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Modal verbs

Present Past Future
Can Could[kud] -
May Might[mait] -
Must -  

Make the sentences interrogative and negative. Translate them.

1.Microorganisms can be divided into two groups.

2.Aerobic microorganisms must have atmospheric free oxygen.

3.Bacterial population may double every 9.8 minutes.

Modal verbs and their equivalents

Can (to be ableto) May (to be allowedto) Must (to haveto;to beto)

Instead of the modal verbs use their equivalents in the Present, Past and Future.

1. The growing organism may increases in size.

2. The process of division must depend on the environment.

3. Pathogenic bacteria can cause the human death.


Exercise 8: Read and translate the text:




A microorganism (from the Greek: "small" and "organism") or microbe is a microscopic organism, which may be a single cell or multicellular organism. All the existing microorganisms can be divided into two main groups – aerobic and anaerobic. Aerobic microorganisms must have atmospheric free oxygen for their life and growth. However one knows that free oxygen is not favourable for the development of anaerobic microorganisms.

Most bacterial species are either spherical, called cocci (from Greek kokkos, grain, seed) or rod -shaped, called bacilli (from Latin baculus, stick). Some rod-shaped bacteria, called vibrios, are slightly curved or comma-shaped; others, called spirilla, can be spiral-shaped.

This wide variety of shapes is determined by the bacterial cell wall and cytoskeleton, and it is important because it can influence the ability of bacteria to acquire nutrients, attach to surfaces, swim through liquids etc.

When bacteria multiply they divide. The growing organism increases in size up to a certain limit and in due time divides. The process of division depends on the conditions of the environment. Under optimal conditions, bacteria can grow and divide extremely rapidly, and bacterial population can double as quickly as every 9.8 minutes.

If bacteria form a parasitic association with other organisms, they are classed as pathogens. Pathogenic bacteria are a major cause of human death and diseases and cause infections such as tetanus, typhoid fever, diphtheria, cholera and tuberculosis. Some organisms, such as Staphylococcus or Streptococcus, can cause skin infections, pneumonia, and meningitis.

Other bacteria are the essential part of the normal human flora and usually exist on the skin or mucous membrane without causing any disease at all.

Bacteria frequently secrete chemicals into their environment in order to modify it favourably. The secretions are often proteins and may act as enzymes that digest some forms of food. The understanding of bacterial metabolism and genetics allow the use of biotechnology for the production of therapeutic proteins, such as insulin.

The study of bacteria is known as bacteriology, a branch of microbiology.


Exercise 9. Answer the questions:

1) What conditions are favourable for aerobic microorganisms?

2) What shape do cocci have?

3) What bacteria are called bacilli?

4) When do bacteria grow and multiple extremely rapidly?

5) How do pathogens influence the human body?

6) What diseases can be caused by bacteria?

7) How can people use bacteria?

8) What science studies bacteria?

Exercise 10. Find corresponding equivalents:

Вільний кисень; сприятливий для розвитку; види бактерій; паличкоподібні бактерії; вигнуті або у формі коми; спіралеподібна бактерія; поживні речовини; прикріпити до поверхні; впливати на здатність бактерій; розмножуватися та ділитися; збільшуватися у розмірі; процес поділу; подвоюватися кожні 2 хвилини; умови навколишнього середовища; слизова оболонка; галузь мікробіології; причина смерті людини; перетравлювати їжу.



Exercise 11. Complete the sentences:

1) Oxygen is unfavourable for … .

2) Vibrio is a slightly … bacterium.

3) Rod-shaped bacteria are called … .

4) … is a skeleton contained within a cell’s cytoplasm.

5) … is a bacterial disease of the lungs.

6) Pathogens are the microorganisms that can ….

7) Bacteria are used in medicine for … .

8) … is a branch of microbiology.


Exercise 12. Put questions to the underlined words:

1) Frequently bacteria may secrete chemicals into their environment.

2) Disinfectants must be used to kill bacteria.

3) Robert Koch was allowed to work on cholera and tuberculosis.

4) Bacteria were first observed by Antonie van Leeuwenhoek in 1676.

5) The bacterial secretion will be able to act as enzymes.

6) Bacteria could grow and divide extremely rapidly.

7) The process of division depends on the conditions of the environment.

8) Scientists might use different techniques to promote the growth of bacteria.

Exercise 13. Read and translate the sentences. Put the predicates into the Future:

1) Usually bacteria can be seen under the electron microscope.

2) The patient with a broken arm might walk.

3) Chlamidia may be involved in coronary heart disease.

4) Pneumococci can cause pneumonia.

5) Bacterial infections may be treated with antibiotics.

6) The patient can gain his body weight in some months.

7) In future the patient must avoid stress and physical exertion.

8) Bacteria can have very different morphologies and metabolisms.

Exercise 14. Translate into English using Modal verbs and their equivalents:

1) Студенти повинні регулярно відвідувати анатомічний зал.

2) - Можна увійти? Вибачте, я запізнився.

3) Вчора черговий лікар зміг швидко зупинити кровотечу.

4) Хворий повинен був приймати ліки тричі на день.

5) Вибачте, я повинен йти, вже дуже пізно.

6) Патогенні мікроорганізми здатні спричиняти важкі захворювання.

7) Завтра хворий зможе (йому дозволять) вийти на прогулянку.

8) Вся інформація про хворого повинна бути записана в історії хвороби.

Exercise 15. Explain the terms:microorganisms; bacteria; bacteriology.


Exercise 16. Make up the situation using the following word-combinations:

aerobic and anaerobic microorganisms

bacterial species

to increases in size

pathogenic bacteria

bacterial metabolism and genetics




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