Curtis Okolovitch's Internship, Summer 2013 - Part 8
Now that I am entering the last few weeks of my internship, I’m spending the rest of my time tying up some loose ends and hoping to perfect the extraction method Kala and I worked on this summer. This past week I have extracted the hydrocarbons from the last of my cultures and started to analyze the total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH) in these samples using Gas Chromatography. If all goes well, we could have some conclusive data on biodegradation of hydrocarbons using this new technique.
Since I do not have much exciting news this week, I thought I would introduce you all to some other members of the Kostka Lab working on the oil spill. In the photo on the right are is Will Overholt (right) and Nicandro Mandujano (left). Will is a graduate student at Georgia Tech studying for a Doctorate degree in Bioinformatics and Nicandro is an undergraduate from Elon University in the Research Experience for Undergraduate (REU) program. Together, they are combining genomic with geochemical data in order to analyze the response of the microbial community to the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. They have been using molecular techniques such as qPCR to examine the 16s SSU rRNA genes found in their samples to identify the key taxonomic clades in these marine microbial communities.