Getting a Home Bacteria Project Started
Suggestions to Help
get Your Project Going Quickly
By Harold Eddleman, Ph. D.
This page, when completed, will outline a path you can follow to developing
an outstanding bacteria science project which would surely win a top place
in your science fair, or a years long hobby which would surely win you
a science scholarship.
Don't fail to read the safety pages and discuss safety
with your parents and teachers. The projects in this web site vary in risk.
Some are totally safe because you eat these bacteria everyday, but you
do have to handle them carefully so that they do not become contaminated
with disease producing organisms (pathogens). The best rule of safety is
read widely so you are likely to spot danger early.
If you choose to work with common organisms which are used in making
food, materials will be available in the home and safety concerns will
be greatly reduced. The bacteria which are used to produce butter, cheese,
and dairy products or the yeasts and bacteria used to produce bread are
good choices for the beginner.
Scan The Sections to get an Introduction to this Site
Pages B001 to B019
These pages will give you an overall view of what bacteria are and how
they fit into the web of living things. If you like science, you will find
some of these pages very interesting. You will learn much to make you study
of later pages more understandable.
- B001 - Letter to the Beginning
Student - Read before trying any of these experiments.
- B002 - Letter to Parents - Read
before giving your child permission to try these experiments.
- B003 - What's New in these Bacteria
Pages during January 1998
- B004 - What are Bacteria? A short
- B005 - Bacteria: Friends or Foes?
- B006 - Believe it or Not. Strange,
but true facts about bacteria. Too new to be in books!
- B00? - More basic information about bacteria
B020 - B039 Starting your Home Microbiology Lab
This is a series of Experiments. If you wish you can develop
one or more of the pages into a nice science project. Instead of buying
a science kit, you use these pages to develop your own home science lab.
In the first experiment, you can try growing bread yeast on various carbohydates.
The main method for identification of bacteria and yeasts is to determine
which carbohydrates they can use for food.
- B021 - Your first microbiology experiment: does
yeast grow in corn syrup, sugar, or starch?
- B022 - Make E-Broth from ground beef on the
kitchen stove - a meat broth medium.
- B023 - Dispense your media: stabs, slants, plates,
deeps: aerobic and anaerobic media
- B024 - Sterilize and store your media: use pressure
cooker or steamer; store dust-free
- B025 - Make a loop and streak gelatin or agar
plates to isolate colonies
- B026 - Start your own pure cultures collection.
A good way to begin learning the genera.
- B027 - Reuse plastic plates and trays. Experiments
using bacterial lawns
- B028 - Milk media. Many bacteria grow better
in milk than in meat broth.
- B029 - Make media from potato, carrot, tomato,
rice, hay, grass: slices, plugs, and liquid
- B030 - Stock Cultures Media - as used at Indiana
Biolab <== READ THIS PAGE
- B031 - Chemolithotropic media: rocks and sulfur; mud jars.
- B0?? - Simple diagnostic media which can be made at home.
- B0?? - More about anaerobic bacteria: media and methods for culturing
- B0?? - Introduction to enrichment and selective media for specific
genera of bacteria
- B038 - How to count bacteria, plus sub
pages on statistics, equipment, simple to complex
- reports by students doing microbiology expriments at home; send yours
- B039 - Summary of tools, equipment, and media
for your Home Micro Lab. Incomplete
B030 - B059 Standard Methods used in Microbiology
Some of these experiments require some purchases such as agar, tryptone,
phenol red, petri plates, sugars, ferrous sulfate,
- B031 - What are agar, tryptone,
yeast extract, and the other ingredients used in media?
- B0?? - Preparing professional media from tryptone, yeast extract, agar
grades, origin of
- B0?? - Formula for professional media
- B0?? - Formula for diagnostic media
- B0?? - Formulae for bacteriological stains
- B0?? - Streaking plates to isolate bacteria and obtain pure cultures
- B0?? - Making slide mounts and using microscope
- B0?? - Building and maintaining a collection of bacteria generally
- B0?? - ?building equipment for advanced work, laminar flow hoods, safety
- B0?? - working with strict anaerobic such as rumen bacteria and methane
B060 - Experiments: Effect of environmental factors on the growth of
- B061 - Oxygen requirements of
- B062 - Optimum temperature for
some common bacteria: 4C, room temp, 37C, 55C
- B063 - Osmotic pressure (salt)
of medium and bacteia
- B06? - pH effect on bacterial growth
- B064 - Nutritional requirements of bacteria
- B065 - Carbohydrates used by bacteria - diagnostic assays
- B0?? - Carbon sources used by bacteria
- B0?? - Nitrogen sources used by bacteria
- B000 - Disinfectants action on bacteria
- B000 - Killing of bacteria by UV, heat, and agents is a logarithmic
- B000 - chemo- and organo- tropic nutrition
- B000 - Bacteriophages (viruses that attack bacteria)
- B000 - Bacteriocins that kill bacteria
B090 - The classification of Bacteria: main groups, families, genera,
- B095 - Short list of distinctive
Genera of bacteria; good student should know these
B100 - Food Bacteriology: Experiments
with the bacteria you eat every day
- B10? - Making foods by selective fermentations of cabbage, cucumbers,
peanut, sorghum, tea fungus, drinks, soybean, breads, cover most primitive
fermented foods. `
- B10? - Improvement of primitive fermented foods by pure culture methods
- B120 - Isolation of pure cultures of bacteria from human foods by students
- B121 - Isolating and using pure cultures of bacteria in production
of fermented foods.
- B122 - Isolation of Brevibacterium
linens from Limburger Cheese at home by a beginner.
B200 - Isolation and study of
bacteria from nature with descriptions of family, genus, species
- B203 - Isolation and characteristics
of Vibrio phosphoreum, glows brightly.
- Eventually dozens of bacteria will be covered in detail in this section.
B800 - Medical bacteriology; move
pathogenic discussions here - not ready (incomplete)
- Introduction to bacteria pathogenic to humans- Required reading for
- B801 - First micro safety page for beginners - required reading for
- B802 - Safety page for High School and Begin College students
- B??? - lists of pathogenic bacteria class 1,2,3, 0=no report of disease
- B0?? - The pathogenic bacteria: disease causing bacteria, plants and
animals, microbiol. safety
B900 - Bacterial genetics
There is no need to go out and buy lots of equipment. Begin with Home
Micro Lab by making media from common kitchen foods and isolate some
Can lids, or flat bottles can replace glass petri plates. Bottles can
serve as culture tubes, or your teacher may loan you culture tubes and
supplies. If not try a hospital, they throw away lots of items you can
use and if autoclaved they are perfectly safe. Before you trouble a hospital
for gifts, do a few week's work at home and prove that you are really interested
and planning to work hard.
First installed January 1998 Revision
#5 1998 Feb 3 email@example.com
Written by Harold Eddleman, Ph. D., President, Indiana Biolab, 14045 Huff
St., Palmyra IN 47164
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