Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2019

Document Type


Type of Thesis

Departmental Honors


Integrative Physiology

First Advisor

Joel Kralj

Second Advisor

Christopher Link

Third Advisor

Alena Grabowski


Bacterial populations produce a small number of persister cells that remain tolerant to multidrug exposure by becoming metabolically dormant. This inquiry focuses on investigating metabolic gene expression levels in persisters to determine potential predictors of bacterial persistence. Strains from the E. Coli Promoter library were imaged using single cell microscopy, and gene expression levels were measured with the integrated reporter GFP. Persister cells were isolated using ofloxacin. Results indicate that bacterial cells that survive antibiotic exposure exhibit filamentous growth before dividing. Resumption of normal growth morphology is accompanied by increased proteolytic activity in daughter cells, however more investigation is required to ascertain the identity of the persister cells.

Included in

Cell Biology Commons