Since the space environment has caused a change in bacteria growth and activity, it is important to recalculate the MIC (Minimum Inhibitory Concentration) in order to inhibit growth of the bacteria of..
Since the space environment has caused a change in bacteria growth and activity, it is important to recalculate the MIC (Minimum Inhibitory Concentration) in order to inhibit growth of the bacteria of interest. The Minimum Inhibitory Concentration is the smallest dose required to effectively hinder the growth of a certain bacterium. Due to the metabolic changes, bacteria experiences in space, they have shown increased resistance to antibiotics. This past summer in the space microbiology laboratory at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, we compared the growth of Escherichia coli under gravity and microgravity conditions along with exposure a dose gradient of the antibiotic Nalidixic Acid. We used a microgravity simulation device called the EAGLESTAT to help simulate space conditions. Growth under microgravity conditions showed to have a shorter lag period than the control (growth under gravity conditions). Because of this difference in growth period, we are able to hypothesize that E. coli will in fact need a higher dose of antibiotic to inhibit growth in space. After conducting our experiments, we were able to conclude that E.coli were able to grow in higher concentrations of antibiotics whenever they were grown in simulated microgravity. This difference suggests that bacteria do undergo metabolic changes while growing in space. The data that we have collected also show the antibiotic inhibiting growth for a period of time and then regrowth occurring. This research can help us to evaluate the MIC that is required for space travel.