Extracting DNA from strawberries

DNA is Everywhere!
In this lesson students learned all about deoxyribonucleic acid, more commonly known as DNA. After getting an overview of DNA’s role in the storage of genetic information, students followed a DNA extraction protocol experiment and successfully extracted DNA from strawberries by breaking down the cell membranes with mechanical disruption and detergent. By breaking down the cell wall, membrane, and nuclear membrane, students were able to isolate the nucleic acids.


They then added some very cold isopropyl alcohol to the resulting lysate (the fluid and cell remnants left over when the cells were broken up), which caused the DNA to become visible at the border between the aqueous solution and the alcohol. The addition of alcohol to the cell lysate allows the nucleic acids become visible without a microscope! The activity involved a number of different steps and helped emphasize the importance of following directions carefully. The young scientists were rewarded for their diligence by seeing DNA in their test cups at the end of the lab!


Students then each made their own paper model of DNA using DNA origami. They assigned a color to each base pair and colored the template. Then they folded their templates into a helical shape and put them together with Mr. Condon’s help.

More Information:

Templates and a video showing how to fold the DNA origami can be found here : http://www.yourgenome.org/activities/origami-dna

A similar experiment that you can do at home: http://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/labs/extraction/howto/DNA_Extraction.pdf


¡El ADN está en todos lados!

En esta clase los estudiantes aprendieron sobre el ácido desoxirribonucleico, más conocido como ADN. Después de hacer una pequeña revisión sobre el rol de ADN como almacén de información genética, los estudiantes siguieron un protocolo de extracción de ADN. Los estudiantes extrajeron exitosamente el ADN de germen de trigo. Para esto, primero tuvieron que romper las membranas de las células con detergente. Entonces, al romper la pared celular, la membrana celular y nuclear, los estudiantes lograron aislar los ácidos nucleicos.

A continuación, cogieron el lisado resultante (el líquido que sobra de la degradación del germen de trigo y que contiene células) y le agregaron etanol al 70% y muy frío. Esto hizo posible que el ADN se visualizara entre los bordes de la solución acuosa y el etanol. La adición de etanol al lisado de células permite que los ácidos nucleicos se visualicen sin la necesidad de usar un microscopio. Esta actividad involucra varios pasos distintos y permitió enfatizar la importancia de seguir instrucciones de manera cuidadosa. Los jóvenes científicos fueron recompensados por su diligencia: ¡lograron observar ADN en sus tubos de ensayo!


Información adicional:

Puedes aprender como hacer ADN de origami aquí: http://www.yourgenome.org/activities/origami-dna

Un experimento similar que puede hacerse en casa: http://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/labs/extraction/howto/DNA_Extraction.pdf

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Open 7 days INFO
Our Young Pre classroom is for ages. This age group is working