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David Mitchell, Biology; Ashley Fink, Biology


The aim of this project was to isolate bacteria from unusual places, as these bacteria may have distinct adaptations to allow them to grow in challenging environments. Bacteria samples were obtained from the copper roof of Simons Hall in Collegeville, MN during November, 2018. These samples are of interest because bacterial growth is typically inhibited by copper. Once isolated and grown in culture, some of the collected bacterial samples displayed the ability to out-compete other bacterial samples. A polymerase chain reaction was used to identify bacteria samples 1 and 2 as Bacillus cereus and bacteria 4 as Bacillus pumilus. Growth curve experiments show that these isolates are capable of inhibiting other bacterial species. The results from our growth curve experiments depict similar inhibitory effects on unknown bacteria samples during all stages of the growth curve. Our results support previous studies which suggest Bacillus have the capability of inhibiting or killing other organisms within their environment.