Name your phage: virus discovery brings science to undergraduates

Students step into science by identifying and naming thousands of bacteriophages - viruses that attack bacteria - as part of the SEA-PHAGES program headed up by Pitt biologist Graham Hatfull. CRC powers the sequencing and analysis of a sliver of the billions-plus-strong, ever-changing population of bacteriophages. “Bacteria and phages are locked in a 3-billion year war,” Hatfull says simply. “Dynamic populations have been evolving for a long time, and they keep evolving.”

Left, Pitt students Aishwarya Mukundan and Daniel Zipfel hunt for phages in Pitt's SEA-PHAGE lab. Below: phages armed for battle. Image by Travis Mavrich in the Hatfull lab.

 

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