Date of Last Revision

2021-09-09 06:54:25



Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Date of Expected Graduation

Winter 2015


Intracytoplasmic membranes are structures that form within cells which help facilitate a variety of different metabolic processes. This feature of intracellular membranes makes them particularly valuable for studying compartmentalization and cell dynamics in bacteria. In the past, transmission electron microscopy has been the primary method for imaging bacteria with intracytoplasmic membranes. Because transmission electron microscopy takes images of a cell in fixed slices, it’s impossible to follow a cell’s growth and development over time. Fluorescence microscopy is a particularly effective method of measurement that can combat these issues when evaluating live bacterial cells. Here, standard biochemical laboratory procedures were used for the growth and development of two methanotrophs, Methylomicrobium alcaliphilum 20Z and Methylosinus trichosporium OB3b, and a photosynthetic purple non-sulfur bacterium, Rhodobacter sphaeroides 2.4.1. Fluorescence microscopy was used to monitor and evaluate these cells, and subsequently quantify the data obtained. The data obtained from this research project helped develop a rapid assessment method for intracellular membrane identification. It also helped clarify both how and why these intracellular membranes form.

Research Sponsor

Dr. Michael Konopka

First Reader

Dr. Adam Smith

Second Reader

Dr. Aliaksei Boika



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.