We're kicking off a new project at CCL this month - Kombucha Genomics! For all you fermented foods lovers out there, this is the project for you. Over the course of the next 5-6 months, we'll go through all the steps to isolate and identify a variety of bacterial and yeast strains from kombucha or other fermented foods (bring your own), starting with the basic culturing and progressing all the way through DNA barcoding, genome and microbiome sequencing, systems biology, synthetic biology, and more!
Kombucha (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kombucha) is a fermented tea with a very complex symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeasts (SCOBY) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SCOBY), composed of dozens of different species. It's a health food; it's a tasty fizzy caffeinated beverage; it even makes vegan leather (http://www.ecouterre.com/u-k-designer-grows-an-entire-wardrobe-from-tea-fermenting-bacteria/) - what's not to like!
In this inaugural meeting, we will discuss the science of kombucha and other fermented foods, lay out our plans for this project, discuss other angles we can pursue, and scheduling for upcoming project meetups.
We will organize a series of Lab Skills 101 classes on Saturday mornings to tie into this project,starting this coming Saturday, when Rikke will be teaching us all about making growth media, and safely using the autoclave and biosafety cabinet (https://www.meetup.com/Counter-Culture-Labs/events/244878920/).
We hope to run this project in collaboration with our friends at BioCurious and other community labs around the world. You can join us remotely over Zoom at https://zoom.us/j/820128495 Or, go to https://zoom.us/join and enter meeting ID:[masked] . Or to call in by phone, dial: +1 (415)[masked] or +1 (646)[masked] Meeting ID:[masked]