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Predoctoral Course Catalog


Dental Curriculum Threads

Oral Microbiology

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

Course Overview

Dental caries and periodontal diseases 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 functions of the human innate and adaptive immune responses as they pertain to the oral cavity.
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. Explain the basis of oral bacterial virulence factors and bacterial immune evasion associated with oral diseases.
5. Describe the bacteriological etiology and pathogenic mechanisms involved in the two major plaque-related diseases, caries and periodontal disease.
6. Describe the principles of clinical asepsis.

UWSOD Competencies: C-03

Date last updated: 2023-11-21