Kean Quest


The spread of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in the environment is a worldwide problem that threatens human health. Bacteria are becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics as the consumption of antibiotics grows. In particular, soil can be contaminated with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics. As of today, there is no surveillance system that tracks the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, however, Tufts University aims to change this by implementing the Prevalence of Antibiotic Resistance in the Environment (PARE) project. The course-based PARE project consists of research students sampling soil in diverse locations and reporting the prevalence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The purpose of our experiment is to determine the percentage of tetracycline-resistant bacterial cells in our soil sample collected near Harwood Arena at Kean University. We hypothesize that if tetracycline-resistant bacteria are present at the soil sample collection site, then there will be a low percentage of antibiotic-resistant colonies on the agar plates. The lab procedure was provided by Tufts University where the soil was collected, a soil sample serial dilution was performed, and the colonies were counted on the incubated plates. Two sets of plates were either treated with no antibiotic, low tetracycline, or high tetracycline. For our Plate Set 1, there were countable colonies for the 1/10³ plate with no antibiotics and 1/10¹ plate with low tetracycline. For our Plate Set 2, there were countable colonies for the 1/10³ plate with no antibiotics. We concluded that there was a low percentage (less than 5%) of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in our soil sample.