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The gut microbiome is the collection of microscopic organisms that reside in the gastrointestinal tract of another organism. These microscopic organisms often have a direct impact on their host’s health. An example of this is the link between a modified gut microbiome in humans and several liver disorders. Understanding insect microbiota can be useful for ecological and crop protection. The aim of our study is to understand where the microbiota residing in the Trichoplusia ni gut originated. From previous studies, it has been indicated that the gut microbiota of insects originates from the food they eat. To test the hypothesis that T. ni gut microbiota originates from the microbiota on the food they eat, T. ni was raised on an organic green cabbage diet with a control group raised on an artificial lab diet. Bacteria were then cultured from the food (experimental and control) and the dissected midgut of T. ni caterpillars from the experimental and control groups. The bacteria will be identified using biochemical tests using the BIOLOG system. Our hypothesis would be supported if the bacterial species found on the food and in the gut are the same, and if the bacterial species differ from the food and those found in the gut then it suggests that the gut is colonized from elsewhere.


File nameDate UploadedVisibilityFile size
19 Jul 2022
284 MB



  • Subject
    • Biology

  • Institution
    • Dahlonega

  • Event date
    • 17 April 2020

  • Date submitted

    19 July 2022

  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      Margaret Smith, Erin Barding, and Dobroslawa Bialonska