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Identification of Two Unknown Bacteria

             The purpose of this experiment was to learn how to isolate and identify unknown bacteria using methods from the lab. Methods that were used during this experiment included gram staining, streaking for isolation using the Quadrant Streak Method, and differential tests. Critical tests used in this experiment were the IMViC tests, the Glucose Oxidation-Fermentation test, the Novobiocin test, and the Decarboxylation tests. Using results from these critical tests, the bacteria from Unknown 9 were found to be Staphylococcus saprophyticus and Enterobacter cloacae. These bacteria are both found in mammals and play critical roles in digestion and vaginal health. While both bacteria naturally occur in these systems, they can both be opportunistic pathogens. .
             Microbial organisms are among the world's oldest organisms and continue to play an important role in everyday life on Earth. Microbes can be found in all life systems, whether they be a part of a large ecosystem or a small one. One function they provide is regulation of Earth's atmosphere. For example, there has been new research in discovering bacteria that may be able to oxidize methane by converting nitric oxide to atmospheric nitrogen (Mascarelli, A., 2010). This would suggest that there could be microbial life on Mars, given its methane-rich atmosphere. A second function they provide is healthy gut activity for vertebrates. Scientists have been conducting extensive research on bacteria's role in the human digestive system, including bacteria's role in preventing and treating chronic gastrointestinal diseases (Guinane, C., & Cotter, P, 2013). Gut microbials may soon be involved in the therapeutic treatment of chronic gastrointestinal diseases. Lastly, microbial organisms are important in their newly discovered role of helping to decrease greenhouse gases caused by pollution (Schimel, 2004). .
             Studying these organisms can be challenging, since they often depend on each other to flourish.

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