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Natalie Moreno

Identification of Novel Microorganisms and Nitrogen Fixing Organisms in Central Pennsylvania

Natalie Moreno ’22
Emily Stowe, Maria Estevez
Faculty Mentor(s):
Emily Stowe, Biology Department
Funding Source:
Kalman Fund – Biomedical Education

In this project we sought to identify novel organisms from various locations throughout the Bucknell Natural Area. Bacteria were isolated on minimal media (lacking ammonia and nitrate) supplemented with a small amount of yeast extract and sucrose or mannitol. After repeated quadrant streaking, two novel microorganisms were isolated. PCR amplification of the 16S rRNA gene followed by sequencing of the PCR product indicates that one is of the Pantoea genus and the other of the Paenibacillus genus. Once the organisms were isolated, metabolic analyses were conducted using the BIOLOG GenIII plates. We will present the metabolic analysis as well as the results of annotating the genomes of these two organisms. In a second part of this experiment, the community characteristics of the soil samples were assessed using BIOLOG Ecoplates and community DNA was used to assess nitrogen fixing capability by PCR amplification using the nifK and nifH genes.

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