Discovering Antibiotics from UD's Soil
The discovery of antibiotics has helped humans survive many diseases that were once deadly. But with the overuse of antibiotics in the medical field, some “superbugs” have evolved resistance to multiple antibiotics we utilize. The Tiny Earth Network and Small World Initiative have started a coalition of undergraduate students to help discover new antibiotics from different soils around the world. Over the past semester, I have been doing research to find microbes from soil outside of the Adele Center that has antimicrobial effects on known pathogens. This work is important because it could lead to the discovery of new antibiotics that can kill pathogens affecting humans. The bacteria that was collected was tested against the pathogens Acinetobacter baylyi and Enterococcus raffinosus to determine how efficient the antimicrobial properties were. Gram stains and biochemical tests were then used to help identify and characterize the bacteria we were working with. From there, I isolated antibiotic compounds and tested them against pathogens and eukaryotic cells. Overall, this work helps to support the Tiny Earth Network and Small World Initiative and will, hopefully, help to resolve the antibiotic crisis we are currently having.
Erica Marie Rinehart, Yvonne Y Sun
Primary Advisor's Department
Stander Symposium poster
"Discovering Antibiotics from UD's Soil" (2019). Stander Symposium Posters. 1539.