cod. 16964

Academic year 2019/20
1° year of course - Second semester
Professor responsible for the course unit
integrated course unit
12 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Course unit structured in the following modules:

Learning objectives

Knowledge and understanding
Students will be able to acquire and develop the basic knowledge of evolutionary mechanisms. Knowledge of the various systems and their functions, acquisition and recognition of the main vertebrate and invertebrate species through the use of specific system keys.
Applying knowledge and understanding
Students will be able to acquire and develop the basic knowledge of zoology and understand the connections and relationships between animal populations both in natural environments and in intensive breeding. They will acquire the ability to analyze biodiversity and to evaluate also global issues related to climate change, invasion of alien species, and exploitation of resources.
Making judgments
Course students acquire an autonomy of judgment in the evaluation and interpretation of experimental data and the setting of strategies for the application of the monitoring and protection technologies in both natural and captive environments.
Communication skills
Students will be able to expose the skills acquired with clarity and language skills using a useful bibliography to communicate specific knowledge.
Learning skills
Students will be able to find information from international zoological literature, using databases and other tools available on the net, to understand and transmit it. Acquiring these skills will enable them to upgrade their knowledge and to deal independently with subsequent levels of learning to be exploited also in the preparation of the final test.
The course aims to provide students with general and specific knowledge of the molecular constitution of the plant cell, as well as to its organization into tissues and organs and functioning of the same. This knowledge will provide the student with the ability to understand the function of the plant in terms of ecology and as food for heterotrophic organisms. The course will provide the student with the basic skills also to recognize and describe the different plant species of interest in agriculture and animal production and indicate the ways to use them for productive purposes.
Knowledge and understanding: Students will be able to acquire and develop the basic knowledge of plant biodiversity, considered as part of the global evolutionary process. Knowledge of cellular and tissue specific structures, acquisition and recognition of principal plant species through the use of specific systematic keys. Knowledge of the various organs and their functions.
Ability to Apply Knowledge and Understanding: Students will be able to acquire and develop basic botanical knowledge, in order to understand the structure-function relationship and its connection to both natural and agricultural environment. They also will acquire the ability to comprehend biodiversity, evaluating its concern related to climate change, invasion of alien species, and exploitation of resources.
Judging autonomy: students will acquire autonomy of judgment for the evaluation/ interpretation of experimental data, aimed at the setting of technological strategies for the exploitation and protection of plant species of interest.
Communicative Skills: students will improve their exposure clarity and language skills, using bibliographic tools to communicate specific knowledge.
Learning Skills: students will be able to expand acquired skills, through the access to bibliographic resources and other internet available tools, in order to understand and transmit it. Acquiring these skills will enable them to improve their knowledge and to independently reach upgraded levels of learning, to be exploited also in the preparation of the final test.


Knowledge provided for the entrance examination Recovery of educational debt.
Overcoming courses in: Mathematics, Physics and Computer Science.

Course unit content

The first part of the course of Zoology concerns basic principles of the origin of life on Earth and evolution theory. The second part of the course is dedicated to the taxonomy and classification of the major life groups.
The third part of the course deals with he basic principles of animal behaviour and ecology.
The first part of the course of Botany concerns the study of histology and anatomy of the plant, passing from the cellular organization to the level of tissue, organ and then the whole plant.
The second part of the course is characterized by the discussion of the physiology of plant organisms, including the study of the processes of absorption, transport and assimilation of nutrients, as well as the processes of photosynthesis and cellular respiration, with considerations on the physiology of stress and the production of secondary metabolites .
The third part of the course is devoted to the study of the classification of plants as well as the description of some herbaceous plant species of interest in agriculture and animal production.

Full programme

The origin of life on Earth.
The life: biological principles and science of zoology. The evolution of life on Earth.
The history and development of evolutionary theory. The origin of species. The patterns of inheritance.

Diversity of animal life.
Architectural pattern of an animal. Classification and phylogeny of animals. Basic taxonomy. Invertebrate/Vertebrate structure and function of those species of primary veterinary medical interest.
Protoza, Porifera, Cnidarians, Plathelmintes, Nematoda, Annelids
Molluscs. Arthropodes. Chordates: Fishes. Amphibia. Reptiles. Birds. Mammals.

Functional organization of animals.
Protection. Support and movement.
Digestive system. Nervous system. Reproductive system. Sensory system. (These topics are explored from an evolutionary point of view).

Animals and their environments.
Animal distribution and growth. Dynamics of ecosystems. Population ecology. Conservation biology.

Basic element of animal behaviour.
The study of animal behaviour and its applications in veterinary medicine.
Learning and instinct.
Classical conditioning. Instrumental conditioning.
Behavioural genetics, evolution and domestication.
Social and reproductive behaviour.
Communication. Human and animal interactions.
Stress and welfare. Normal and abnormal behaviour. Behavioural indicators of welfare.

ANATOMY OF ANGIOSPERMAE - Plant Cell - Root - The stem - The leaf - Plant tissue - Life cycle of Angiosperms: flower, fertilization, embryo, seed, fruit Plant Physiology - WATER BALANCE OF PLANT - The water in the soil - Water absorption by the roots - Transport of water through the xylem - Movement of water from the leaf to the atmosphere - THE MINERAL NUTRITION AND TRANSPORTATION OF SOLUTI - Essential nutrients for plants - Soil, roots and microbes - Absorption of mineral elements of the soil - Processes of membrane transport - Transport of ions in the roots - THE PHOTOSYNTHESIS: Reactions to light - Organization photosynthetic apparatus - Organization of antenna systems for light absorption - Stages of photosynthesis - Mechanisms of the electron transport - Transport of protons and ATP synthesis in the chloroplast - Synthesis of glucose - THE PHOTOSYNTHESIS: Reactions of carbon - The Calvin cycle - The cycle C3 for the oxidation of carbon - The cycle C4 carbon - Starch and sucrose - Control of the photosynthetic apparatus - TRANSLOCATION in the phloem - Routes of translocation - Models of translocation: from its sources and sinks - Substances translocated in the phloem and speed of movement - The model of the pressure flow for the transport of the phloem - Loading of the phloem - Download the phloem (phloem unloading) and transition from "pitsource" - Distribution of photosynthesis: the allocation and distribution - The transport of signaling molecules - MITOCHONDRIA AND LIPID METABOLISM - Glycolysis, the citric acid cycle, electron transport and mitochondrial ATP synthesis - Lipid Metabolism - ASSIMILATION OF MINERAL NUTRIENTS - Assimilation of nitrate and ammonium - Assimilation of sulfur - Assimilation of phosphate - Assimilation of cations - Assimilation of oxygen - SECONDARY METABOLITES AND DEFENSES OF PLANTS - Cutina, suberin and waxes - Secondary metabolites: terpenes, phenolic compounds, nitrogencontaining compounds - Induced plant defenses against insects and herbivores against pathogens - CELL WALLS: STRUCTURE, AND EXPANSION BIOGENESIS - Structure and synthesis of plant cell walls - Models of cell expansion - Speed of cell elongation - Degradation of the wall and plant defenses - Physiology STRESS - Water stress, thermal and saline - Lack of oxygen SYSTEMATIC - Classification, nomenclature and Study of Variability - Taxonomy -the evolution of land plants - Divisions of the plant kingdom - Identification of vascular plants - Classification of plants of agricultural interest - CEREALS - Wheat - Durum wheat - Farro small, medium and big spelled spelled or spelled - Barley - Rye - Oats - Triticale - Corn - Sorghum - Rice - Millet and panic - Buckwheat - INDUSTRIAL PLANTS - Soy - Rape - Sunflower - Peanut - Castor - Safflower - Sesame - Sugar beet - Tobacco - Hemp - Cotton - Flax - Kenaf - FODDER - Fodder legume - Alfalfa - Red Clover or violet - White clover - Berseem - Persian clover - Clover hybrid - Crimson Clover - Ginestrino - Lupinella - On the - Forage grasses - Grass mazzolina - Tall fescue - Timothy or Timothy - Ryegrass - Ryegrass - Bromo cathartic - Bromo helpless - Fescue lawns - Red fescue - Festuca ovina - Simultaneous between legumes and grasses - Plants by erbaio - Pastures


Cleveland P., Hickman JR. et al. Diversità animale. McGraw-Hill, 2016, Web site.
Cleveland P., Hickman JR. et al. Fondamenti di zoologia. McGraw-Hill, 2016, Web site.

BOTANICA - parte generale.
Idelson&Gnocchi, 2006
Introduzione alla biologia vegetale.
McGraw-Hill, 2008
Rost, Barbour, Stocking, Murphy.
Biologia delle piante.
Trad. di Bertotti, Bevilacqua, rev. di A. Minelli
Zanichelli, 2008

Teaching methods

Lectures are aimed to illustrate the basic principles of animal and plant biology by providing a trace for personal study. The frontal lessons of Zoology will take place with the help of power point slides and videos to illustrate animal behavior. At the end of the course, the visit to the Natural History Museum of Milan will allow to review animal biodiversity in an evolutionary reading path.
Lectures will be conducted through the aid of a POWER POINT support. It
is planned to show presentations full of pictures, graphs and diagrams
that enable maximum understanding and synthesis of the topics covered.

Assessment methods and criteria

Zoology: Written examination (consisting of 20 multiple choice questions and 2 open questions) followed by an oral examination. Aims: to verify the capacity of the student to tackle problems of zoology using the methodological principles and knowledge acquired during the course; to evaluate the student's ability to carry out cross-links between the various topics covered during the Course.

The assessment of the success of the planned course includes a written
examination By means of specific questions, it will be determined
whether the student has acquired general and particulars knowledge of
the course contents, he gained the ability to understand the function of
plants and has the basic skills to recognize and describe the plant species
The evaluation will be performed by means of the formulation of at least 10
questions, covering each part of the course; questions will be posed in
open form, and histological and graphical figures could be provided.

Students with specific learning disability diagnosis (DSA), certified under law n° 17/2010, will be granted the facilities provided by law.

Other information

Learning results.
At the end of the course, the student must be able to use acquired knowledge and show clear understanding of the following:
- the mechanisms involved in the evolution of life on Earth;
- genetic principles responsible for the variety of animal and plant life;
- taxonomic basis for the classification of animal and plant species;
- basic elements of animal behaviour and ecology, aimed at allowing the student to critically evaluate animal welfare and well-being.