Faculty Advisor

Shell, Scarlet


Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacterium that causes tuberculosis, can enter non-growing states in which it is phenotypically tolerant of antibiotics. These states are characterized by reduced metabolic activity, and occur in response to stressors encountered in the body, such as hypoxia and starvation. Both M. tuberculosis and its non-pathogenic relative M. smegmatis have been shown to stabilize their mRNA transcripts under growth-inhibiting conditions. One explanation for this phenomenon could be a decrease in the intracellular levels of mRNA degradation proteins. In the present research, several proteins fitting that description were epitope-tagged and their abundance measured under stress. Our results suggest that RNase E may be specifically downregulated in hypoxia.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

April 2017


Biology and Biotechnology

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Biology and Biotechnology

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