The course will encompass the study of the general characteristics of microorganisms with emphasis on those of dental relevance. The concept of the mouth as a microbial habitat, the nature of the oral microbiome, factors influencing oral microbial ecology and the impact of the oral microbiome in health and disease will addressed. The correlation between microbiological properties and virulence factors of selected causative agents of common dental infectious pathologies as well as the oral manifestations of systemic conditions will be addressed. The students will be introduced to the principles of infection control as well as diagnostic approaches and new technologies utilized for microbial identification and outbreak investigation.