PCR is a standard laboratory technique that allows amplification of specific segments of DNA based on complementarity.
A new gene can be inserted into a loop of bacterial DNA called a plasmid. This is done by cutting the plasmid DNA with a restriction enzyme, which allows a new piece of DNA to be inserted. The ends of the new piece of DNA are stitched together by an enzyme called DNA ligase. The genetically...
Polymerase chain reaction, or PCR, is a technique for making many copies of a specific DNA sequence. DNA is repeatedly heated and cooled in the presence of primers that bracket the desired sequence and of the enzyme Tac polymerase. In as few as 30 cycles, a billion copies of the target sequence...
Fred Sanger developed the first technique for sequencing DNA. DNA is replicated in the presence of chemically altered versions of the A, C, G, and T bases. These bases stop the replication process when they are incorporated into the growing strand of DNA, resulting in varying lengths of short...
In shotgun sequencing many copies of the entire genome are "blown up" into millions of small fragments. Each small fragment is sequenced. Powerful computers then assemble the individual fragments into the original configuration. Repeat sequences pose a problem for this approach because their...
Watch two leading virus researchers explain how they use both simple and sophisticated technologies to detect and fight infectious agents.
New technologies like the Virochip harness DNA's properties to identify and fight new viruses.
In four presentations, Stuart L. Schreiber, PhD, and Eric S. Lander, PhD, open a window onto the fast-paced world of genomic science and chemical genetics.
Dr. Lander explores human genetic variation and how it may affect individual susceptibility to certain diseases.
Learn the principles of how DNA is sequenced and assembled into whole genomes using the Sanger method, shotgun sequencing, or ultra-deep sequencing.
Topics include: PCR, DNA Sequencing, Genetic Engineering, and Microarray. This guide includes multiple classroom-ready worksheets to accompany HHMI’s virtual labs.
The following classroom-ready resources complement The Double Helix. This short film describes the evidence that led James Watson and Francis Crick to the discovery of the double-helical structure of DNA and how the structure immediately revealed how genetic information is stored and...
Dr. Eric Lander takes us on a tour of this remarkable genetic century, describing the rapid advances in DNA sequencing technologies and information science.