MBV9150 – Molecular and Cell Biology of Microbes - Host Interactions

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Changes in the course due to coronavirus

Autumn 2020 the exams of most courses at the MN Faculty will be conducted as digital home exams or oral exams, using the normal grading scale. The semester page for your course will be updated with any changes in the form of examination.

See general guidelines for examination at the MN Faculty autumn 2020.

Course content

The course covers the themes and diversities of plant and animal associations with microbes that involve beneficial relationships (symbiosis). Emphasis will be placed on the molecular mechanisms acting within both the microbe and host that create, shape and define the symbiotic state. The course provides insight into the critical (but often unappreciated) role of both exo- and endosymbionts to evolutionary processes.

Learning outcome

After completing the course we expect your competence to include the following:

  • Have a deep understanding of symbiotic microbial - host interactions at the molecular and ecological levels
  • Be able to critically analyze state of the art literature relating to microbial symbiosis
  • Be able to understand the crucial role of microbial symbiosis as a driving element of evolution
  • Be able to recognize the commonalities and differences defining symbiotic and pathogenic microbial - host interactions
  • Be able to design and execute research on symbiotic microbial - host systems

Admission to the course

PhD candidates from the University of Oslo should apply for classes and register for examinations through Studentweb.

If a course has limited intake capacity, priority will be given to PhD candidates who follow an individual education plan where this particular course is included. Some national researchers’ schools may have specific rules for ranking applicants for courses with limited intake capacity.

PhD candidates who have been admitted to another higher education institution must apply for a position as a visiting student within a given deadline.

The courses MBV4150 and MBV9150 have common admission. Applicants are ranked by the following criteria:

1. PhD candidates and master students at the MN faculty who have the course as part of the approved curriculum.

2. Other PhD candidates and visiting PhD candidates.

3. Students with admission to single courses on master’s level and exchange students

4. Applicants are ranked by credits in each group; all applicants within 1st rank before applicants in 2nd etc. If admission is limited to a fixed number of participants, admission will be decided by drawing lots for students who are ranked equally

Formal prerequisite knowledge

Admission to a PhD program

MBV1030 – General biochemistry (discontinued) or BIOS1130 – Biokjemi IMBV2010 – Molecular biology (continued) or BIOS2900 – Molecular BiologyMBV3060 – General microbiology (continued) or BIOS3910 – Microbiology and Mycology

Overlapping courses

  • 10 credits overlap with BIOS5910.
  • 10 credits overlap with BIOS9910.


  • Lectures
  • Seminars including student presentations


  • 3 hour written exam
  • During the colloquia you will be asked to present a short seminar on a subject related to the course topics. 
  • The seminar will count 50% towards the course evaluation. The other 50% will comprise an written exam.

(Optional oral exam depending on the number of participants.)

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt. It will also be counted as one of the three attempts to sit the exam for this course, if you sit the exam for one of the following courses: MBV4150 – Molecular biology of microbes - host interactions.

Examination support material

No exam support materials is alloved

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English.You may submit your response in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a pass/fail scale. Read more about the grading system.

Resit an examination

This course offers both postponed and resit of examination. Read more:

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) Oct. 25, 2020 12:13:59 PM

Facts about this course

Teaching language