Belmont University Research Symposium (BURS)

Publication Date



Sciences and Mathematics, College of


Biology, Department of

BURS Faculty Advisor

Dr. Rebecca Adams

Presentation Type

Poster Presentation


Bacteriophages are viruses that infect bacteria cells. Bacteria, being the most abundant form of life on the planet, have an estimated ten to a hundred different types of bacteriophages that infect each species. Bacteriophages are everywhere on Earth, but the number of phages that have been identified is only a fraction of what are thought to exist. This project focuses on isolating and identifying phages that infect the bacterium Bacillus subtilis. B subtilis is a decomposition microbe commonly found in the soil. Therefore, our initial goal was to successfully isolate new B. subtilis bacteriophages from the soil. To that end, we have successfully isolated two novel phages, as determined by PCR analysis. The second goal of this project is to develop a robust protocol for the isolation of phages. We have determined that calcium ion concentration is likely an important component when enriching phages, and current analysis is being performed to test this.