Mentor: Dr. Andrew Ogram
College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
"I applied to the University Scholars Program in hopes of not only receiving opportunities available to those performing research (such as the chance to present and learn from others in similar areas) but to also meet other students who are just as determined with their own projects. This year, as my own research projects develops and continues, I hope to find positive results as well as gain more knowledge in the area of Microbiology."
Microbiology and Cell Science
UF Honors Program
College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Scholarship, Fall 2011 - present
CALS Upper Division Honors Program
Delta Nu Zeta (Service Sorority - founding member)
Collegiate Health Service Corps.
Golden Key National Honor Society
- Shadowing in pediatric neurology clinic
Hobbies and Interests
- Exploring Gainesville
Detection and Isolation of Activity and Syntrophic Acetate-Oxidizing Bacteria along a Nutrient Gradient in the Florida Everglades
The Florida Everglades is historically limited in phosphorus; however, runoff from the Everglades Agricultural Area has resulted in a gradient in phosphorus and sulfate concentrations running into the interior of the northern Everglades. A detailed understanding of the impacts of P- and S-enrichment on methanogenesis is therefore critical to our understanding of greenhouse gas emissions. On a global basis, most methane is produced directly from acetate via acetoclastic pathways. Preliminary data indicated that U3 follows this paradigm; however, most methane from F1 is produced via hydrogenotrophic methanogensis, an alternative pathway. This indicates that nutrient enrichment in Water Conservation Area 2-A is responsible for shifting that fundamental pathway. We hypothesize that syntrophic acetate oxidation (SAO) is responsible for much of the hydrogen driving methanogenesis in F1. Our objective is to isolate syntrophic acetate oxidizers from the soil along the nutrient gradient in WCA 2-A, including a site previously exposed to high levels of nutrients (Impacted - F1), a transition site (Transition - F4), and a site not impacted by nutrient additions (Unimpacted - U3). In the current study, we will identify active acetate SAO by using a combined approach that includes isolation of target group organisms and DNA-stable isotope probing with 13C-labled and unlabeled acetate. The Everglades soils will be incubated anaerobically at both 23 and 37 degrees Celsius with either 13C-labled or unlabeled acetate as the sole carbon and energy source. The results obtained from this study will provide a better understanding of how SAOs control methane production along with nutrient gradients in the Everglades.