Undergraduate Research & Scholarships

Satya Karri

Assessing Plant-Growth characteristics of Bacterial Strains and Viability in Biofertilizer

Mutualism is well characterized by the evolutionary relationship between a variety of legumes and their corresponding rhizobial bacteria. Determining which strains most benefit plant growth will help choose bacteria to use as cost-effective components of biofertilizers. These agricultural inputs can help developing countries ensure agricultural yields despite somewhat unfavorable environments. The project involves isolating and genetically sequencing several bacterial strains from Alfalfa, Soybean, and Chickpea plants. During this summer, we will experimentally evaluate the ability of isolated strains to solubilize phosphate and fix nitrogen. These traits will be used to decide which strains will be further analyzed in field tests to identify the best biofertilizer candidates.

Message To Sponsor

While I had planned on staying on Campus over the summer to take some classes for my minor, being able to perform additional research under the URAP Summer Research experience made my summer incredibly memorable. Not only was I able to make valuable progress in my lab, but I was also able to offset some of the living costs over the summer with help from the funding. Throughout the research, I was able to really engage myself throughout the day in our work. I was able to learn how to use alternate measurement systems such as Phosphate Solubilization Assays and HPLC. With all of the time I spent in the lab, our research project has made significant progress, and as of now, we are drafting a paper to document all the results! Overall, I thank the donors and the URAP program for offering me this valuable summer experience and the research I was able to perform as a result.
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Major: Molecular and Cellular Biology: Genetics, Genomics, and Development
Mentor: Dr. Ellen Simms/Dr. Mohsin Tariq
Sponsor: Chandra Research Fellows - Chandra Fund
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