Comparison and Characterization of Ralstonia picketti Copper Resistance with Soil Bacteria

Edmond Talbott Bellarmine University
Faculty Sponsor(s): Joanne Dobbins Bellarmine University
A persistent contaminant was observed in our lab during the summer of 2016. It was isolated and characterized using the protocol of phenotypic analysis of Biolog GEN III Microplate™. This contaminant was determined to be Ralstonia pickettii, a common species of soil bacteria that is resistant to antibiotics and high copper concentrations. The extent of the copper resistance of Ralstonia pickettii was measured by culturing on a copper gradient ranging from 0.5 mM to 4 mM using a spectrometer. When Ralstonia pickettii was revived the following semester, additional bacteria species were isolated from the stock culture. These five bacteria are likely soil bacteria and will be compared with Ralstonia pickettii in order to see if they have similar characteristics regarding antibiotic and copper tolerance. If the contaminants show similar profiles, it would suggest the possibility of soil bacteria having similar characteristics due to their similar environmental profile. Another characteristic suggested from literature states that Ralstonia pickettii has either an extracellular mechanism or epigenetic mechanism that allows it to exist in the presence of a variety of heavy metals. The importance of biofilm formation to Ralstonia pickettii for its survival in heavy metal concentrations will be examined.
Oral Presentation

When & Where

12:30 PM
Gallahue Hall 102