Living organisms such as slime molds, fungi, protozoa, algae, and others are grown and maintained in our lab for use in courses such as General Biology, Plant Biology, Zoology, Embryology and others. It is our job to ensure that the organisms are available for the students in these courses at the right time, at the stage required, and in excellent condition. Whenever living material arrives from a supplier, we always examine it under the microscope before it is delivered to the classroom.
Often a particular stage in the life cycle of an organism is required. Here, Biological Sciences Laboratory Assistant --- is shown culturing the slime mold Physarum polycephalum for our Plant Biology course. Timing and planning are critical. On this day, the desired stage was an actively moving (relatively speaking, of course) plasmodium. At other times the sclerotium or sporangium may be requested.
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