Posted by: loungekitten | March 16, 2009

Samples From Microbiology

I said that I’d post my pictures from the lab, and here they are!

Face and Axillary Growth Plate

Face and Axillary Growth Plate

The colonies on the left side of the growth plate represent a sample from my face.  The stuff growing on the right side is from my axillary area.  I analyzed the bacteria from both of these samples and both were Staphylococcus aureus strains.  Staphylococcus aureus is normally found on your skin, and you want it there.  What you don’t want there is MRSA, or methicilin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus on your skin, or in your body for that matter.

This is the second growth plate I made. I did not use any of the bacteria from these two areas for lab analysis.

Foot and Umbilical Growth Plate

Foot and Umbilical Growth Plate

The area on the left side of the plate is from my foot.  Like everyone else, I grew fungus.  And the umbilical area sample is actually mixed bacteria, and it at least has Staphylococcus aureus.

Here is the other thing I love to do in lab:  DNA fingerprinting.  First, we follow a PCR protocol on some of our bacteria.  Then, samples and loading dye are injected into the wells of an electrophoresis gel, an electric charge is applied to the gel (which is resting in a buffer solution) and the DNA migrates through the gel to a certain point in the gel depending (mostly) on the size of the DNA fragment.  Here is a copy of the gel from my laboratory midterm practical exam:

I have Shigella!

I have Shigella!

I got a good grade on my exam.  And really, I was just happy to be sitting at a table where nothing went wrong with the gel, for once.

Today, I think we get to sample bacteria from our respiratory tract.  Probably only a tonsil swab and a nasal swab.  And I’d imagine that we will grow the bacteria on blood agar to check for beta-hemolysis.  Just a guess!

In knitting news, I cast off for the double secret probation project and I am weaving in the ends.  I doubt that it will be finished in time for the recipient’s birthday.  I work and go to class tomorrow and I have a test on Wednesday, which is also the recipient’s birthday.  Oh, and also, it is very important to get in touch with another person that I know has the same birthday.  We are actually going out to dinner with the DSPP recipient on Thursday, so if I can hold off until then, I will, and perhaps it will be done.

And the most exciting thing I discovered – someone actually found my blog by searching for Rice Krispy treat sculptures.  I thought that was my own idea!



  1. […] Skin Bacteria I said I’d explain why I was wrong about my skin bacteria that I posted here.  I had forgotten we had one more lab session with some additional tests to classify our […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: