Inhibitory effects of captan on growth of Escherichia coli and Bacillus coagulans

(1) Williamston High School
Cover photo for Inhibitory effects of captan on growth of <i>Escherichia</i> coli and <i>Bacillus coagulans</i>

As the world’s population increases, so does the need for the availability of clean fruits and vegetables. In order to comply with these demands, an increase in the usage of pesticides, such as captan, has also emerged. This study aimed to determine the effect that captan has on the gut microbiome, specifically by using Bacillus coagulans and modeling strains of Escherichia coli by using Escherichia coli K-12. To do this, we mixed a pesticide dilution into melted nutrient agar, while the control groups only contained distilled water. After they had re-hardened, we streaked the plates and placed the E. coli and the B. coagulans into an incubator. Following incubation, we found a significant difference in bacterial growth between the control and the captan-containing plates. Therefore, we concluded that the pesticide captan has a negative effect on the growth of these bacteria, and, potentially, on the human microbiome. The information found during this experiment could possibly warn regular produce consumers of the potential dangers of not washing their products before consumption.

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