School of Health Sciences
Interdisciplinary Studies; Public Health: Pre-Clinical
chytridiomycosis, Bd, microbiome, newts
Medicine and Health Sciences
Bierbaum, Joseph, "The Cutaneous Microbiome of the Eastern Red-Spotted Newt (Notophthalmus viridescens) and its Role as Defense Against Fungal Pathogens" (2022). Senior Honors Theses. 1194.
Chytridiomycosis is a life-threatening disease which infects amphibian species worldwide. Chytrid fungi Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) and Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans have been found to be the primary causes of chytridiomycosis. In past research, it has been found that the skin microbiome of certain amphibian species could have fungal inhibition properties, reducing the effects of the chytrid fungi. In this study, 15 eastern red-spotted newts (Notophthalmus viridescens) were collected, to determine if cutaneous bacteria of the newts secrete antifungal compounds. Pure cultures of each bacterium morphotype were produced from mass culture plates, with 188 morphotypes being isolated. The antifungal properties of the skin microbiome were obtained through a Bd assay, which was completed to find comparisons of which bacteria inhibited Bd.