Ruminant Gut Microbiology

Distance Learning starts May 2018


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.

Contributing Researchers: Prof Jamie Newbold, Dr Eli Saetnan, Dr Kenton Hart, Dr Alejandro Belanche, Dr Toby Wilkinson, Dr Eric Pinloche, Dr Eva Ramos, Dr Gabriel de la Fuente. 

Student Comments:

"Learning about rumen manipulation has given me plenty of ideas for potential areas for R&D/product development that my company could start to investigate" Liz Norton, Nutritionist for Miron Bio-Systems

"I was very interested in the work surrounding potential methane mitigation techniques, and the role sequencing can potentially play in reducing the environmental impact of ruminant production through manipulation of the rumen microbial populations." Sam Kelly, Kelly Farm Consulting

To register as a new student click HERE

Existing ATP students please email us at Distance Learner

Bangor University Logo Aberystwyth University Logo NIAB TAG Logo BBSRC Advanced Training Partnership Logo
+44 (0)1970 823224