Antibiotic resistant infections are an imminent threat to human health. Could these bacteria be lurking in environments as pristine as Rocky Mountain National Park? What factors might cause them to be in pristine environments? This course seeks to offer insight into these questions and the implications of such research.
Students will be introduced to basic microbiological field and laboratory techniques. The course will focus on collecting and analyzing soil and water samples for antibiotic resistant bacteria. In the field, soil and water collection techniques will be taught while gathering samples along a human impact gradient. In the lab, samples will be prepared and analyzed to detect antibiotic resistant bacteria. This class will involve handling of potential BSL-2 pathogens. Proper safety techniques will be demonstrated and maintained, but every student must abide by protocol in order to protect themselves and others.