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Project 49: Elucidating the effect of antibacterial agents against Pseudomonas aeruginosa in aerobic and anaerobic conditions

Suitable Majors

Earth Science and Engineering, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Biological Engineering, Molecular Biology

Research Area

Environmental Microbial Safety and Biotechnology Lab

Internship Description

Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an opportunistic pathogen that is ubiquitously present in most ecosystems. This bacterium secretes alginate, pel and psl carbohydrates to form the main constituent of its biofilm matrix. The biofilm matrix in turns plays a protective role, and aids the bacterium in its survival against the antibacterial effect of heavy metals, disinfectants and antibiotics. Through the use of P. aeruginosa mutants that are knocked out of specific carbohydrate-producing genes, we aim to elucidate the role of each carbohydrate type in conferring resistance to the antibacterial agent. Furthermore, we aim to determine if the genotypic and phenotypic responses of P. aeruginosa would differ in anaerobic and aerobic conditions.


We will provide the guidance but some background knowledge on concentration calculations, pipetting and cell culture would be preferred.


Results from this study will facilitate future efforts on eradicating or delaying the occurrence of this bacterium in instances such as biofouling of engineered systems and the colonization of the airway of cystic fibrosis patients.

Other Comments

​Internship dates: 19 May to 26 July or 23 June to 29 August or 7 July to 14 September


Biological and Environmental Sciences and Engineering

Faculty Name

Peiying Hong