The Department of Microbiology (the first name of the Department) was founded in 1959. The first head of the Department was Professor Gelberg Samuel Iosifovich, the founder of the scientific school whose scientific research was concentrated on the mycobacteria – the pathogens causing tuberculosis.

In 2000 the Department of Microbiology, Virology and Immunology was named after Gelberg S.I. to commemorate the achievements of this prominent scientist. Main research fields developed at the Department were microbiological diagnosis of tuberculosis, immunology and specific prophylaxis of tuberculosis as well as mycobacteriophages – the last field was main area of research of Professor Kosobutski Leonid Antonovich who was the head of the Department in 1973-1978.

From 1998 until present time the Department is headed by associate professor A.I. Zhmakin. Significant scientific achievements have been made under his leadership in study of circadian rhythms in microorganisms, intestinal dysbiosis, the interaction of bacterial populations within the same habitat, as well as in study of immunological changes typical for dysbiotic infringements.