Microbiology: history and scope; contributions of Leeuwenhock, Pasteur and Koch. Principle of microbiology: Light Microscopy (Bright field, dark field, phase contrast, fluorescence); preparation and staining of specimens; electron microscopy. Microbial taxonomy: principles; numerical taxonomy; major characteristics used in taxonomy; classification according to Bergey’s manual of systematic bacteriology. Structure and functions of prokaryotic cells; difference between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Microbial growth and nutrition: the growth curve; factors affecting growth of microorganisms, estimation of bacterial growth; bacteriostatic and bactericidal agents; the common nutrient requirements and nutritional types of microorganisms. Bacterial genetics; DNA as the genetic material; structure of DNA; bacterial mutations (spontaneous and induced); genetic recombination- (transformation, transduction, conjugation). Micro flora of air, soil and water: methods for controlling microorganisms in air; water as carrier of pathogens.