This project was prepared as part of a BioQUEST faculty development workshop entitled ASM/BioQUEST Bioinformatics Institute at American Society for Microbiology in March 2008. The BioQUEST Curriculum Consortium is committed to the reform of undergraduate biology instruction through an emphasis on engaging students in realistic scientific practices. This approach is sometimes characterized as an inquiry driven approach and is captured in BioQUEST's three P's (problem-posing, problem-solving, and peer-persuasion). As part of this workshop groups of faculty were encouraged to initiate innovative curricular projects. We are sharing these works in progress in the hope that they will stimulate further exploration, collaboration and development. Please see the following links for additional information:

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Show Me the Way to Go Home: Evolution of chemotaxis proteins MCP and CheA in the transition from a free-living to pathogenic life style in Bordetella
Authors          Audiences          Overview           Materials          Resources           Future Directions



Mark Forsyth
College of William and Mary

Lorraine Olendzenski
St. Lawrence University

Michael LaGier
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Christine Bezotte
Elmira College


Brief Overview:

Background: Chemotaxis in bacteria involves methyl accepting chemotaxis receptor proteins (MCP) that sense the attractants and repellents in the environment and interact with a histidine kinase CheA initiating a phosphorylation cascade that affects flagellar rotation. Hypothesis: Proteins associated with chemotaxis will be differentially selected in pathogenic species compared to free-living representatives. We compared the MCPs and CheA proteins in species of pathogenic and a free-living Bordetella species.  


Resources and References:

Biology Workbench ConSurf Server BLAST NCBI Microbial Genomes  


Future Directions:

Transporter repetoire; evolution of CheA across more taxa  



- chemotaxisBIOQUESTposter.ppt