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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Leslie B. Zeman
BIOL 466
Seattle Campus

Pathobiology of Emerging Diseases

Examination of the causes, alterations in cellular function, and remediation of emerging diseases in plants and animals from a global perspective. Includes weekly scientific papers. Prerequisite: either BIOL 350, BIOL 355, BIOL 356, or BIOL 380.

Class description

Lectures will introduce students to global disease issues including: competition for resources between humans, livestock and wild animals; challenges of sanitation, overcrowding and simultaneous infection with multiple predators; rapid global transport of humans, plants and animals; and bioterrorism. Genetic, developmental, metabolic, toxicological, viral, bacterial and fungal diseases of plants and animals will be discussed. Discussion will include cellular mechanisms and physiology of the disease process, host immune response and clinical prevention and treatment. Discussion will also place the disease contextually within its geopolitical and ecological influences.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Each week, there will be an introductory lecture framing the issues of a timely emerging disease. The class will be assigned current scientific papers each week, pertaining to the disease. Students will work in groups of six, each charged with presenting their paper to the large group using a structured format. As the quarter passes, students will assume more responsibility for locating pertinent papers and preparing class discussions. The syllabus will be sufficiently flexible to substitute a newsworthy outbreak for a previously planned discussion.

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

There will be assigned papers from the scientific literature every week. Students will take a Catalyst quiz the preceding weekend, covering the factual content of the paper for the upcoming week. A one-hour lecture on Tuesday will discuss the nature of the disease. The two-hour session on Thursday will be for groups to present their scientific paper.

Assessment will be based on weekly conceptual quizzes, 50%; and weekly presentations, 50%. No final exam.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Leslie B. Zeman
Date: 01/25/2013