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SURF: Announcements of Opportunity

Below are Announcements of Opportunity posted by Caltech faculty and JPL technical staff for the SURF program. Additional AOs for the Amgen Scholars program can be found here.

Specific GROWTH projects being offerred for summer 2017 can be found here.

Students pursuing opportunities at JPL must be U.S. citizens or U.S. permanent residents.

Each AO indicates whether or not it is open to non-Caltech students. If an AO is NOT open to non-Caltech students, please DO NOT contact the mentor.

Announcements of Opportunity are posted as they are received. Please check back regularly for new AO submissions! Remember: This is just one way that you can go about identifying a suitable project and/or mentor.

Announcements for external summer programs are listed here.

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Project:  Characterization of ISS microorganisms: Antibiotic profiling, biofilm formation, countermeasure development
Disciplines:  Biology/Bioengineering, Computer Science
Mentor:  Kasthuri Venkateswaran, (JPL),, Phone: (818) 393-1481
Background:  International Space Station Microbial Observatory of Pathogenic Virus, Bacteria, and Fungi (ISS-MOP) project will generate the microbial censuses associated with various ISS modules using traditional culture-based methods and state-of-the art molecular techniques. The objectives of the ISS-MOP project are to measure presence of viral and select bacterial and fungal pathogens and correlate their presence on crew. The effects of the spaceflight environment on viral and microbial pathogen dynamics are largely unknown and represent both a significant gap in our knowledge and an important opportunity to study the presence of microbial populations and predict health risks during long-term space exploration.
Description:  The objectives of the ISS-MOP project directly respond to the National Research Council Committee for the Decadal Survey on Biological and Physical Sciences in Space recommendation P1 where it states, to establish a microbial observatory program on the ISS to conduct long-term, multigenerational studies of microbial population dynamics. The ISS-MOP project will also provide answers to NASA Space Biology Guiding Questions: How do alterations in gravity affect in microbial cells (CMM1)?; Does the enhanced virulence or other genetic changes observed with microbial cultures flown in space occur in other species (CMM4)?; and What are the genetic changes underlying physiological responses to space flight demonstrated in biological systems (CMM5)?
Student Requirements:  Microbiology, Molecular biology, Biochemistry, Computational skills
Location / Safety:  Project building and/or room locations: . Student will need special safety training: Yes.
Programs:  This AO can be done under the following programs:

  Program    Available To
       SURF    both Caltech and non-Caltech students 

Click on a program name for program info and application requirements.

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