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Infectious Disease I:

Bacteria, Biofilms, Microbiome, and Chronic Infection



  • Learn the basic science behind the biofilm form of bacteria, and its relevance to infection in humans.

  • Learn the basic science and terminology of the human microbiome, and its importance as the “third arm of the human immune system.”

  • Learn the importance of the microbiome and its diversity in the different compartments of the skin, digestive, and reproductive tract.

  • Learn the immediate and long term effects of pharmaceutical antibiotics on the microbiome.

  • Learn the effects of foods on the microbiome.

  • Review the science on the role of the microbiome in obesity, insulin resistance, Parkinson's disease, and autism.

  • Learn the specific effects of berberine and its related alkaloids on biofilm structures in infection.

  • Learn unique actions of herbal medicines against bacterial infection beyond direct antimicrobial effects, including inhibition of quorum-sensing, anti-biofilm, and efflux-pump inhibition.

  • Learn selection and formulation with medicinal herbs to maximize the above four actions in synergy.

  • Learn the importance of topical application of immune-stimulating herbs when treating conditions where the herb can come in contact with the infected site.

  • Review a materia medica of more than 30 herbs for their potential effects on infection.

  • Learn the use of media such as honey, vinegar, and boric acid to enhance anti-biofilm effects.

  • Learn materia medica and practical formulation for bacterial infections including MRSA, sinusitis, outer and middle ear infections, gum infections, bacterial vaginosis, wounds, diabetic foot ulcers, paronychia, and others.

  • Learn a materia medica of 22 plants with proven laboratory and clinical effects against fungal infections.

  • Review the beneficial effect of biofilms in the gut as part of the natural defenses of the microbiome.

  • Review the science on internal biofilms within the system.


The discovery of the biofilm form of bacteria, and its universal presence in chronic infections has opened the door a gold-rush of scientific investigation into plants, and their possible roles in the fight against complex bacterial communities. Plants at war with bacteria for hundreds of millions of years have developed complex synergistic combinations of constituents which when combined can do what no single antimicrobial agent can. The research in the last 12 years has verified the powerful effects of the most important traditional herbs against infection. In this course we show how these herbs can be used in conditions where they can be brought into direct contact with the infected site, including conditions not only on the skin, but in the outer and middle ear, the mouth and gums, the sinus, the stomach and upper GI, and the vagina. The information is practical, the herbs are from traditional herbalism and the direct clinical experience of our faculty, and the approach is updated and modified in light of recent science into herbal actions against infection.



With this course you receive Audio files for the 5 lessons, more than 400 slides to accompany the lectures, supplementary notes, readings, and full-text reference articles.  The course comes with a Study Guide and Continuing Education questions. Students enrolled in our courses are also eligible for a 10% discount on purchases at Mountain Rose Herbs.




Lesson 1. Microbiome and the New Microbiology

Lesson 2. Infection and Immunity

Lesson 3. Herbal Therapeutics

Lesson 4. Antifungal Therapeutics

Lesson 5. Gut and Internal Biofilms

Further down on this page you can find Faculty Biographies.


Enrollment for Credit 


To enroll in the course, receive a faculty mentor, and to earn the Continuing Education certificate, follow these steps:

  1. Purchase the course materials in our online store. The materials may be purchased for self-study without further enrollment in the course or tuition. 

  2. When you receive materials, print out the application form or scan it to email. Send it in with the $145 tuition, or make the payment at the school store. 

  3. This entitles you to assignment of a faculty mentor for 12 weeks after we notify you that your enrollment is accepted. You may also request and extension. 

  4. Read the instructions for obtaining CE credit in the read-me-first file with the notes.

  5. Look over the CE questions and review them before listening to the audio. 

  6. Complete any assignments or readings and answer the CE questions for each lesson.

  7. You will receive a certificate reflecting 21 hours of CE credit.


The recorded lectures were delivered by NAIMH Director Paul Bergner in classroom settings, edited and supplemented with studio portions. If you enroll, you will also be assigned a faculty mentor. All our faculty are fully qualified clinical nutritionists as well as medical herbalists. Click here to see Faculty biographies. 

About This Course
    21 CEU

Term:      12 weeks
Materials:     $129
Tuition:    $145 (optional)

This course may be taken stand-alone, or as a  course in the Advanced Clinical Therapeutics Certificate

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