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Kathleen Gibson, Ph.D.



  • Assistant Professor, Biology
  • Mount Marty College


  • Ph.D., Biological Sciences - Microbiology, South Dakota State University, Brookings
  • M.S., Biological Sciences - Microbiology, South Dakota State University, Brookings
  • B.S., Biology & Chemistry, Northern State University, Aberdeen, SD

Current Research: As the search and development for new antibiotics becomes a priority, plants have received more attention as a potential source for new treatments (Silva and Fernandes 2010). Humans have historically used plants in traditional medicine to treat a variety of infections (Gobalakrishnan et al. 2013). These treatments may be effective because of plants defense mechanism. As plants are exposed to pathogens, they defend themselves by producing and accumulating antimicrobial compounds within their tissues (Cowan 1999). Through careful selection, the antimicrobial phytochemicals within these plants can be extracted, analyzed for activity and characterized. During each stage, the stepwise progression from screening through fractionation must ensure that the active microbial is still retained within the sample. The continued use of bioassays like the agar disc diffusion assays will guide the collection of the antimicrobial fraction as well as identifying the active secondary metabolites with the plant.

Specific Aim 1: Selection and preliminary screening of plants
Specific Aim 2: Minimum inhibitory concentrations extract characterization
Specific Aim 3: Fractionation and characterization of active components