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Pelagic Microbiology

Code: 44553
ECTS: 6.0
Lecturers in charge: izv. prof. dr. sc. Sunčica Bosak
Lecturers: izv. prof. dr. sc. Sunčica Bosak - Practicum
Take exam: Studomat
English level:


All teaching activities in the course will be held on English. This level includes courses with multiple groups (i.e., all teaching will be held strictly in Croatian for Croatian groups, and strictly in English for English groups).

1. komponenta

Lecture typeTotal
Lectures 30
Practicum 30
* Load is given in academic hour (1 academic hour = 45 minutes)

1. Describe most important heterotrophic and autotrophic groups of microorganisms and their ecological role in marine plankton
2. Discuss application and usefulness of large metagenomic projects in marine microbiological research
3. Analyse influence of global climatic change on pelagic organisms and microbial food-webs
4. Recognise scientific problem and appropriate research question/hypothesis in original scientific articles on the topic of marine microbiology
5. Evaluate the quality of the scientific report regarding the basic principles of the scietific writting
6. Apply graphic computer programmes in presentation of the oceanographic data (physico-chemical and biological data) in pelagic environment
7. Interpret oceanographic field data using appropriate scientific methods

Course aims:
The course Pelagic microbiology will introduce the students to the diversity and ecological relationships of microbial groups in the marine pelagic environment. At each lecture, except the theoretical part, where the overview of the most recent scientific advances and knowledge on the photosynthetic and heterotrophic plankton gropus is presented, students will discuss the scientific article with the relevant topic. Oral presenation and discussion will benefit the students and develop their skills of critical analysis and evaluation of the scientifica article. In the practical part of the course, students will learn how to use basic computer programmes for the statistical analysis and graphical presentation of the oceanographic data.


1. Introductory leacture,; diversity and ecological significance of the microorganisms in the marine pelagic ecosystem.
2. Marine viruses
3. Photosynthetic picoplankton: cyanobacteria Synechoccocus and Prochlorococcus
4. Heterotrophic picoplankton I: bacteria,; microbial food web; bacterial metabolic diversity; proteorhodopsin
5. Heterotrophic picoplankton II: Archaea; Thaumarchaeota and their role in the biogeochemical nitrogen cycle
6. Heterotrophic and autotrophic picoeukaryotes: overview of biodiversity and ecology
7. Nanophytoplankton: coccolitophorids and cryptophytes
8. Microphytoplankton and nanophytoplankton: diatoms and dinoflagellates
9. Global climatic changes and their influence on marine microorganisms and pelagic food webs: ocean acidification and global warming

Practical part
Computer work, students will learn how to use software packages such as Grapher and Ocean Data View for the graphical presentation of environmental and biological phytoplankton abundance data collected as a part of the field investigations of the Laboratory for the Biological oceanography. Students will also learn and apply the basic statistical packages such as Statistica and Primer in the interpretation of the same dataset.
  1. Kirchman, D.L., 2000: Microbial ecology of the oceans. Wiley-Liss, New York.
    Recentni originalni i pregledni znanstveni članci odgovarajuće tematike.
  2. Munn, C.B., 2004: Marine microbiology. Ecology and applications. BIOS Scientific Publishers, London
    Šolić, M., Krstulović, N., 2000: Ekologija morskog bakterioplanktona. Institut za oceanografiju i ribarstvo, Split.
    Šolić, M., Krstulović, N., 2006: Mikrobiologija mora. Institut za oceanografiju i ribarstvo, Split.
    Viličić, D., 2003: Fitoplankton u ekološkom sustavu mora. Školska knjiga, Zagreb.
2. semester
Mandatory course - Regular module - Marine Biology
Consultations schedule: