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  Entomology Department > Courses

Syllabus for Global Protozoology- Molecular Biology of Protozoa

VPth/Ent 478/578 (3.0 cr) Meets 2 days each week, 1hour 15 minutes per meeting.

email to all course participants: To be determined.

Director: Jeffrey K Beetham Office: 2758a Vet Med. Ph: 294-0873 jbeetham@iastate.edu

Course Description: The emphasis is on the analysis of cellular systems, molecules, and organelles of pathogenic protozoan parasites that are transmitted by arthropod vectors. We focus upon processes and systems that are unique to protozoa, are important to understanding insect-vector/parasite/host biology and ecology, or are targets of disease prevention/treatment programs for international disease control.

Course Format: The general course format will be a combination of lectures and student-led discussions that predominantly derive from the current literature. Students will prepare a written review describing a cutting-edge area of research.


midterm and final exams 50% (25% each)

student presentations 20%

written review 25%

participation 5%

Class presentations (discussion sections): Students will lead the class discussion for one topic (typically lasting 1 class meeting). Students will sign up as a discussion leader for one of the discussion topics within the four class meetings. The format for a 1-class discussion session might involve a 20-30 minute introduction in which a review article is discussed, followed by an in-depth discussion of a primary research article. Include in the introduction the relevance of the topic and remind students of related topics and material we may have covered in earlier classes.

Discussion leaders will decide on relevant papers, with input/approval from the instructor, and will provide handout material (preferably in electronic and in printed formats) to the instructor at least 2 classes prior to when the discussion will be held. All students will be responsible for reading the papers and other handout materials prior to each discussion session.

Writing assignment: Students will prepare a 5 page written review of a "hot topic" related to the course material. There is no reason why a student's hot topic could not also be that student's class presentation topic. The choice of topic will be made with input and approval of the instructor by September 9. Details of this assignment are provided on a separate document.

Course Objectives/Outcomes: Upon completion of this course, students will:

Demonstrate an ability to learn an advanced topic of protozoology via self-directed study of the relevant primary and review literature, and disseminate that knowledge verbally and in writing

Demonstrate an understanding of:

  1. the biology/ecology of select parasitic protozoa and their arthropod vectors
  2. particular molecular and biochemical aspects of parasite biology/ecology
  3. current and potential approaches for parasite/disease control
  4. certain characteristics of culture that play significant roles in parasitic disease prevalence

Special talks of related interest on campus will be announced periodically. Attendance to these is entirely optional. Two I am presently aware of are:

Special needs and accommodations: Please address any special needs or special accommodations with me at the beginning of the semester or as soon as you become aware of your needs. Those seeking accommodations based on disabilities should obtain a Student Academic Accommodation Request form from the Disability Resources office (515-294-6624, located in 1076 Students Services Building).

© 2006 Iowa State University Entomology Department. Last modified March 6, 2006.