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Ruminant Gut Microbiology

Ruminant Gut Microbiology

Release Date: Each June


This module will explore the fundamental research that is developing our understanding of the anatomy and environmental conditions of the rumen, covering the negative and positive effects of rumen digestion on productivity. You will explore the function and importance in the rumen of bacteria, protozoa, fungi and archaea. The study area will investigate both traditional culture-based and modern molecular-based methods used to investigate rumen microbiology, together with a review of ways of manipulating rumen fermentation to improve productivity whilst decreasing the environmental footprint of ruminant agriculture.

The module’s units consist of:

  • Anatomy and environment - the conditions within the rumen of major ruminants.
  • The importance of rumen fermentation to the host - positive and negative aspects of fermentation on animal productivity and the environment.
  • Bacteria within the rumen - the diversity of bacteria and their importance to rumen environment and function.
  • Fungi within the rumen – the diversity of fungi and their importance to rumen environment and function.
  • Protozoa within the rumen - the diversity of protozoa and their importance to rumen environment and function.
  • Archaea within the rumen - the diversity of archaea and their importance to rumen environment and function.
  • In-vitro methods of rumen study – culture-based in-vitro-based models used to study rumen fermentation.
  • Molecular based techniques to study the rumen - use of modern molecular-based methods to study rumen microbial diversity and function.
  • Rumen manipulation - the use of biotic and abiotic agents to manipulate rumen fermentation.

Tutors

Tutors Name
Dr Cate Williams