Discovering Novel Antibiotics: How microbes in our soil are solving the Resistance Crisis

Institution: Carleton University (Tory Building 431)
Category: Faculty of Science
Language: English

Course Description

In this mini course, students will conduct a student-driven, international research project, called Tiny Earth, aimed at solving the antibiotic resistance crisis. The world health organization has declared antimicrobial resistance one of the top global public health threats facing our population. The misuse and overuse of antibiotics drive pathogenic bacteria to develop resistance to these drugs such that they no longer work and thus scientists are on the search for new antibiotics to treat emerging resistant infections. Students will spend most of the time in the lab learning and applying basic microbiology lab techniques such as aseptic transfer, culturing, microscopy and staining, biochemical testing and antibiotic sensitivity testing, to isolate and identify potential antibiotic producing bacteria from the soil. Classroom activities will complement the lab portion such that students will gain an understanding of microbiology and of the theory behind the techniques they will be using. In the end, students will have an understanding of bacterial characteristics, how they cause infection and how scientists identify new treatments to combat these infectious diseases. They will also have made a contribution to global efforts to solve the resistance crisis.

Students must bring: a lock to keep your items safe in a locker, a notebook and pencil to use in the lab, long pants and closed-toed shoes in addition to a mask to enter the lab.