1st Day

What did you do today? 
We used an inoculating loop to take samples from a tray in a canteen. After which, we applied the sample on the surface of the agar. After labelling the different agar plates, we began to explore and used cotton swabs to collect samples from around the lab. Some of which included the seat of a chair and the handle of a drawer. We did the same thing, applying the samples onto the agar. Then, we proceeded to walk around NTU and collect samples from places of our choice. (e.g. door handles, lift buttons etc)

What did you learn today? 
I learnt how to isolate bacteria and apply them onto agar. I also learnt some interesting facts about bacteria. For example, all of the bacteria in our body weighs around 2kg. 

How do you feel about today's activities? 
The project has made me learn that not all bacteria are harmful and some even have health benefits. I can apply this knowlege by resorting to healthier food choices such as yoghurt which contains probiotics. 

Questions:
1. What are bacteria? List down some characteristics of bacteria. 
- They are microorganisms which are all around us and are too small to be seen by the naked eye. 
- Characteristics: Unicellular, cell wall made of murein, prokaryotes (no membrane-bound organelles)

2. How can bacteria be identified? 
- Gram staining 
- Genetic testing 

3. Name three common bacteria and places where they are commonly found.
- Escherichia coli (E. coli) in the human intestine
- Vibrio Cholerae in the human intestine 
- Enteritis Salmonella in food

4. Are all bacteria harmful? If not, name some bacteria beneficial to humans. 
No, some are not harmful. Some of the beneficial bacteria include:
- Streptococcus thermophilus helps to strengthen immunity and improves the functioning of gut
- Lactobacillus acidophilus (L. acidophilus) produces lactic acid and hydrogen peroxide which create unfavourable conditions for harmful bacteria to grow 
- Bacillus Coagulans can treat various gastrointestinal disorders  

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