2012 Student Research Conference:
25th Annual Student Research Conference

Lifestyle Influence on Bacterial Flora of the Oropharynx
Broderick W. Olson*, David Morris, and Chelsea Clay
Dr. Marc Benson, Faculty Mentor

The human throat is colonized with various strains of symbiotic bacteria; some are commensalistic while others are parasitic. The purpose of this study seeks to correlate the type of oropharynx bacteria (pathogen versus non-pathogen) with the lifestyle of the subject (exercise, diet, sleep, alcohol/tobacco use, etc.) Our hypothesis is that students who engage in active and healthy lifestyles will have a lower number of bacterial oropharynx pathogens. Student volunteer lifestyle habits were evaluated by use of a detailed survey, and their oropharynx microbiota characterized utilizing biochemical assays, selective medium, and colony morphological characteristics. As the oropharynx is colonized by dozens of bacterial species, nine species were selected for identification: Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Streptococcus pneumonia, Streptococcus mutans, Streptococcus salivarus, Haemophilus influenzae, Corynebacterium spp, Enterococcus faecalis, and Neisseria spp. This data could give insight into how a healthy lifestyle influences the amount and types of microbes that colonize the human throat.

Keywords: bacteria, pathogen versus non-pathogen, oropharynx, lifestyles


Presentation Type: Poster

Session: 200-9
Location: Georgian Room - SUB
Time: 3:30

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