911314 Molecular microbial ecology of soils

Lecture and exercise
Semester hours
Lecturer (assistant)
Keiblinger, Katharina , Rosinger, Christoph , Werner, Ramona
Offered in
Sommersemester 2023
Languages of instruction


The aim of the course is to get to know molecular methods for the characterization of soil microbial communities theoretically and practically, with special emphasis on soil fungi. The following steps will be conducted practically: soil sampling in the field, DNA extraction, DNA quantification, gel electrophoresis, polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and bioinformatics. In addition, students will learn basic inoculation and isolation techniques to grow identify soil bacteria and fungi. The students will learn how to prepare agar plates, inoculate soil samples, isolate single colonies, and identify them using molecular methods.

Previous knowledge expected

Basic knowledge in molecular biology and lab work is advantageous, but not required

Objective (expected results of study and acquired competences)

After completing the course, the students have a basic understanding of appropriate soil sampling strategies and will be able to isolate DNA from soil samples and investigate microbial communities using molecular methods.
•Historical development of molecular methods
•How molecular identification works (Sanger sequencing, next generation sequencing,…)
•Advantages of molecular methods for the investigation of soil microbial communities as compared to non-molecular methods
•Practical use of methods for the molecular characterization of soil microbial communities
•Analysis and interpretation of DNA sequencing results through bioinformatics
You can find more details like the schedule or information about exams on the course-page in BOKUonline.