Fluorescence microscopy
Microbiology at Miami

Undergraduate Research in Microbiology

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Undergraduate researcher Maeva Metz and Astronaut Al Worden

Maeva Metz is the recipient of as Astronaut Foundation Scholarship  A junior microbiology major and molecular biology minor, Maeva is one of 38 students nationwide to receive the scholarship, among the most significant merit-based scholarships awarded to undergraduate science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) college students.

Get the most out of your undergraduate microbiology training by getting involved in undergraduate research. Many Miami undergrads participate in research programs in Microbiology. Contact our faculty with research programs that interest you to explore the possibilities.


Development of a research proposal can help you focus your efforts and provide a roadmap for getting results. Check out some of the undergraduate grant opportunities that are available to help support your research.

Persistence pays!

These are some of the recent accomplishments and recognitions received by our undergraduate researchers.

Undergraduate publications

  • Pritchard, R.E., A.J. Prassinos, J.D. Osborne, Z. Raviv, and M.F. Balish. 2014. Reduction of hydrogen peroxide accumulation and toxicity by a catalase from Mycoplasma iowae. PLoS ONE. 9:e105188.
  • Springer, T.I., E. Goebel, D. Hararaju, and N.L. Finley.  2014.  Mutation in the β-hairpin of the Bordetella pertussis adenylate cyclase toxin modulates N-lobe conformation in calmodulin.  Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 453(1):43-48.

Undergraduate grants and awards

Undergraduate Research Awards - Spring 2015
  • John Dougherty, "Metabolic diversity of anole ecomorphs of the Greater Antilles," Paul Schaeffer (BIO)
  • Tian Feng, "Isolation and characterization of methylotrophic methanogens from fresh water sediment," D.J. Ferguson
  • Nick Greene, "Effects of varying carbon dioxide concentrations on Pseudogymnoascus destructans' metabolic potential," Marcia Lee
  • Jesus R. Salas, "Elimination of commercial baculovirus bacmid fp25 mutation sequences for improved protein expression yields," Xiao-Wen Cheng
University Summer Scholars - Summer 2015
  • Tian Feng, "Characterization of freshwater methylotrophic methanogens," D.J. Ferguson.
Howard Hughes Summer Internships - Summer 2015
  • Robert Dieter, "Generation of improved baculovirus expression vectors for protein expression," Xiao-Wen Cheng
  • Neena Patel, "Localization of a Bacterial Protein in a Related Organism," Mitchell Balish
Undergraduate Research Awards - Fall 2016
  • Brian Donohue, "Overcoming AcMNPV bacmid fp25 hypermutable spots for improved protein expression yelds", Xiao-Wen Cheng
  • Britton Altic, "The delection of heterotrophic bacterial communities by ammonia-oxidizing enrichment cultures”, Annette Bollmann
  • Sara Cuadra, "Effects of hydrogen peroxide on Mycoplasma pneumoniae biofilm development”, Mitchell Balish
  • Karina Fenton, Jackie Jeambey, Paul Barrow, and Sarah Powell, "Exploring anti-germinative and fungicidal potential of Aloe arborescens with Candida albicans”, Marcia Lee
Orton K. Stark Awardees - 2014-2015

The The Orton K. Stark Award is given "in Recognition of Academic Achievement of the Highest Order and Efforts and Talents Reflecting the Learning Traditions of the Department of Microbiology." Recent recipients include:


  • Chelsea Abshire
  • Torinda Evans
  • Jason McCoy
  • Abraham Moller


  • Lindsay M. Tirell