Presentation Title

Screening of Cave Microorganisms for Antimicrobial and Enzymatic Activities

Format of Presentation

Poster to be presented Friday March 31, 2017

Abstract

The increase in antibiotic resistance among bacteria has led to a surge in research aimed at discovering new and effective antibiotics. Due to the misuse and overuse of antibiotics, many strains of bacteria have evolved into multidrug resistant (MDR) strains. These MDR strains are difficult to treat as commercially available antibiotics such as penicillins and cephalosporins are often ineffective. Due to the recent push to discover new antibiotics, microorganisms from extreme habitats are being screened for antimicrobial properties. This study aims to find potential candidates that display antimicrobial properties against nine test organisms. Microorganisms were collected from seven cave swabs in New Brunswick Canada. Over 150 Bacteria, yeast and fungi were successfully isolated using Wallersteing Nutrient Agar, Sabouraud agar, R2A agar supplemented with biphenyl, delvocid, and chloramphenicol. Biphenyl and delvoid were used to inhibit yeast and mould respectively, while chloramphenicol was used to prevent bacterial growth. The isolation was done at 8oC and the incubation periods varied from three days to three weeks. Isolated microbes were screened for antimicrobial activity against various strains of bacteria and yeast including MDR microbes such as E.coli15-318 (MDR), E.coli15-102 (MDR), E.coli15-124 (MDR), Staphylococcus aureus MRSA-43300, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Serrratina marscecens and Candida albicans along with non-resistant strains of E.coli and S.aureus. If potential candidates are found, further studies on their identity and testing for enzymatic activity such as chitinase, β-1,3 gluconase, β-1,3-1,6-gluconase and proteases will be performed. By performing these preliminary screenings, baseline data about these microorganisms and their potential can be collected and used for further research benefiting pharmaceutical and biotechnological applications.

Department

Biological Sciences

Faculty Advisor

Naowarat Cheeptham

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Screening of Cave Microorganisms for Antimicrobial and Enzymatic Activities

The increase in antibiotic resistance among bacteria has led to a surge in research aimed at discovering new and effective antibiotics. Due to the misuse and overuse of antibiotics, many strains of bacteria have evolved into multidrug resistant (MDR) strains. These MDR strains are difficult to treat as commercially available antibiotics such as penicillins and cephalosporins are often ineffective. Due to the recent push to discover new antibiotics, microorganisms from extreme habitats are being screened for antimicrobial properties. This study aims to find potential candidates that display antimicrobial properties against nine test organisms. Microorganisms were collected from seven cave swabs in New Brunswick Canada. Over 150 Bacteria, yeast and fungi were successfully isolated using Wallersteing Nutrient Agar, Sabouraud agar, R2A agar supplemented with biphenyl, delvocid, and chloramphenicol. Biphenyl and delvoid were used to inhibit yeast and mould respectively, while chloramphenicol was used to prevent bacterial growth. The isolation was done at 8oC and the incubation periods varied from three days to three weeks. Isolated microbes were screened for antimicrobial activity against various strains of bacteria and yeast including MDR microbes such as E.coli15-318 (MDR), E.coli15-102 (MDR), E.coli15-124 (MDR), Staphylococcus aureus MRSA-43300, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Serrratina marscecens and Candida albicans along with non-resistant strains of E.coli and S.aureus. If potential candidates are found, further studies on their identity and testing for enzymatic activity such as chitinase, β-1,3 gluconase, β-1,3-1,6-gluconase and proteases will be performed. By performing these preliminary screenings, baseline data about these microorganisms and their potential can be collected and used for further research benefiting pharmaceutical and biotechnological applications.