Molecular Microbiology REU

Internship Mentor: Dr. Kirstie Francis

Our oceans are home to some of the most productive and biologically diverse ecosystems in the world. This biodiversity translates to incredible chemical diversity, and the intense competition for resources observed in marine ecosystems promotes the evolution of secondary metabolites, or marine natural products. The Marine Microbiology Program under Dr. Francis will focus on identifying bioactive natural products from marine microorganisms. NSF REU students in this program will be able to complete multidisciplinary projects involving microbiology, organic chemistry, and/or molecular biology. Responsibilities could include culturing activities to maintain and expand the Mote microbial library, development of microbial extracts, testing microbial extracts for a variety of biological activities, and purification of active compounds. Successful applicants should have completed coursework in microbiology or organic chemistry and demonstrate an interest in laboratory techniques. Prior lab experience is helpful but not required. Please note the majority of research activities are carried out at the Mote Aquaculture Park (MAP); a satellite site located in eastern Sarasota County, Florida, approximately 17 miles from the main laboratory.