General Aptitude (GA)
Verbal Ability: English grammar, sentence completion, verbal analogies, word groups, instructions, critical reasoning and verbal deduction.
Numerical Ability: Numerical computation, numerical estimation, numerical reasoning and data interpretation.
Historical Perspective: Discovery of microbial world; Landmark discoveries relevant to the field of microbiology; Controversy over spontaneous generation; Role of microorganisms in transformation of organic matter and in the causation of diseases.
Methods in Microbiology: Pure culture techniques; Theory and practice of sterilization; Principles of microbial nutrition; Enrichment culture techniques for isolation of microorganisms; Light-, phase contrast- and electron-microscopy.
Microbial Taxonomy and Diversity: Bacteria, Archea and their broad classification; Eukaryotic microbes: Yeasts, molds and protozoa; Viruses and their classification; Molecular approaches to microbial taxonomy.
Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Cells: Structure and Function: Prokaryotic Cells: cell walls, cell membranes, mechanisms of solute transport across membranes, Flagella and Pili, Capsules, Cell inclusions like endospores and gas vesicles; Eukaryotic cell organelles: Endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus, mitochondria and chloroplasts.
Microbial Growth: Definition of growth; Growth curve; Mathematical expression of exponential growth phase; Measurement of growth and growth yields; Synchronous growth; Continuous culture; Effect of environmental factors on growth.
Control of Micro-organisms: Effect of physical and chemical agents; Evaluation of effectiveness of antimicrobial agents.
Microbial Metabolism: Energetics: redox reactions and electron carriers; An overview of metabolism; Glycolysis; Pentose-phosphate pathway; Entner-Doudoroff pathway; Glyoxalate pathway; The citric acid cycle; Fermentation; Aerobic and anaerobic respiration; Chemolithotrophy; Photosynthesis; Calvin cycle; Biosynthetic pathway for fatty acids synthesis; Common regulatory mechanisms in synthesis of amino acids; Regulation of major metabolic pathways.
Microbial Diseases and Host Pathogen Interaction: Normal microbiota; Classification of infectious diseases; Reservoirs of infection; Nosocomial infection; Emerging infectious diseases; Mechanism of microbial pathogenicity; Nonspecific defense of host; Antigens and antibodies; Humoral and cell mediated immunity; Vaccines; Immune deficiency; Human diseases caused by viruses, bacteria, and pathogenic fungi.
Chemotherapy/Antibiotics: General characteristics of antimicrobial drugs; Antibiotics: Classification, mode of action and resistance; Antifungal and antiviral drugs.
Microbial Genetics: Types of mutation; UV and chemical mutagens; Selection of mutants; Ames test for mutagenesis; Bacterial genetic system: transformation, conjugation, transduction, recombination, plasmids, transposons; DNA repair; Regulation of gene expression: repression and induction; Operon model; Bacterial genome with special reference to E.coli; Phage λ and its life cycle; RNA phages; RNA viruses; Retroviruses; Basic concept of microbial genomics.
Microbial Ecology: Microbial interactions; Carbon, sulphur and nitrogen cycles; Soil microorganisms associated with vascular plants.