Post by Zoë and Modupe (ARISE student researchers)
The ultimate goal of this research is to study the impact of flooding on the microbiome of urban surfaces in NYC by collecting and sequencing DNA from these surfaces before and after flooding. To do this, a baseline measure of the microbial composition of these surfaces is necessary. This particular research is a preliminary stage which aims to establish the baseline by optimizing the DNA collection and extraction procedures. The procedures determined to produce the highest DNA yield will be used to measure and characterize the baseline microbiome of NYC urban surfaces. This baseline will then be used in the next phase of the project by comparing it with the microbiome of recently flooded surfaces. Overall, this research will contribute to a better understanding of the possible effects of flooding on the city’s microbiome, which can help motivate interventions to protect the health of NYC residents.