Ecological Strategies of Bacteria and the Efficiency of Protein Synthesis

EPA Grant Number: U915221
Title: Ecological Strategies of Bacteria and the Efficiency of Protein Synthesis
Investigators: Dethlefsen, Leslie A.
Institution: Michigan State University
EPA Project Officer: Packard, Benjamin H
Project Period: August 1, 1997 through August 1, 2000
Project Amount: $102,000
RFA: STAR Graduate Fellowships (1997) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Fellowship - Microbiology , Academic Fellowships , Biology/Life Sciences


The objective of this research project is to investigate the relationship between the ecological strategies of bacteria and the efficiency of their protein synthesis system.


A phylogenetically diverse collection of soil bacteria has been isolated by a long-term plating technique. The strains chosen for this research are those forming colonies on agar media either early (within a few days), or late (after about 2 weeks). These groups represent contrasting ecological strategies. These strains will be grown at four different growth rates, and the macromolecular content of the cultures will be assayed to determine the efficiency of protein synthesis and how that efficiency changes with growth rate. The ability of bacterial cultures to rapidly increase their rate of protein synthesis in response to a sudden increase in nutrient availability also will be investigated, and correlated to the efficiency (or inefficiency) of protein synthesis at the slower initial growth rate. A potential relationship also will be examined between protein synthesis efficiency and the ability of strains to survive nutrient starvation.

Supplemental Keywords:

fellowship, ecological strategies, bacteria, protein synthesis, soil bacteria, growth rate.

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 1998
  • 1999
  • Final