Going on Microbial Safari: Identifying Microbes and Examining Their Functional Ability


Project Description

Our goal is to introduce students to the field of microbial ecology by having them learn how microbes are affected by their environment and vice versa. We want them to have the ability to make this project their own by having them select an unidentified microbial genome of their choice from an online database, figure out the potential taxonomy of that organism by reconstructing its evolutionary history, and then figuring out what it is capable of doing in the environment by examining the function of its genes. We hope to show students the diversity of single-celled life on earth, and give them the broad tools to explore this diversity on their own.