Part of Lesson Plan: Recombinant DNA Paper Lab
Activity Overview / Details
After reading the background information in the "Recombinant DNA" lab, students begin following the procedure outlined. To set up this lab, photocopy pages 5-7 on colored paper. Page 5 should be photocopied on blue paper, page 6 on pink, and page 7 on yellow. Students can work in pairs or groups of 3 or 4 and each working group will need one of each of these colored pages. All of the instructions are tailored to these colors. Students will cut and tape the pink strips together, and cut and tape the blue strips together.
Things to emphasize with students:
The blue strips can be in any order, but it needs to be a circle. This is the bacterial plasmid.
The pink strips need to be in order (match the numbers) and should be one long strip. This is the human DNA. They will need to cut the shaded region (gene) out.
The yellow squares are the restriction enzymes. They will need to match the bases of the restriction enzymes with the same base sequences on the blue and pink strips. Whenever they find a matching sequence they need to draw the cut points on the strips and label them.
The goal is to cut the plasmid in only ONE place and to cut the DNA sequence in two places (once on either side of the gene). More than one enzyme may work, but they want the one that will cut as close as possible to the gene.
Sometimes students lose context of what exactly they are doing. Good checks for understanding can be done by walking up to them and asking what each color represents and why they are doing each step. Usually this helps them self discover the context.