Event Title

T3-E: Introducing Biochemistry and Cellular Biology to Chemical Engineering Students by Cultivating a Bacterial Pathogen in a Bioreactor

Location

Dolphin

Start Date

5-3-2018 3:45 PM

Description

Maximizing student retention and matriculation in STEM degree programs requires the use of active and collaborative learning techniques and exposure to enriching educational experiences. Studies have shown that interactive instructional methods enhance student engagement and increase student performance overall. The goal of this work was to install a bioreactor lab station in the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga’s chemical engineering laboratory, thereby improving student engagement and success through exposure to state-of-the-art research methods in biochemistry and cellular biology. The bioreactor station has been installed and deployed in the junior and senior level chemical engineering laboratory courses, and is also currently being used in undergraduate and graduate level research projects. Initial experiments have focused on studying the bacterial pathogen Vibrio cholerae in collaboration with the UTC Department of Biology, Geology, and Environmental Science. The work presented in this paper details the chosen apparatus and its capabilities, the results of the students’ work with initial feasibility trials using Vibrio cholerae samples and the bioreactor, and how we intend to further integrate innovative bioreactor experiments into engineering curricula and outreach programs. The chosen equipment allows students to monitor and control temperature, pH, and dissolved oxygen concentration, as well as agitation control and real-time sampling capability. During initial feasibility trials, students found that Vibrio could be grown in the bioreactor and that data such as growth, membrane permeability, and motility could be collected in real-time over a range of environmental conditions (e.g. temperature, pH, salinity). Future work will be focused on improving the capabilities of this apparatus and expanding the slate of experiments for further integration into engineering curricula and outreach programs.

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Mar 5th, 3:45 PM

T3-E: Introducing Biochemistry and Cellular Biology to Chemical Engineering Students by Cultivating a Bacterial Pathogen in a Bioreactor

Dolphin

Maximizing student retention and matriculation in STEM degree programs requires the use of active and collaborative learning techniques and exposure to enriching educational experiences. Studies have shown that interactive instructional methods enhance student engagement and increase student performance overall. The goal of this work was to install a bioreactor lab station in the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga’s chemical engineering laboratory, thereby improving student engagement and success through exposure to state-of-the-art research methods in biochemistry and cellular biology. The bioreactor station has been installed and deployed in the junior and senior level chemical engineering laboratory courses, and is also currently being used in undergraduate and graduate level research projects. Initial experiments have focused on studying the bacterial pathogen Vibrio cholerae in collaboration with the UTC Department of Biology, Geology, and Environmental Science. The work presented in this paper details the chosen apparatus and its capabilities, the results of the students’ work with initial feasibility trials using Vibrio cholerae samples and the bioreactor, and how we intend to further integrate innovative bioreactor experiments into engineering curricula and outreach programs. The chosen equipment allows students to monitor and control temperature, pH, and dissolved oxygen concentration, as well as agitation control and real-time sampling capability. During initial feasibility trials, students found that Vibrio could be grown in the bioreactor and that data such as growth, membrane permeability, and motility could be collected in real-time over a range of environmental conditions (e.g. temperature, pH, salinity). Future work will be focused on improving the capabilities of this apparatus and expanding the slate of experiments for further integration into engineering curricula and outreach programs.