2008 Student Research Conference:
21st Annual Student Research Conference

Characterization of E. coli in Two Water Reservoirs
Ignatius C. Onyewadume
Dr. Cynthia Cooper, Faculty Mentor

DNA fingerprints from fecal bacteria can be used to match different strains of Escherichia coli with their respective warm blooded animal hosts and ultimately, determine the host species that contribute to high levels of E. coli a body of water. E. coli contamination of source water was studied in two reservoirs that supply drinking water to the City of Kirksville, La Plata, and rural residents in two counties (about 24,000 people). Water samples from Forest Lake and Hazel Creek Lake were collected in June and July of 2007. Chemical indicators of water quality included dissolved oxygen, nitrate, phosphorus, pH, conductivity and turbidity. EPA Method 1604 was used to isolate candidate bacteria by filtration and 82% of the isolates were confirmed to be E. coli by biochemical assays. Polymerase chain reaction as described by Rademaker et al (2004) was used to generate DNA fingerprints.

Keywords: Characterization, E. coli, Water, Reservoirs, DNA fingerprints, Polymerse Chain reaction, EPA Method 1604, Forest Lake and Hazel Creek

Topic(s):Biology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 2-3
Location: VH 1432
Time: 8:45

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