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Undergraduate Research

StudentsResearch Project: Identification of the Gene ESBL and Bacteria cells from Cape Fear Hospital

Researchers: Byron Curry, Kimber Kegley, Jamie Gathing, Nicole Joyner, April Brown 

Interview questions:

1) How did this research come about? The ESBL gene came about in the 1980’s, the spread of betalactam resistance, has been linked to the presence of Extended Spectrum Betalactamases (ESBL)

2) Does it cost money? Yes

Then how is the research funded?  Various
3) How long is the procedure? Can take up to 2 hrs.

4) Who benefits from your research? An average person, because if there able to find the ESBL gene and identify it one can then establish antibiotics and make prescriptions/drug.
5) What will be the outcome? That the ESBL genes were detected in outbreak strains.
6) How many steps are there in researching your goals?

  • Kirby Bauer, E- test – this step confirms the ESBL activity, and its purpose is the measure of how resistant strains are to antibiotics.
  • Plasma DNA Isolation & PCR- this step confirms the presence of ESBL genes.  The gene to identify is located on the plasma, so when you isolated the plasma you can isolate the gene.

7) What equipment is used for the steps?

  • Centrifuge, micropipette
  • Gel electro phroresis tray – used for DNA gel
  • Kirby- Bauer test – used for various antibiotics example: beta lactam antibiotics
  • Incubation

8) What is the goal? To examine outbreak strands, obtained from Cape Fear Valley Hospital, for the presence of ESBL genes.

StudentsBy:  Denise Gonzalez

Interviewed:  Jessica Ross 
What is your research based on? My research is based on the hypothesis that Molinate inhibits Acetyl cholinesterase activity in neuroblastoma cells; thus resulting in a build up of acetylcholine.
Why did you select this research? I selected this research because I took Toxicology last spring and it sparked my interest in related fields.  I also had experience in Tissue Culture, so it only made sense.

What have you learned while doing this research? I’ve learned that you can NEVER be too careful when it comes to contamination. Anything can cause contamination.
How do you feel this research is beneficial? Our lab is currently focusing on Acetyl cholinesterase activity in a neuroblastoma cell line treated in the presence of the pesticide Diazanon or the herbicide Molanate. 
What advantages and disadvantages are there in your research? Conducting research is the advantages.  Many students don’t get the opportunity. One disadvantage is the time involved, especially if the experiment doesn’t work.
What things would you change in this research? I wouldn’t change anything.

What do you like most about doing this research? The thing that I like the most about this research is that I get to do my own project. If my results aren’t correct, then it’s no one’s fault but my own.

What do you like least about doing this research? The thing that I like least is the time that is needed. Research is very time consuming.

What traits do you have that are good for this research? I am a very diligent and patient person. I am also a perfectionist, so everything has to be right.

What types of experience do you have? The summer following my freshman year, I had a research internship at the Baylor College of Medicine. This past summer I had a research internship of the Medical University of South Carolina.

Who is your supervisor? My supervisor is Dr. Shirley Chao.

With whom have you worked in this project? I worked with Dr. Chao and my lab partner Reginald Cannody.

What did you find the most difficult thing to do in your research? The most difficult thing to do was prevent contamination.

How difficult was your research from a scale of 1 to 10? 7.5

When did you begin working in this research? I began working on this research at the beginning of the semester.

How much time do you dedicate to this research?  (Per day, week, and hour)
Dedicated around 10 hours per week, 5 hours for days for this research.

Where did you do your research? The research was done in room 214 in the Lyons Science Bldg at Fayetteville State University.

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