Skip to content
Predoctoral Course Catalog


Dental Curriculum Threads

Oral Microbiology

Course Director: Jeffrey McLean
Credits: 2
Quarters/Yr of Program: Autumn / 1

Course Overview

Caries and periodontitis are the most common microbial-based diseases that dentists treat every day; therefore, future dentists must have a strong understanding of the basic microbiology behind the etiology of these diseases. This lecture course will cover many aspects of oral microbiology including oral ecology, the human microbiome, and the relationship of bacteria to human health and disease.

Learning Objectives

The student who successfully completes this course will be able to:

1. Discuss the basic scientific rationale for the practice of microbiology in dentistry regarding the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of oral diseases.
2. Explain the basic knowledge of immune responses, oral bacterial virulence factors, and bacterial immune evasion.
3. Describe the principles of bacterial genetic variation and the types of techniques used to assess taxonomic/genomic diversity and their applications in dentistry.
4. Describe innate and adaptive immunity in the oral cavity.
5. Discuss basic knowledge of immune responses, oral bacterial virulence factors, and immune evasion.
6. Describe the bacteriological etiology and pathogenic mechanisms involved in the two major plaque-related diseases, caries, and periodontal disease.
7. Describe the principles of clinical asepsis.

UWSOD Competencies: C-01, C-02, C-03

Date last updated: 2022-11-02