Biology Faculty and Students Conduct Research in Sapelo

Over the summer, Dr. Sharon Mozley-Standridge and Dr. Melissa Sisson, both members of MGA's biology faculty, accompanied three students on a research trip to Sapelo, a state-managed barrier island on Georgia's coast. The students - Miracle Odom, Haley Starr, and Dylan Kling-Dubose - took part in field research related to magnetotactic bacteria. Starr graduated at the end of summer semester with a B.S. in biology and is currently a grad student at UGA's veterinary school. Odom, vice president of MGA's Science Club, is completing her B.S. in biology while Kling-Dubose, Science Club president, is finishing up his B.S. in math.

Mozley-Standridge has been working with Edwynn Wallace, who teaches physics at MGA, on magnetotactic bacteria (MTB) research.  MTBs are a polyphyletic group of bacteria that orients along the magnetic field lines of Earth's magnetic field. MTBs are thought to play an important role in the cycling of certain elements, especially iron, in aquatic environments and have potential medical applications. Mozley-Standridge, Wallace, and MGA students have found MTBs in the pond on the Cochran Campus and from multiple salt marsh barrier islands along Georgia's coast.

Biology students on their research trip in Sapelo.

Faculty on their research trip in Sapelo.

Students on their research trip in Sapelo.