Citizen Science: Nematode Isolation

central ma

As as extension to the Srinivasan Lab’s 2013 MQP Project, the lab initiated a Citizen Science Project on the topic of nematode isolation. Visitors of Touch Tomorrow, local area schools, pre-college interns in the lab, and high school LAUNCH campers have all participated in this citizen science endeavor which aims to characterize the species of nematodes present in the soil in the areas surrounding WPI. Participants collected soil from various places, documented things such as weather, temperature, and location of sample, and passed it along to the lab to see what types of nematodes were present in those specific areas. Nematodes were isolated from the soil samples through simple methods and if nematodes were found, their DNA could be sequenced for identification of species. This project allowed community participation which encourages excitement and interest in science-  a major goal of the lab.