them, but namers could be omitted generally.


e. g.

Escherichia coli(Migula)Castellani et Chalmers

Aspergillus flavus

Schizosaccharomyces pombe


A formal species name should obey trinomial nomenclature, when the name of microorganism is a subspecies( sub-sp.,Roman type) or a variety( var.,Roman type).


Bacillus thuringiensis subsp.galleria

Saccharomyces cerevisiae var.ellipsoideus


A formal name could be omitted often, when a species name is present repeatedly in a paper or works.

e.g. Escherichia coli, E. coli


E. Research area of microbiology

Microbiology is a science of studying microorganisms, including diversity, activities rules of microorganisms and microbial contributions to the economic activities of human being.


F. The importance and applications of microbiology

Close correlation to the health of human beings and


Wide applications in industrial productions

Great effect of microbe on agricultural productions

Acceleration development on biology

As mode organisms, microorganisms have advantages as follows,

Less complex;

Low cultivate cost and large stock number;

Credible results on statistics;

Rapid growth rates and short doubling time


Consequential event in phylogeny on microbiology

  • 1546 Fracastoro held up that invisible organisms may produce a disease.
  • 1676 Leeuwenhoek found “animalcules”.
  • 1765-1776 Spallanzani refuted autogenesis.
  • 1786 Muller presented the first bacterial category.
  • 1798 Jenner introduced vaccinia.
  • 1838-1839 Schwann & Schleiden put forward cell theory.
  • 1857         Pasteur proved lactic acid fermentation is produced by microorganisms.
  • 1861   Pasteur overthrew “autogeny”.
  • 1864     Pasteur built pasteurization.

1867 — 1869 Lister built disinfection surgery and carried on the carbolic acid disinfection experiment successfully for the first time.

Miescher found nucleic acid.

  • 1876—1877 Koch proved anthrax is induced by anthrax bacilus.
  • 1881Koch initiated separating bacteria by gelatin solid medium.

Louis Pasteur prepared anthrax vaccine.

  • 1882 Koch found Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
  • 1883Koch stated Koch law for the first time. Metchnikoff expounded phagolysis, and built high pressure steam sterilization.

1884 Pasteur investigated hydrophobia vaccine successfully,and invent immunology.


1887    Richard Petri invented double layer Petri dish.

  • 1889 Winogradsky found sulfur cycle and nitrobacteria .Beijerinckseparated rhizobium for the first time.
  • 1890 Von Behring prepared antitoxin to cure diphtheria and tetanus.
  • 1891Sternberg and Pasteur found Streptococcus pneumoniae at the same time.
  • 1895Ivanowsky gave the evidence that tobacco mosaic is produced by virus and Bordet found complementation.
  • 1896Büchner made alcoholic fermentation to glucose with acellular saccharomycete raffinate successfully.
  • 1899Ross proved that malaria pathogenic bacteria is transmitted by mosquito.
  • 1909—1910 Ricketts found rickettsia;Ehrlich synthesized chemotherapeutic agents to cure luetic.

1928Griffith found bacteria transformation.

  • 1929Fleming discovered penicillin.
  • 1935Stanley purified tobacco mosaic virus for the first time,and obtained its “protein crystal”.
  • 1943Luria and Delbück proved that resistance of bacteriophage is resulted by gene spontaneous mutation by fluctuating experiments;

Chain and Flory designed the industrial producing process of penicillin.

  • 1944Avery proved DNA is the carrier of genetic information in the conversion process;Waksman discovered streptomycin.
  • 1946—1947Lederberg and Tatum discovered joining of bacteria and gene linkage.
  • 1949Enders, Robbins and Weller cultivated poliomyelitis virus successfully in nonnerveless tissue culture.

1952Hershey and Chase found bacteriophages injected DNA in host cells;

Lederberg invented replica plating;

Zinder and Lederberg discovered generalized transduction;

Watson and Crick put forward DNA duplex structure.

  • 1956Umbarger discovered feedback supression.
  • 1961Jocob and Monod presented operon model of generegulation.
  • 1961—1966 Holley,Khorana and Nirenberg illuminated genetic code.
  • 1969Edelman measured the primary structure of antigen protein molecule.
  • 1970—1972 Arber, Nathans and Smith discovered and purified restriction enzyme;Temin and Baltimore discovered transcriptase.

1973Ames built mensuration of bacteria to detect carcinogen;

Cohen covered recombinant plasmids to Escherichia coli. successfully for the first time.

  • 1974Khler and Milstein built monoclonal antibody production technology .
  • 1977Woese presented archaea is a special monoid different from bacteria and eukaryote;Sanger analyzed DNA of ΦX174 bacteriophage with total order.
  • 1982—1983 Cech and Altman discovered RNA(ribozyme)containing catalytic activity;Transposable element discovered by McClintock was made his point;Prusiner found prion.

1983—1984 Gallo and Montagnier separated and inspected human immunodeficiency virus (HIV);

Mullis built PCR technology.

  • 1988Deisenhofer discovered photosynthesis pigment of bacteria and began to study it.
  • 1995     Full gene sequencing of the first organism gone it alone (hemophilus influenza) was  completed
  • 1996     Genom of the first antotrophy archaea   sequencing was  completed.       
  • 1997 Genom of the first eukaryote (brewersyeast) sequencing was  completed
  • 2000    Genom of vibrio cholerae  sequencing was  completed.

Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine

  • 1901-1999 39 items.
  • total:77 persons
  • 46 Americans, 11 Englishmen, 7 Frenchmen , 6 Germans,4 Switzers, 2 Australians, 1 Italian
  • In 1945,discovery and development of penicillin
  • In 1952, discovery and development of streptomycin
  • In 1953,metabolism of carbohydrate in cells
  • In 1958,biochemistry study on microbial heredity
  • In 1959,discovery and synthesizing DNA and RNA

In 1962,mensuration of DNA structure

  • In 1965,regulation study on gene activity in cells
  • In 1969,viral infection mechanism study
  • In 1984,development of monoclonal antibody technology and study on immunology
  • In 1997,study on prion
  • In 1999,moving and positioning mechanism in cells study on protein

G.Development ofmicrobiology

  • Perceptual knowledge phase(history prophase)
  • about 800 years before ~ 1676

3. Physiological research period foundation period,( 1861-1897)

French scientist

Louis Pasteur,1822-1895

  • Negated abiogenesis drastically;
  • Proved ferment is reduced by microbe;
  • Invented method of preparation street virus
  • attenuated vaccine.
  • Invented pasteurization.

German microbiologist

Robert Koch, 1843-1910

  • Invented medium and purified microbe using it;
  • Found pathogeny of anthracnose--anthrax bacillus
  • Built Koch Law

Single colony

Acquiring single colony

by scoring method

Koch Law graphics


4.Bio-chemistry research stage, development period (1897-1953)

  • German scientist Eduard Buchner(1897):
  • fermented glucose to alcohol with yeast non-cellular extraction.
  • English scientist Alexander Fleming(1929):
  • discovered the first antibiotics—penicillin in the world.

5.molecular biology research stage, maturation phase(1953-)

J.D.Waston, H.F.C.Crickdiscovered DNA duplex model(1953)


Microbiology prospectingin21century

Having characteristics and commonness of vital phenomenon, microbe will be optimal material to solve significant theory problems and practical applications,such as origin and evolution of life, basic law of matter motion, exploitation of new microbial resources, energy resource and foodstuff etc.



Prescott LM, Harley JP, and Klein DA., Microbiology (5th ed.), Higher education press and McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.2002

Michael TM, John MM, Jack P. Brock., Biology of Micoorganisms,International edition, Pearson Education, Inc.2003

Talaro K. P. Foundations in Microbiology (Fifth Edition), Higher education press and McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.2005

Zhou De-qing,Microbiology textbook,second edition,high education publishing