Institute of Microbiology (IM)

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Institute of Microbiology (IM)

The Institute of Microbiology is the benchmark for microbiology south of the Alps. Its unified vision considers human, animal and environmental health as a whole in a larger concept of 'one health'. 

The research areas of Biosafety, Hygiene and Environment and Vector Ecology focus on the monitoring and study of public health. Then there is the area of environmental microbiology represented by the Microbial Ecology sector, where basic research into biodiversity and the functioning of aquatic ecosystems monitors the health of the natural environment. The area of applied microbiology is represented by the Environmental Biotechnology sector, which deals with the valorisation of waste biomass and the recycling of water, fostering a more sustainable circular economy.

Mission and goals

The Institute is the competence centre for microbiology in the fields of biosafety, environmental biotechnology, vector ecology, microbial ecology and hygiene and the environment. Within the scope of its mission, the IM carries out its activities in research, service and training. It actively cooperates with Swiss and foreign academic institutions and intends to consolidate and expand the network of collaborations within SUPSI and with other realities outside and inside the Canton of Ticino.

Department of belonging
Dipartimento ambiente costruzioni e design


Institute Director
Francesco Origgi





The Institute has facilities in Bellinzona and Mendrisio where it offers services and training in different areas of microbiology. 

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The Institute regularly hosts students from Swiss and foreign universities and offers scientific and logistical support for internships, semester work, Bachelor's, Master's and PhD programmes. The IM also plays a role in the professional training of apprentices in biology and as support for the upper middle level.


Employees offer their expertise in organising and conducting individual visits and training days for companies and schools.  The workshop also offers information days for middle school and high school students to help young people find a suitable career path.


  • Practical course in general and medical microbiology for the Scuola Superiore Medico-Tecnico di Locarno (specialising in biomedical analysis).
  • Practical course in molecular microbiology for the Scuola Superiore Medico-Tecnico di Locarno (specialising in biomedical analysis).
  • Practical course in microbiology and molecular biology techniques for biology apprentices at the Professional School of Lugano-Trevano.
  • Theoretical course in microbial hydrobiology for the University of Geneva at the Alpine Biology Centre, Piora (14B041 Hydrobiologie microbienne: Environnement naturel et construit, aspects écologiques, hygiéniques et sanitaires).
  • Practical course in microbial hydrobiology for the University of Geneva at the Alpine Biology Centre, Piora (14B641 Hydrobiologie microbienne: Ecologie microbienne et ecologie alpine).
  • CUSO Doctoral programme in microbial sciences: Field course in environmental microbiologyat the Alpine Biology Centre, Piora.
  • Portico course on microfungal and periphyton sampling in different Piora reptiles (14B026 Ecologie moleculaire microbienne).
  • Bioutils Courses "Biology: from Theory to Practice" Practical Training of Middle School and High School Teachers

Training projects

Knowing Microbes: Providing the Tools for Accurate Microbiological Education.
The aim is to raise awareness of the importance of micro-organisms in the preservation of biological and ecological systems by offering the public, and schoolchildren in particular, the opportunity to see microbes and learn how they live, reproduce and contribute to the balance of the planet. This is a project in collaboration with the University of Geneva's Microbiology Unit and BiOutils.

the Institute collaborates with the Microbial Ecology Group of the University of Geneva's Microbiology Unit by sharing research projects and Master's and PhD work. The Institute also provides scientific support to the Piora Alpine Biology Centre (CBA) for activities related to environmental microbiology. In collaboration with the CBA, courses are organised with university and cantonal institutes, promoting academic and research synergies.

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The Institute of Microbiology has facilities in Bellinzona and Mendrisio in which it conducts research and offers services and training.

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  • Institute of Microbiology

    Scuola universitaria professionale della Svizzera italiana

  • Via Mirasole 22a
    CH-6501 Bellinzona


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