I need help

Errol E.S.Kwan at massey.ac.nz
Wed Mar 15 17:22:41 EST 2000

Judging by the question I would say that you probably couldn't follow
this answer.  

>Best bet is some flavor of growth media like LB.

LB stands for Luria broth, it's a basic solution that allows the
growth of most micro-organisms.  I would suggest that if you use this
that you make it into an agar plate, this is done by adding some agar
into the solution and poured into a petri dish, when it cools it
solidifies and you can see colonies growing on the surface, then from
this you can look at the colonies for their shape colour and other
physical features, and look at a sample of each under a microscope to
look at the cells.

>Depends upon the strain of bacteria.
>That depends on where you grow it.  If you put a plate of LB in your
>bed room, bathroom, dining room, outside, etc bacteria will begin to
>grow on it as they are everywhere.  If you are doing this in a 'clean'
>lab setting you will need to innoculate the media with bacteria.

If you expose your plates to the air, then you should incubate the
plates after exposure at about 25 degrees celcius as this is
considered to be room temperature.  This will allow microbes in the
room to grow.  I would grow them overnight and see what the growth is
like, you don't want growth of one organism to cover the entire plate
so you can't see any other colonies.  If there isn't much growth then
leave it another night.  You'll want to seal the lids on the plate as
well, as if anything pathogenic grows you don't want to expose
yourself to it and make yourself sick.

>First you will need to identify the different species of bacteria you
>have.  There SOPs for this and commercial kits you can buy as well.
>Once you have that, count up the number of colonies each type of
>bacteria has.

You probably won't have access to these sorts of kits and may have
some difficulty buying them, but try to get them anyway.

>>How do I figure out the kinds that grew? 
>See above.

You could also look at them under the microscope and examine the
individual cells and try to identify them this way, along with the
physical features of the colony.  I would suggest that you try to
identify them this was as you will get more out of the experience than
just reading what the testing kit tells you.  

>>Are they any books or websites that can help me out?
>O.K., a wuick search on 'ANY' search engine will bring up plenty of
>sites.  Checking in at you school's library will reveal plenty of
>microbiology texts/journals.  Have you tried your class text book?!?!?
>Just out of curiosity what level class is this that give syou such
>pitiful instruction?  Anyone worried that you might infect yourself
>with something that you would be better off without?
I would like to know you class level as well and your age in case your
education system is the american type.  I'm also not sure what sort of
microbiology text and journals your school would have.  You should
consult your science teacher as she/he may have some books and should
explain about making up culture media.

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